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Education Streaming: A New Way to Engage HCPs in Scientific Exchange
In this episode of the Elevate podcast series, MAPS speaks with Bozidar Jovicevic, former VP at Sanofi and Novartis and now a CEO of Evermed, about the opportunity the pandemic presented for pharma to rethink the ways they engage with HCPs. Gone is the model of HCPs being always available to MSL presenting a slide deck. Today, Medical Affairs teams are taking a technology-powered, HCP-centric approach to scientific exchange, using personalized, on-demand, video content and data to understand HCP preferences that can inform subsequent MSL interactions. Learn how your Medical Affairs team can implement a Netflix-like, education streaming strategy to obtain direct access to HCPs, engage them repeatedly, and accelerate product launches and adoption.
Garth Sundem 00:00
Welcome to this episode of the Medical Affairs Professional Society Podcast Series: “Elevate”. I’m your host, Garth Sundem, communications director at MAPS. And today we’re speaking about education streaming as an alternative to traditional HCP engagement strategies with Bozidar Jovicevic, CEO of Evermed. This episode is sponsored by Evermed, an HCP engagement company that helps pharma teams rapidly launched their own Netflix for HCP streaming platform to regain direct access to HCPs and accelerate their product adoption. So, Bozey, we have so much language in this space around hybrid and virtual and asynchronous engagements. So, can you please start by telling us what you mean by education streaming?
Bozidar Jovicevic 00:54
Yeah, sure, Garth, and thanks for having me. And great job the pronunciation of highly very difficult to pronounce name of mine. So, what is education streaming? Education streaming is a new way to engage HTTPS in this post COVID. World and as the name implies, and we can talk more about it than on packet, of course, but as the name implies, are two components education and streaming. So why education because education is a trend in engagement of a GPS, but also in commercial activities, marketing and sales. So, if you think of a firewall between medical and commercial, that, you know, we all experienced in pharma, what bridges those two functions is actually education. So, the better job pharma companies do with educating physicians on disease awareness, on unmet needs on Mo, model fractures, and efficacy answers to the better job they do educating rather than selling, the better business impact will be so education is at the core of engagement of the future rather than like pushy tactics and product messages. The education is the first part, the second one is streaming. Why streaming? Well, especially in the COVID world, where we were kind of at home, watching more Netflix and Amazon Prime, we live in the era of streaming. That’s how we entertain ourselves, but as also how we stay up to date. All the research lately shows that doctors prefer video as the number one format of staying up to date, sometimes audio when they’re driving or exercising as a podcast like we’re doing right now. So streaming is a big trend and is the way to stay staying up to date for doctor. So, when you combine the two, it’s a dedication streaming, it’s really modern, non-personal, new way, non-personal, personalized, but non personal, because there is no rep or MSL in that part of engagement, a modern, non-personal highlighting personalized way to engage doctors.
Garth Sundem 03:05
Okay, so, if we’re putting this in the bucket of synchronous or asynchronous, this would then be asynchronous, you’re talking about making video content and making it available kind of on demand for HCPs to access on their own time?
Bozidar Jovicevic 03:20
Yes, I’m glad you asked. Asynchronous, basically, for me means on demand means as a doctor I can access at any time. And if I ask a question, I can asynchronous together an answer, let’s say from the speaker or presenter that lecture or other doctors so they can see my comment at any time and respond at any time. Now live, of course, is always exciting. And but at the same time, we live in a global world, there are doctors all around the planet. So sometimes, you know, is somewhere else, you know, 9pm. And also there are a lot of challenges, but a lot of things live so on demand has this incredibly powerful benefit of convenience. And that’s why in all the research lately on demand is the number one most preferred format for doctors to access education.
Garth Sundem 04:12
Okay, and so let’s talk about this need. So, what problem does this education streaming solve that you see out there in the world of Medical Affairs?
Bozidar Jovicevic 04:25
Yep, great question. So, at the end of the day, there has to be a problem worth solving in order for strategies like education shaming to work. And when we think about that, we think in terms of what are the macro trends, what’s really happening right now in the market, especially in the post college world, and one undeniable trend that is happening right now is that physicians are restricted in access to Pharma. And to make that more specific, between 2021 and 2020, according to very large Viva research 57%, the drop in access to HCPs has dropped by 57%. And that number is just massive. In other words, doctors are closing the doors to Pharma. And if you add on top of that, that frequency for pharmacists and doctors has dropped by additional 70%. Now you kind of see two things, doctors are either completely closing the doors to pharma, or when they open the door to interacting with pharma, they are doing it way less frequently. So, there is no second chance for first impression access to doctors is a problem. So, the real question is, it’s almost like when I think about it’s almost like COVID kind of gave permission almost to physicians to change the way they interact with pharma. And when I could talk about this dropped 57%. This includes the digital remote engaged, this is not in personnel, this is in person and digital engagement over zoom. Oh, we’ve engaged so huge drop. Yeah.
