We’re all still navigating the virus that can’t be named. You know the one; it’s dominated the headlines for years, not only impacting every fiber of our daily lives, but also every area of healthcare communications and media relations. From pediatrics and cancer screenings to telemedicine and preventive care, everything seemed to take a backseat to that one pandemic.
But like it or not, those in PR expecting things to have remained undented in spite of this tectonic change might be overly optimistic, to put it nicely. For those in step with the shift in tide, understanding all the changes caused by the pandemic, particularly for healthcare public relations agency professionals, is critical for strategic planning and successful communications.
Through The Clutter With a Healthcare Public Relations Agency
With the intense spotlight on COVID-19, public interest in the specific science behind healthcare news has gone up significantly. The demand for information about clinical research and public health has been growing for years as the internet democratized access to content. This ramped up the need for accurate and timely information.
To break through the clutter of confusingly saturated coverage, healthcare public relations agency professionals working in pharmaceuticals and biotech need to provide greater detail regarding clinical trials. This would include the technology’s scientific mechanism of action, as well as project status, timing, and funding resources.
The Right Message Needs The Right Messenger
Amongst so much clutter, one of the best ways to make sure your message stands out is to, well, have the right messenger. Utilizing an engaging and charismatic spokesperson is a highly effective tactic. Having a media-ready personality who can clearly explain technical or abstract ideas without coming off as bland or dull is a secret weapon healthcare communicators can use to grab the media’s attention and set themselves apart from the pack.
Sometimes, training is needed to strike the right balance between scientific credibility and likability, which can make a huge difference between landing or losing a story.
Another major shift in medical and pharma communications has been the impact on live, in-person events. Presentations announcing pivotal data or first-in-class medications have gone from convention centers to Zoom calls. On-site interviews with clinical trial investigators changed to email Q&As.
More and more, biopharma companies are using exclusive media interviews, data released in peer-reviewed medical journals and digital content like videos and microsites to reach physicians, media, patients, companies and stakeholders. Monitoring this space will be important to provide astute counsel for individuals or companies participating in these events.
Be a Resource, Not a Burden
When conducting media outreach, it is important to keep in mind that the pandemic has caused a high rate of reporter burnout and turnover. This is something of which professionals working for a healthcare public relations agency across all industries should remain cognizant of.
ReBlonde: an Award-Winning Healthcare Public Relations Agency
To be able to compete in the marketplace of information, healthcare PR professionals need to lead with relevant scientific data, utilize digital content platforms efficiently and creatively, and work with credible, engaging spokespeople. By strengthening relationships with reporters and producers, we can also deliver the best possible outcomes for clients and media alike.