Life Science Marketing Group
NCBiotech's new Life Science Marketing Group addresses key challenges that marketing professionals face through educational programming and by building a strong support network for sharing insights and expertise.
This group is supported by NCBiotech's Corporate Communications team.
August 2021 - Details coming soon.
Life sciences companies are beginning to host hybrid events that have both in-person and virtual components. These events are challenging, requiring careful planning and flawless execution to maximize engagement opportunities with both audiences.
Learn how to adapt your event strategy for this new format, which will likely become the new norm. Our panel discussion covered:
- Setting realistic goals
- Planning engaging content
- Making the in-person audience feel safe
- Staffing needs
- Establishing metrics for success
- Avoiding common pitfalls
Meet the Panelists
Pam Putz is managing director at EBD Group. Her organization recently hosted the ChinaBio Partnering Forum, a hybrid event.
Joy Thomas is the manager, site training solutions and global events at IQVIA. Her team has embraced the hybrid event format to continue to service clients during the pandemic.
Jason Daniels is an account director at Holt Environments. He and his team continue to help life sciences companies produce hybrid events by building engaging exhibits and content.
Jim Hoyle is president and CEO of Audio and Light, Inc. His team provides audiovisual production services as well as equipment rentals for hybrid events.
Account-based marketing (ABM) is a go-to-market approach for business-to-business (B2B) organizations throughout a customer lifecycle, from awareness through advocacy. ABM can help life sciences companies build stronger relationships with customers, reduce sales cycles, and increase marketing return on investment (ROI).
Eighty-seven percent of B2B marketers surveyed reported that ABM initatives outperformed other marketing investments in terms of ROI (Source: ITSMA survey).
Method Savvy shared their expertise in helping healthcare and life sciences companies adopt ABM. The presentation covered:
- Which organizations are best suited for ABM
- Who in the organization owns ABM
- How ABM integrates the marketing, sales and customer success functions
- How to know if ABM is successful
- Pros and cons for adopting ABM
Devin Kelley is the vice president of client services at Method Savvy, a marketing consultancy located in downtown Durham. He and his team help ambitious leaders find better ways to grow their brands and businesses.
A proud Elon University alum, Devin has led Method Savvy’s business development and accounts team for nearly a decade. He draws upon his knowledge and experience in digital communications, advertising strategies, and e-commerce as host of the Marketing Behind the Curtain podcast.
Search engine optimization (SEO) helps companies achieve better search engine rankings. It focuses on making meaningful changes to your website to attract new, qualified visitors while improving site usability. Updates to a website’s content structure around keywords and phrases can yield significant results. However, SEO is an ongoing process, not a one-time activity.
The program covered SEO fundamentals including:
- SEO terminology
- Content ranking factors
- Tools for researching keywords
- Tips for increasing your site’s authority, trustworthiness and quality
- How to avoid SEO penalties
- Strategies for optimizing laptop and mobile traffic
- Staying current as SEO evolves
Meet the Speaker
Mackenzie Farone is the senior corporate communications manager for Greiner Bio-One North America, Inc., a manufacturer of high-quality laboratory and research plasticware. She is responsible for creating and implementing the inbound brand strategy, optimizing the company and e-commerce websites, social media marketing and media relations.
Mackenzie earned a bachelor’s degree in international business management and a Master of Business Administration degree from the Rowland School of Business at Point Park University in Pittsburgh.
Podcasting is a popular marketing tactic among life sciences companies because it provides an opportunity to engage, educate and entertain prospects and customers on relevant topics. But, what does it take to produce high-quality, compelling content that will transform listeners into avid fans?
Our panel of podcast experts shared their experiences and tips on:
- How to select a format and plan episodes and topics
- Criteria for selecting the best podcast guests for interviews
- Equipment required for recording and editing
- Best ways to promote podcasts
- How to avoid the most common pitfalls
Moderator and Panelists
Jim Shamp is the director of public relations for NCBiotech. He writes and edits news and other Web copy, brochures and other materials for NCBiotech and supports the Corporate Communications marketing and media relations activities.
Jim will moderate this panel discussion.
Janice Person is the CEO and founder of Grounded Communications. Her company is a communications consultancy offering strategic planning, public speaking and content creation.
