Connecting the dots between demand marketing and revenue is a challenge in any industry, but especially for highly regulated fields like healthcare, which are often slow to adopt modern marketing and sales practices. By embarking on a Demand Marketing Transformation to shift away from a campaign-based approach to a strategic demand state, Avanos has been able to drastically increase marketing’s contribution to revenue goals, surpass industry benchmarks, and revolutionize the way they measure content performance.
“One of the best aspects of the strategic approach is that content is now a key driver for our demand engine. We’re successfully engaging with this tough-to-reach audience of healthcare professionals through our content.” – Michael Johnson, Director of Global Digital Marketing & eCommerce, Avanos
The challenge: engaging hard-to-reach surgeons and clinicians
At Avanos, both marketing and sales leaders are accountable for pipeline and revenue, but traditional lead generation efforts were not providing predictable and reliable leads to their sales teams. It’s no wonder, when you consider that the primary audience for Avanos’ Acute Pain Management solutions is surgeons, anesthesiologists and other clinicians.
These healthcare professionals don’t spend their days sitting at a computer—they’re in the operating room or seeing patients. They have little time or patience for marketing unless the content is spot-on and relevant. “Our audience is known for being very difficult to reach, so we were understandably skeptical about being able to overcome that resistance,” says Michael Johnson, Director of Digital Marketing and eCommerce at Avanos.
To break through, Avanos needed to put content at the core of their demand marketing engine and improve customer experiences throughout every step of the buyer journey— and beyond. They also needed a well-defined process and framework to better align with sales on lead management and leverage their Marketo marketing automation platform to support a complex demand generation strategy.
The solution: buyer-focused, customer-first content strategy and demand process
Starting with their Acute Pain Management business, Avanos worked with ANNUITAS to implement a Perpetual Demand Generation® (PDG) program, a strategic foundation that optimizes customer experience, accelerates business growth, and proves marketing ROI.
For Avanos, content strategy was a critical component, as it would fuel relevant communication streams to engage, nurture and convert their hard-to-reach audience. Starting with first-hand customer interviews and research, we gained a deep understanding about the audience’s priorities, pain points and purchasing triggers. Based on these insights, we created two distinct nurture tracks to support the needs of “clinical” personas like surgeons or anesthesiologists, and “financial” personas like hospital administrators and pharmacists.
Now, instead of producing random ebooks and product-focused brochures, Avanos’ marketing teams are producing strategic content that is backed by customer research and aligned to buyer pain points and priorities throughout their journey.
“Through our customer research we understand the buyer pain points and what messages and channels are going to get through to them. We’ve been able to show that our content is actually resonating with orthopedic surgeons.” – Jennifer Harmel, EVP and Principal at ANNUITAS
Another key to Avanos’ success has been the ANNUITAS Demand Process, which establishes a clear formula for marketing’s contribution to revenue. This process builds an ongoing stream of high-quality, qualified leads to sales and provides valuable intelligence to sales reps—before they get on the phone with a prospect.
The result: delivering predictable, measurable results in half the time
An ANNUITAS Demand Marketing Transformation has enabled Avanos to not only successfully engage with physicians and hospital administrators, but also to reliably, predictably and consistently drive revenue. Content performance metrics show how each content offer is performing in different channels and with different personas.
New closed-loop reporting enables Avanos’ marketers to view end-to-end performance of leads sourced and nurtured through the ANNUITAS PDG program.
Based on the success of this program, Avanos was named as a finalist for Marketo’s 2018 Revvie Awards. Better yet, the Avanos Marketing team has been so pleased with the results that their Acute Pain Management business has achieved, they partnered with ANNUITAS to go through a Demand Marketing Transformation for their Chronic Pain segment.
Ultimately, the move to a buyer-focused, customer-first content model rolls up into one key priority: optimizing the customer experience. Better customer experiences translate into better business outcomes, as leads are better qualified, more leads turn into sales, and more buyers become long-term loyal customers.
“Thanks to closed-loop reporting, we’re now able to prove marketing ROI, not only by exceeding goals for marketing-influenced leads, but also through dramatically improved velocity.” – Michael Johnson, Director of Global Digital Marketing and eCommerce at Avanos
Avanos is a $612M medical device company focused on delivering clinically superior breakthrough solutions. The company develops, manufactures, and delivers products and solutions in pain management, digestive health, respiratory health, and IV therapy. Formerly Kimberly-Clark Health Care, Halyard Health became an independent company in 2014 and rebranded as Avanos in 2018.
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