Garth Sundem 06:01
And is that, is that physicians closing the door to the commercial wing of Pharma? Or is that physicians also requesting less interaction with Medical Affairs? Or does that encompass both?
Bozidar Jovicevic 06:15
So that encompasses both, it’s simply that the doctors want less interruption, and more engagement on their own terms. And of course, there are differences between reps and MSLs. And the time they spend in doctor they see, but the trend is over and encompassing medical and commercial.
Garth Sundem 06:35
Right. So, HCPs, they’re still aware that they need information from pharma. But they want it in different ways. And on their own time. Is that, Is that right?
Bozidar Jovicevic 06:47
Yeah, on their own terms, at their own time, as just mentioned, as asynchronously, or On Demand. So, it’s almost like we had this old world, the new world like pre COVID and postcards, right. And during COVID, you know, pharma companies kind of shot what to them was like a scramble phase, like, let’s see what we can do digitally. Now. Now, people starting to think where’s your opportunity with the digital thing. So, if you think about before, COVID Enough, their quality their old way versus new way, old way of industry engaging with doctors, including both commercial and medical is, is more pronounced push mindset, and is driven by you know, CRM and messaging very often. And it as when it comes to technology, the channels are pretty much the same across the board for all pharma, this webinars, emails and video calls or in person calls and that, that that whole approach is less HCP centric. It’s more product centric. And for years, we’ve been discussing, how do we be more how do we become more HCP centered, so COVID kind of accelerated all those conversations. And in this new world, or new way of engaging with doctors, it’s digital first, and in person second, or person interaction second. And it’s driven by three things. It’s driven by content, by video, and by personalization. So, doctors want to interact first with content and a personalized Netflix like platform. And once they show interest or something, then they may be open to talk to a human being over, you know, Zoom like engagement or in person.
Garth Sundem 08:33
Well, and I love your perspective that COVID almost gave permission for HCPs to adjust the way that they interact with pharma. Do you think that this is how HCPs would have preferred to interact with pharma all along? And COVID just gave them the, I don’t know, the permission to create the reality that they want it?
Bozidar Jovicevic 08:57
It’s a great question. I mean, I spend like a lot of time thinking about it. It’s the way I think about it is and I’ve been in pharma for 17 years launching products. Then I was a global digital leader at Novartis and Sanofi and building platforms for both doctors and patients. The way I think about it is pharma hasn’t really invested enough in data analytics and understanding individual physician needs using technology. In a pre-COVID world, there was always a notion of doing that. But incentive was not there because you could you know, have more reps or MSLs and access doctors, you know, like, okay, you know, you don’t need that much data. However, that was never really optimal for doctors, right? Because it wasn’t targeted. You’re quiet. Why do I need to see a rep MSL? Now because, you know, I didn’t. I didn’t show in any way that I’m interested in discussing topic XYZ, right. And so, so what happens is that you in COVID, there was an easy way to say no. Right. And now, in the post COVID world, that behavior is continuing every week, there is a new piece of research yesterday from Indogene research on that. And so, the future of that engage, I still think that the doctors will interact with human beings from the pharma side, let’s simplify, but that interaction has to be informed by their needs. And that’s where, you know, what content did they watch? In the past? You know, what do we what is our data and analytics showing about this doctor? And how do we inform our reps, so our rep becomes an MSL becomes an orchestrator, digital orchestrator, which is a new term, and be much more relevant in those conversations. So that will stay, but it will be much higher quality much more targeted.
Garth Sundem 10:49
It’s almost like pre-COVID, we communicated from the perspective of what we wanted them to know. And post COVID We’re having to communicate from the perspective of what they want to know.
Bozidar Jovicevic 11:02
Exactly, exactly when it was a non-targeted, so people use the term spray and pray versus, you know, super targeted laser-like, and it is like that, you know, you we could get it with a pharma, we’re gonna say we have been in pharma for 17 years. But we could, you know, do that, then it worked. But now that that behavior, McKinsey research shows that there is a permanent behavioral shift Accenture research two weeks ago, confirm permanent behavioral shift, in a sense, the sense that doctors prefer either digital only, or hybrid model of engaging with the industry only 10%, 10 to 12%, actually, in two different pieces of research, say that they want in person or you know, contact with a human being. So
Garth Sundem 11:46
it’s almost like the shift in power that you hear recently in the labor market, where it’s like, all of a sudden employees have power. It used to be that the companies would tell people what their jobs were, and now, employees have power. But anyway, so how does it work? So, let’s talk education streaming and dig into it a little bit. So, what are we talking here? How does education streaming work?