Janice's podcast, Grounded by the Farm, enables listeners to join food conversations with the farmers who produce it. Previously, she hosted the podcast Ag Over Easy focused on a range of topics from on-farm technology to crop marketing for Bayer's Channel brand of corn seed.
Grant Belgard is the chief scientist and CEO of The Bioinformatics CRO, a contract research organization and consultancy that provides bioinformatics support in the genomics space to biotechs.
Grant's podcast, The Bioinformatics CRO Podcast, hosts scientists to discuss topics across biomedical research and to explore what influenced who they are.
Janet Kennedy is the senior digital brand manager at Spencer Health Solutions. The company makes an at-home medication smart hub that helps with patient adherence to medication and provides telehealth support to keep patients and care teams connected.
Janet's podcast, Get Social Health, focuses on the use social media in healthcare by marketers, digital strategists, physicians, nurses, hospitals, e-Patients and vendors. Janet also hosts the "People Always, Patients Sometimes" podcast for Spencer Health Solutions.
Podcasting Flyer from Janice Person
Life sciences marketers must reach their target audiences efficiently and effectively. Some marketers are adopting agile marketing as a way to boost their productivity in producing valuable marketing deliverables.
In this session, we discussed:
- How an uncertain world has changed the way marketers respond to customers
- Why agile marketing is more of a cultural shift than a process
- How frameworks like scrums and kanban help marketers to become more agile
- Five easy ways to get started with agile marketing.
This presentation included a case study from a Charlotte-based healthcare improvement company as well as a fun breakout activity to experience agile marketing firsthand.
Stacey Ackerman is the founder of Agilify Coaching & Training, which helps marketers learn and apply agile marketing. Stacey spent more than 15 years as a marketer prior launching her career in agile. She has trained and coached many companies on how to transform their culture to become more customer-centric and agile.
Stacey is a frequent speaker at industry conferences and a contributing author for MarTech Today. She earned her Masters of Arts degree in organizational management from Concord University - St. Paul and a bachelor's degree in journalism and mass communications from the University of Minnesota Twin Cities.
Achieving Better Outcomes While Saving Time and Money
Marketing automation involves the use of technology to manage marketing processes and campaigns across multiple channels (i.e., email, webpages, social media and text). It helps life sciences companies to achieve productivity gains by replacing repetitive manual processes with automated solutions.
Marketing automation also allows marketers to set the journey for prospective customers and provides data and insights to optimize campaign performance.
This presentation provided several success stories to inspire your thinking as well as tips for getting started with marketing automation.
Milena Mitova is the senior manager of marketing operations and automation at Bausch Health, Inc. in Princeton, New Jersey. She is an award-winning marketing technologist who has used automation over the past 15 years to deliver business results.
She enjoys sharing her strategic and tactical expertise in marketing operations, campaign management and lead generation via her blog, speaking at conferences and as a consultant.
Milena earned her master's in business administration degree at the Whitman School of Management at Syracuse University.
During this meeting, we shared the results of our marketing survey which explores how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted marketing in 2020.
After sharing the survey results, participants joined one of four small groups for a lively discussion on:
- Greatest marketing challenge to tackle in 2021
- Success stories from 2020
- Best marketing tools adopted during the pandemic
- Best practices for tracking marketing metrics
Mark Hozza is the founder and president of Dragonfly Life Science Consulting in Research Triangle Park (RTP). He has spent the majority of his career helping companies realize their full commercial potential. Mark is a board member and head of the RTP chapter of the Sales and Marketing Professionals in Science.
He earned his master's degrees in pharmacology from the State University of New York Upstate Medical University and a bachelor's of science degree in bioengineering from Syracuse University.
Content marketing has allowed us to educate, inform and entertain our audiences. But, how is content marketing evolving? And, how do life science marketers go about developing content that will continue to build brand awareness and generate qualified leads?
This presentation covered:
- How the role of content marketer is evolving
- Audience engagement with content
- End-to-end integration of business strategy, content and metrics
- Content management best practices
Whether you are in the midst of developing a content strategy or seeking to interject fresh ideas into your current content strategy, this presentation provided insights to help you achieve success.
