Artificial Intelligence and a Patient-Centric Approach: Highlights from DPE 2023

As one of the most important events in our industry, Digital Pharma East is crucial for furthering the conversation around trends that will impact healthcare marketers most over the next few years. In 2022, it was all about omnichannel. But with AI top of mind at this year’s conference, several speakers noted how artificial intelligence — and more specifically, connected intelligence — can help enhance our marketing strategies for the future.

During his keynote presentation, DeepIntent Founder and CEO Chris Paquette spoke about the role of connectivity in building AI-powered solutions. These are the very solutions that can enable better personalization, more relevant omnichannel engagements, and an overall more patient-centric approach — all of which happened to be topics at this year’s event.

Read on for our top takeaways from Digital Pharma East.

1. Improving customer experience is the #1 priority.

In today’s fragmented landscape, marketers are challenged with reaching patients and HCPs in the moments that matter most. What became clear across many conversations is that we all share a common goal of improving the customer experience.

During a panel titled “The New Customer Engagement Model,” Paul Murasko, Head of Digital Innovation and Marketing Operations at Azurity Pharmaceuticals, spoke about the importance of viewing patients and HCPs as customers, and most of all, humans. “Just because [providers] put on a lab coat, it doesn’t mean they change their behaviors.” In that same vein, Teona Johnson, VP of Marketing at Calliditas Therapeutics, acknowledged how both audiences — like all consumers today — want to receive information “in a fast, customized way on the channels they have a preference for.”

The journey to getting a patient on script is “all about relationship building,” according to Jerrad Rickard, General Manager of Email and OneKey at IQVIA. Because it involves multiple touchpoints, a personalized, omnichannel approach is now essential for enhancing the customer experience and creating ongoing relationships with patients and HCPs.

2. Artificial intelligence will not replace but enable.

“AI is the buzzword of the conference.”

More than just a casual observation from panel moderator Rachel Levy, artificial intelligence is truly having a moment. But despite the widespread adoption of generative AI over the last year, many in our industry have been hesitant to embrace it. As Andrea Palmer, President of Publicis Health Media, put it, “ChatGPT wasn’t built for health, but we have to think about the way ChatGPT influences health,” referring to the “seismic shifts” in how people learn, engage with, and obtain information today. “Being prepared for change and comfortable with change is incredibly important right now,” she added.

There’s no denying that artificial intelligence will be a major disruptor in the coming years, but DeepIntent’s Chief Analytics Officer John Mangano made sure to emphasize that AI “doesn’t replace people, it just changes what we’re doing,” helping us process information faster than we ever have before. At Genentech, VP of U.S. Information Technology Charles Castano believes it will “enable productivity,” while Giuseppe Firenze, SVP and Information Officer at Eli Lilly, says AI “will make our employees superhuman.”

In a panel on “Pharma’s Digital Future,” Ryan Billings, Executive Director and Head of Commercial Innovation at Organon, offered some perspective on another fairly recent disruptor in our industry. “Not even ten years ago, it was social. Today, social is a foundational part of all of our marketing plans.”

3. Connected intelligence is the key to a patient-centric approach.

Now that we’ve established artificial intelligence is nothing to fear, we can explore the vast potential it holds to revolutionize the ways we engage healthcare audiences at scale. In his keynote presentation, Chris Paquette touched on how “generative AI has the power to transform the way we are diagnosing, treating, and caring for patients.” With the goal of improving patient outcomes, Chris stressed the importance of following a patient-centric paradigm — meeting people where they are with relevant information that will create the most impact.

However, fragmentation remains a challenge. If it takes a dozen different point solutions to reach patients along their journey, it also means your data is siloed across a dozen different point solutions, which can result in time delays and missed opportunities to get your message out. So, how do we bridge this gap between our data and our systems? By harnessing a new kind of intelligence we call “connected intelligence.”

Offering a glimpse into the future of healthcare marketing, Chris discussed how “the promise of artificial intelligence is being realized — not just in better results and better efficiencies in workflow, but in real dollars and cents.” With the introduction of AI-powered tools like DeepIntent Copilot, which provides marketers with optimization recommendations in real-time during campaign planning and activation, we can “unlock the value of this new technology by connecting our data and solutions.”

Click here to learn more about DeepIntent Copilot.

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