Bozidar Jovicevic 12:07
Yeah, so the model of education streaming, actually, three parts, and we have a nice visual representation of that. So, the first part, we call it educate, the second part is called understand. And the third part is called interact. And that’s where, you know, interaction with a human being comes into play. So, the first part is educated. And in that, in that first step, there is a physician that is sitting on their computer or looking at their mobile, and what they’re interacting with is personalized content on a Netflix like platform that is educational in nature, right? So, they’re not interacting with pharma representative or MSL rep. They’re interacting with content that’s relevant for them. So, let’s say I’m an oncologist. And I’m on a beautiful Netflix like platform that is pharma owned, but it’s not pushing product messages. It’s actually helping me understand the latest trends in breast cancer. And what are the newest treatments? And what are the latest advances? So, I’m there I’m interacting and watching the lectures, I’m getting myself educated, it’s relevant for me. Now, all the data about my behavior as a doctor, go somewhere, and that’s step two, we call it understand. So, there is an I talked about the data also today. So, pharma companies need to understand okay, what is this individual doctor? Now? What is what are they interested in? So, the data about them watching certain breast cancer videos is now it’s coming to the middle part, which we call which is a CDP or a customer data platform. There are a lot of software companies that do that. So, what is happening in the CDP is that data on physicians’ behavior from first party platforms, pharma owned or third party places or Medicaid, Doximity, and others, all comes into one place. That’s step number one, step number two, their individual doctor’s profile is enriched. And then the system actually says well based on based on everything we know about this doctor, the next best action or next best step may be to engage with MSL Alright, so that’s how we come to the third steps. The first step, educate doctors watching personalized content networks like platform second step is processing of the daily data and analytics understanding what they need. And then comes third step, which is interaction and that third step, let’s say that that doctor watch just to kind of connect all this together. Let’s say the doctor watch three videos on breast cancer. Now, the MSL would know well now is the right time to actually talk with them about something related to breast cancer that I want to talk with them about. And that’s like a much more targeted much more relevant conversation with the help of data and technology.
Garth Sundem 14:59
I think What’s really interesting is that in the pre COVID world, your second step that is understand, would have referred to ensuring that HCPs understand your education. But what you’re saying is that your second step of understand is that you are understanding the HCP. And, you know, again, it speaks to the post COVID world where, where Pharma is not just pushing its messages, it’s trying to understand the HCPs needs, and to then supply the messages that are individualized to the HCP. It’s funny how that middle word could mean two very different things. Pre-COVID, it would have meant that the HCP understands you. Post-COVID, it means that you understand the HCP.
Bozidar Jovicevic 15:53
Yes, yeah, I’m really glad that you, you, you’re making this point, because that’s really the core of being HCP centric. And at the end of the day, you know, many other industries have already gone through this process. Like even a decade ago, some more digitally mature industry, Pharma has been more digital immature, industry, but is going through these accelerating lately. And so, we know, for example, from other industries that 80% of decisions we make, as consumers, like, think of buying a new TV, like 80% of decisions that we make, are done before talking to a company representative, right, we have access to tools we have access to education, we know was the best TV that fits our needs based on our research in most cases, right. So, in the same way, that’s happening in pharma for years, but it’s been neglected, which is that most of the prescribing decisions and treatment decisions are made before a doctor sees anyone from the pharma company, right. So, if that’s the case, if the power of accessing information is in doctors’ hands, why not enter that conversation? Why not be the leader with education, aiming is like a modern kind of channel. So that’s really, it’s not nothing new, but it’s relatively new for the district.
Garth Sundem 17:12
Well, and you bring up Netflix too, I mean, it used to be that you would turn on CBS, NBC, and, and whatever, and those channels would tell you what to watch. And now you turn on Netflix, or Amazon or whatever, and you choose what to watch. So, you know, in the same way that Pharma is becoming more HCP centric, the world is becoming more consumer centric. And maybe it’s pharma that needs to catch up.
Bozidar Jovicevic 17:40
Yeah, just think of, you know, many folks may not like this what I say but just think of the word portal, and classical pharma education portal for doctors, you know, all of them that I can say all of them because it was modeled from the big companies, let’s say most of them, they are, you know, simple libraries, non-personalized technology is like five to 10 years old. And at the same time, that same doctor goes on Netflix to your point goes on Amazon Prime, see amazing technology, amazing user interface that’s personalized to their needs. And then goes back to this HCP portal built by pharmas, they’re like, I don’t want to spend too much time here. I cannot find what I need buy. Right? So, it’s very important that consumer level consumer level user experience is something that that doctor experience, doctors experience when interacting with pharma, not just with Netflix and Amazon Prime.
Garth Sundem 18:34
All right, well, consumer level user experience for Pharma. Thanks, Bozey for joining us today. To learn more about how your organization can partner with Evermed to rapidly launch your own Netflix for HCP streaming platform, visit Evermedtv.com. MAPS members, don’t forget to subscribe, and we hope you enjoyed this episode of the Medical Affairs Professional Society Podcast Series: “Elevate”.
602 Park Point Drive, Suite 225, Golden, CO 80401 – +1 303.495.2073
© 2023 Medical Affairs Professional Society (MAPS). All Rights Reserved Worldwide.