Ayaz Malik, MBA, is an enterprise marketing excellence manager at Roche Diagnostics in Indianapolis. He has spent the majority of his career building, transforming and enabling marketing communications teams with a focus on healthcare and medical devices. His passion is marketing in the digital era and evolving marketing roles in highly matrixed organizations. Ayaz is a frequent speaker at marketing conferences.
He earned a master's degrees in business administration from the University of Arizona's Eller College of Management and a bachelor's degree in fine arts in visual communications from Indiana University.
Is your company prepared to handle a crisis? Whether it’s a lawsuit, product recall, adverse event, accident or natural disaster, you and your company need to be ready. Otherwise your corporate reputation, brand and bottom line are likely to pay a very heavy price. And If you think a crisis won’t happen at your company, think again. It’s really not a matter of whether, but when.
This program explored:
- What constitutes a crisis in 2020
- How to respond when a crisis occurs
- How to avoid the pitfalls that can transform a manageable situation into a marketing disaster.
In the Digital Age, the important of being ready to respond effectively within minutes has never been greater.
Roger Friedensen, MA, APR, is a founding partner of Forge Communications, a strategic communications firm in Raleigh. Roger has managed an array of strategic marketing communication programs for clients in ag tech, industrial biosciences, healthcare and pharmaceuticals. Some of his specialties include brand/reputation design and management, content development, public relations, crisis communications, media relations, and digital communications. Roger is a visiting instructor at North Carolina State University's Department of Communication Studies and a frequent speaker at conferences. He earned bachelor's and master's degrees in speech communication from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Bryant Haskins, APR, is a strategic communications counselor and founder of Otter Creek Communications. He has almost four decades of experience in global communications and engagement, primarily for pharmaceutical clients. He provides strategic counsel to organizations during periods of crisis or significant change. Bryant helps corporations and business leaders to increase the effectiveness of their messages and the impact of their delivery. He is also a regular freelance writer and consultant for NCBiotech. Bryant earned a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and a photography degree from Randolph Community College.
Videos are an important marketing tool for life sciences companies. They can make product demos, executive interviews, and case studies more inviting and memorable. They have the potential for boosting engagement on social channels, improving search engine results, and increasing sales.
Smartphones are making it easier to capture, edit, and share videos. However, with 50% of videos being consumed on mobile devices, marketers must develop a flexible video strategy optimized for laptop, tablet, and mobile consumption. If you are seeking advice on how to integrate more videos into your marketing, attend this program. Gain practical information on developing your video strategy and discover the best practices and tips for achieving excellent results.
Alexander Ferguson is the founder and CEO of Your Local Studio, a video production company based in Cary. His company provides video services that help healthcare and life sciences companies engage with customers and prospects.
Alexander and his team co-authored a book entitled "The Marketer's Guide to Video: Your Complete Resource to Making Marketing Videos."
The virtual reality industry is projected to grow to $34 billion by 2022. Virtual reality is a groundbreaking technology and represents the next major technology shift after web and mobile devices. It allows marketers to provide a new, immersive experience for customers to engage with products and services.
How are life science companies utilizing this technology to create engaging, interactive experiences? Has the COVID-19 pandemic made virtual reality a more important marketing tool as corporate marketers struggle with being socially distant from customers and potential customers? Attendees heard from two local virtual reality corporate leaders. They shared success stories on how life science companies are integrating virtual reality into their marketing mix.
Jason Cooper is the chief digital officer at Horizon Productions. Jason has helped evolve this 38-year-old, Emmy award-winning production company into a premier virtual and augmented reality provider. Jason leads Horizon's team that focuses on the non-gaming applications of virtual reality/augmented reality – research, education, training, marketing, filmmaking and real-time immersive experiences for health care, life sciences and other industries.
Joshua Setzer is the CEO and co-founder of Lucid Dream VR. Fascinated by the intersection of creativity and technology, Joshua’s professional background includes experience in design, manufacturing, and corporate sales training. As a passionate entrepreneur, Joshua loves building great businesses that challenge employees and customers to continuously grow.
