As remote work continues, print is as important as ever for biopharmaceutical companies when it comes to reaching a varied audience that may include patients, doctors' offices, researchers, and internal staff.
And yet, for biotech companies operating out of virtual offices or for pharmaceutical companies managing clinical trials remotely, solving for rapidly evolving communications needs opens up supply chain challenges. That's why health care businesses have started turning to global experts to outsource their communications operations: so they can focus on the business at hand.
"People working in the biopharmaceutical industry are looking to improve the lives of people across varying geographies, generations and preferences of (or access to) communication. They're looking to be the first to create solutions for health issues that may present themselves one way today and another way tomorrow," says Christine Salamondra, National Account Manager with the FedEx Office Commercial Sales Organization. "If you can find suppliers with the fewest steps to get from point A to point B, and you can do that reliably across the print and distribution supply chain, it can help bring innovative ideas up front quickly."
Consider all the areas where printed materials are used throughout the industry: public communications, corporate communications, brand identity, education, research and development, investor outreach, and more. But it's not just the message that matters: materials should also be high-quality, secure, and compliant.
FedEx Office can design and print marketing brochures, posters, signs and other materials that are critical to the communication mission of biopharmaceutical companies. And with its deep expertise in printing, communication, and logistics, FedEx Office has the resources to help get products where they need to be, when they need to be there.
Salamondra shared the following advice on how biopharmaceutical companies can make print do more in their clinical studies, go-to-market strategies, office and event signage, and patient outreach.
Enable research and development through clinical trial materials
Printed materials can be a compelling component in the communication mix when it comes to research, while also remaining dependable when access to digital communications isn’t possible. Salamondra says offering a variety of communication options may even encourage more participation in studies. "Multi-channel and multi-faceted communication plans support the needs and drive the success of today’s clinical trial and study environment," she says.
Leading up to the start of a clinical trial, targeted communications (such as direct mail, pamphlets, and kitted materials) sent directly to investigators, study sites, and prospective participants can encourage enrollment. And leveraging the flexibility of FedEx Office solutions can support the printed communication and follow-up needs between the biopharmaceutical company, the investigators, the participants, the federal agencies and the sponsors (just to name a few).
"We are here to help our biopharma customers manage a successful clinical study, and that includes sharing our expertise, global reach, and ideation through innovation," says Salamondra.
Getting a new product into network formularies
To research, develop, and launch a new drug and have it incorporated into health care network formularies, biopharmaceutical companies need to interact with multiple parties, including employees, health care providers, and skilled care staff. An integrated communications campaign can involve input from multiple departments and development partners, using a mix of channels that combine digital and print outreach for provider education.
"As we move into a time where, in particular, biopharma companies are trying to look at more targeted messaging, they need to be able to find a supplier that has the solutions and continual process innovation that can keep up with those needs," says Salamondra.
Designing and delivering office and event signage
Looking ahead, more workers are returning to offices, and more biopharmaceutical businesses, universities, and health care-oriented trade organizations are planning the return of congresses, national sales meetings and trade shows at hotels and convention centers. Communication in printed and graphic form may be in high demand compared to last year, from research posters and scientific demonstrations to product/brand launch promotions, as well as for pandemic-related safety directives.
"FedEx Office has the ability to support the large volume, rapid-response communication needs often required for events – including the newer hybrid styles with increasing needs to create and send materials to remote workers and attendees," says Salamondra. "We can help customers leverage our manufacturing and global distribution network to provide high quality print materials, which can help increase supply chain efficiencies and remove obstacles."
Ongoing patient outreach
Using multiple touchpoints can effectively convey crucial health care information about drug benefits and safety to patients, particularly to different demographics. Consider ongoing outreach around Covid-19 vaccines as just one example. In this case, target audiences are spread across multiple states and geographic regions. Materials need to be customized for local needs and different age groups, and they must be culturally sensitive and presented in multiple languages.
Salamondra says that signage in various health care settings that includes large print and even graphics can be more effective in capturing attention and evoking a response than digital communication alone, which often clutters inboxes and goes unread.
The ability to call upon printing and logistics expertise as needed, yet not tie up company resources on an ongoing basis, can enable biopharma companies to quickly scale communications programs on demand. By entrusting experts with print-related tasks, firms can have the confidence that their care-related communications will be secure and compliant.
Plus, employees don't have to spend their valuable time printing materials from their home or office, which could potentially compromise quality and consistency when it comes to brand standards. "FedEx Office is able to help you scale up, scale down, and be flexible – all with a variety of secure access points that are most convenient for you," says Salamondra.
Encouraging creative communications
The days of magazines and pamphlets shared at a doctor's office may be numbered. But with a little creativity, solutions are easily at hand. FedEx Office can work with health care businesses to convert various enrollment, investigator/participant and close-out materials such as mini protocols, pocket guides, training materials and graphics with laminated covers that are quick and easy to sanitize.
Salamondra says the team at FedEx Office works with clients to understand their goals and how their organizations are changing, and seeks to find innovative ways they can support those needs. "We focus heavily on elevating the customer experience and relationship, fostering innovative idea creation and problem solving during our consultations," she says.
Strong communication starts with print
Business continuity in biopharma isn’t a maybe—it's a must. While many biopharmaceutical companies have been focusing their attention and resources on the pandemic, many more are working on other equally essential areas in health care.
As those pipelines move forward and industry innovation continues to work to improve patient outcomes, it's imperative to include print communication. With print, vital information can be conveyed to the people who need it most, when they need it most.
To learn more about how FedEx Office can help your biopharma business, visit fedex.com/businesssolutions today.