There is real opportunity for marketing and innovation to have a significant impact across the organization. In today’s fast-moving world that is a necessity. For the May program, Tom Triumph covered the five fundamental pillars of every organization and how marketing professionals can positively impact the entire organization.
Real-world examples and puzzles illustrated how to:
- Understand how intentional evolution leads to success
- Discover what NASA taught us about creative genius
- Identify areas in your company where you can compound improvement
- Change your perception of the difficulties you encounter in work and life
Thomas Triumph helps companies grow by helping them reinvent their business, technology and product development. Along the way he has helped large Fortune 500 organizations act nimbly and small, entrepreneurial companies scale. He has been a participant in two global technology revolutions and has been part of some remarkable success stories and some misfires. He is the author of the book Evolve or Die: Lessons for World-Class Innovation & Creativity.
Tom fulfilled a childhood dream of living aboard an ocean research ship and tending to the mini-sub (Cousteau was on the Board) and has wrestled in the Olympic trials. He resides in North Carolina and is an ultra runner.
Social media is an integral part of today’s life science marketing programs. Now more than ever brands are rarely successful without a strong social media presence. Social media provides an opportunity to engage with important audiences and helps to build strong relationships with your brand.
However, it is difficult for marketers to keep up with all that is happening in the ever-evolving digital landscape. This session covered practical tips and tricks to maximize results of your social media efforts:
- Tactics for gaining high visibility on popular social platforms
- Marrying content marketing and social media marketing and why it’s important to have both
- The types of content that are resonating with modern audiences
- Tracking relevant key performance indicators to measure ROI
At some point, all marketing professionals will be involved in launching a new product or service. Product launches are an important opportunity. If done well, a product launch can generate revenue, create a competitive edge, and build trust with your target market.
This program detailed a tried-and-tested method for launching innovation. In this presentation, we covered:
- Discussing new marketing and sales strategies for launching innovative products
- Challenging conventional thinking and provide new strategies and tactics
- Exploring the cost and risks of getting it wrong
- Providing a framework for anticipating and recovering from inevitable missteps
Chris Morrison is the founder of ViaVerus, a life science and healthcare consulting company focused on the strategy of introducing new products to market. Prior to launching ViaVerus, Chris headed sales and marketing at Expression Analysis, a genomic services company. Earlier in his career, he held various sales and business development roles at healthcare and medtech companies. Chris earned a bachelor of science degree in engineering at the University of Vermont.
Whether you are having coffee with a local reporter or helping a company executive prepare for an interview with a national news outlet, engaging with the media presents a crucial opportunity to deliver strategic business messages to key stakeholders. With preparation and practice, you can develop strong relationships with the media and guide conversations to achieve optimal outcomes.
During this session, the do’s and don’ts for interview preparation and management, including proper research, appropriate body language, the use of strategic techniques to successfully deliver key messages, as well as how to bring mainstream relevance to technical information were discussed.
Karyn Ostrom is an account director based in the Raleigh office of G&S Business Communications, where she supports corporate communications for one of the agency’s key agribusiness clients. In this role, she helps her client navigate the changing media landscape and advises on issues management and profile-raising media opportunities. Prior to joining G&S in 2012, Karyn advised companies in the corporate legal and emergency management sectors. She holds a Master of Science degree in journalism from Columbia University.
Websites are a critical branding and sales tool. They often create the first impression that visitors will have of your company and have the power to make or break your reputation. It’s imperative to know your audience, have a measurement plan in place and have stakeholder buy-in in order to be successful online.
Whether you are launching a new website or looking to refresh your current website, attend this program to gain insights on website development and analytics. Get the answers to all your questions on how to create a great user experience while optimizing for search engines and mobile-friendliness.
Gary Towning, executive vice president of digital services, Trone Brand Energy
Laura Flugga, director of digital experience, Trone Brand Energy
Innovation is the key to growth. Thus, life science marketers must dedicate some time and effort to identify opportunities for innovation.
Fun-filled exercises inspired thinking by using real-world examples of marketing innovations. Small teams were created to brainstorm, prioritize, and unlock keys to success for innovating marketing programs for the new year.
Life science marketers must be adept at product naming. However, naming new products and services can be challenging. How do you develop a name that fits with the company brand and properly conveys the product brand? How do you ensure that regulatory requirements are met?
Workshop attendees learned the art and science of naming and discovered the process and timelines for gaining company stakeholder buy-in and clearing regulatory hurdles. Naming strategies, global linguistic considerations, legal hurdles, and market research techniques to develop optimal names were explored to conceptualize brand strengthening. The Life Science Marketing group also explored differences in product naming for biotech/pharma vs. medical devices vs. animal health.
Clayton is president and CEO of Brandsymbol, headquartered in Matthews, North Carolina. He began his career in 1993 with Addison Whitney in Charlotte, where he developed comprehensive industry knowledge while working with some of the world’s largest companies. He helped Addison Whitney develop some of the world’s most memorable brands such as Advair, Escalade, and Outlook. Quickly rising to the rank of president and CEO, Clayton turned Addison Whitney into one of the top 10 branding agencies in the world. After the sale of Addison Whitney, Clayton revitalized his branding process with Brandsymbol. Clayton is a graduate of UNC Asheville.
Ben is a senior brand consultant at Brandsymbol. He helps clients establish project objectives and manages resources to achieve optimal results. He leads client projects involving branding strategy, research, nonproprietary and brand naming, and more for pharmaceutical, biotech, and medical device companies. Ben earned a bachelor’s degree from the Bloch School of Business at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.
Networking event for life science marketing professionals was held at Brier Creek Carolina Ale Houses. Attendees were encouraged to mingle and discuss their individual marketing challenges and successes and learn about our fall program lineup.
This session covered aspects of market research and why is a critical tool for life science companies at every stage of growth. It helps companies to:
- Understand and monitor the competitive landscape
- Establish baseline requirements and pricing for products and services
- Gain insight into customers' receptivity to current and future offerings
- Come and learn basic primary and secondary market research techniques to get to the data and insights needed to make informed business decisions. Discover how to tap into affordable, readily available market research resources to support all stages of the product/service lifecycle.
Amy DeWinter, founder of Ascenda Medical Marketing, is a seasoned medical marketing professional with more than 20 years of experience in both startups and established company environments. She has a strong background in emerging technologies and has used market research to plan product launches and business development ventures.
Amy has successfully assisted multiple organizations in everything from product naming to clinician training programs and market planning. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of San Diego.
Lori Melliere, is the outreach and client services librarian with Life Science Intelligence (LSI) at NCBiotech. LSI works with North Carolina's life science entrepreneurs, delivering targeted market and scientific insight needed to inform strategic decisions. Lori helps clients with their research needs by connecting them with LSI's resources and expertise.
Lori obtained her Master of Science degree in library science, and a master's degree in public administration from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
The organization of a marketing department must evolve as a company moves from startup through various stages of growth.
Insights from a medtech expert, Brian Regan, touched on the ideal marketing structure for each stage of a company's life cycle. Clearly defining roles and responsibilities is crucial for optimal performance, along with strategic marketing practices for setting and achieving goals at each stage of a startup.
As vice president of marketing and development at TearScience, Brian led his marketing team from a few-person startup through company acquisition when TearScience was sold to Johnson & Johnson. Brian has held a variety of marketing and sales leadership positions at medtech companies. He earned his MBA at Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management.
Whether your company is a small biotech startup or an established pharmaceutical company, brand building is important. Strong brands can:
- Differentiate an offering from the competition
- Build recognition, credibility & confidence
- Boost customer preference & loyalty
- Help attract investors & top talent
This panel of experts shared their insights on building a brand strategy from scratch and help us evaluate if it’s time for a brand refresh. Learn the best practices for maximizing your brand.
This session was all about lead generation. Attendees learned how to:
- Set your lead generation strategy based on your overall marketing goals
- Measure ROI on lead generation campaign
- Employ different lead generation tactics by market segment
- Analyze and use data to continually improve your efforts
Karen is a talented and experienced marketing professional who has held positions in a diverse array of organizations. For the past 13 years, Karen has worked for life science and biotech fims, specializing on planning and implementing marketing initiatives. She has worked with industry leaders such as IQVIA, Expression Analysis, Metabolon and Epicypher.