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The complete guide to inbound marketing for life science companies

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Twenty years ago, if you’d told marketers they’d be able to tweak campaigns based on their results in real-time, let alone use digital systems to provide closed-loop reporting that identifies which activities generate the most leads, sales opportunities and customers (and therefore yield the highest return on investment (ROI)), then they’d have laughed – and that’s only the start of it!

Undoubtedly, the digital revolution has changed marketing forever. It used to be the case that marketers could spend the bulk of their time creating and buying ads and other awareness-building elements, which would be projected at the masses or pushed via direct mail and brochures towards their prospects. However, the days of the all-powerful television ads, print ads, mass direct mailshots and unsegmented email blasts have gone.

Why is this?

Well, these days many consumers are tuning out interruptive marketing messages and cold calls. Instead, they are turning to the internet to research and investigate products and services on their own terms. As such, the ‘outbound’ techniques of the past are falling out of favour. Put simply, they are usually poorly targeted, cost too much money, and often deliver poor results. What’s more, it’s notoriously difficult to track their performance and assess the ROI they deliver.

So, what’s the solution?

In a nutshell, the goal of inbound marketing is to offer relevant and valuable content to pull your prospects naturally towards you, your company and the services or products you offer, via search engines, social media, email marketing and other digital tactics.

In this eBook, we’ll look at why inbound marketing is so well suited to the life science sector and why now truly is the time to bring inbound into your marketing strategy. We’ll explore the inbound marketing methodology in more detail, including the different elements that make up the approach, and provide a proven system for how you can develop an inbound marketing campaign that’s guaranteed to deliver results.

If traditional outbound marketing is like using a megaphone to broadcast to the market, then inbound is like marketing to specific segments using a magnet.

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Why you need to change your marketing strategy

The internet has revolutionised many aspects of our lives – the way in which we discover and buy products and services is no exception.

Buyer behaviour has evolved

A few decades ago, if a consumer wanted to purchase a particular product, they’d have probably visited their local supplier, been influenced by a salesperson’s pitch or sales brochure, and made their decision there and then.

Today, much of the information consumers need to make buying decisions is available online. From consumer information websites through to product review forums, most of the info they need is just a Google search away.

What’s more, thanks to social media sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn, our prospects are much more aware of the buying habits of their friends and colleagues too. This means that their buying process starts well before they ever engage with a salesperson.

Instead, buyers are increasingly doing their own online research, meaning that sales teams no longer hold all the cards. This puts modern consumers in more control of their purchasing decisions than ever before. Indeed, 67% of the average buyer’s journey is now done digitally [1], with as much as 90% of the average buyer’s decision completed before they speak directly to a supplier [2].

Interruptive messaging is delivering poor ROI

For marketers, this change in buyer behaviour means that we’re losing the battle for customer attention, an unfortunate truth that’s reflected in the disappointing ROI that’s routinely offered by traditional interruptive tactics.

Presented with an onslaught of advertising and sales messages, buyers have become adept at ignoring messages they don’t want to receive, which we explore in more detail on the next page.

Cold calling is losing its effectiveness

  • 90% of B2B decision makers do not respond to cold sales outreach [3]
  • Just 1% of cold calls result in a meeting [3]
  • It takes sales teams on average 18 attempts to reach a prospect [4]

Email open rates continue to fall industry wide

  • Most cold email campaigns struggle to achieve open rates of 20% [5]
  • In the healthcare sector, B2B email click-through rates are often lower than 3% [5]
  • For unsegmented and purchased email lists, these numbers continue to drop [5]

Paid banner ads are increasingly ineffective

  • Click-through rates averaged a dismal 0.05% in 2018 [6]
  • As a result, banner ads should be seen more as a brand awareness tool (rather than lead generation)

The decline of paid banner ad click-through rates

The decline of paid banner ad click-through rates graph

Source: A BioStrata analysis of data from Smart Insights [6]

Life science marketers need a new toolkit

The way in which consumers buy has evolved, and that means that the way in which companies sell and market has to change too.

Inbound marketing is a new approach to marketing that’s designed to leverage these changes in consumers’ buying habits. Rather than relying on interruptive outbound tactics, inbound marketing is about creating valuable online content that’s so interesting, useful and engaging, your customers can’t help but consume it.

With inbound, you don’t pursue customers, they come to you, by finding and engaging with your content. So instead of buying expensive email lists to send cold emails or using cold calling, inbound marketing focuses on creating strategically-designed, educational content that pulls prospective customers towards your website where they can learn more about what you can offer them, on their own terms.

By publishing and sharing content that helps your potential buyers understand their problems and how they can be solved, your brand becomes the go-to authority on that specific challenge. This means that, when the time comes to do something about that particular pain point, your brand is the trusted source they can rely on. And with each additional piece of content they consume, your customers become increasingly qualified as leads until they call you (or they raise their hand signalling that they are ready to be called by you).

The benefits of inbound marketing

With the right strategy and exceptional content, companies can:

  • Deliver real value to your customers and prospects by sharing educational, informative, inspiring and entertaining content, as opposed to using poorly targeted ‘interruption’ tactics and overt sales messages
  • Build a direct audience and rely less on paid-for media
  • Improve organic search engine rankings through strategic keyword usage
  • Nurture prospects through the sales cycle using well-targeted and welltimed content through effective lead nurturing
  • Track and demonstrate ROI much more easily
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Why Inbound marketing is perfectly suited to the Life Science sector

Inbound marketing is delivering outstanding results across a wide range of industries, but it’s particularly well suited for companies in the life science sector. But why?

Scientists love to learn, discover and improve

Scientists, healthcare specialists and other life science professionals can be a sceptical bunch. After all, they’re predisposed to questioning the trustworthiness of new information, and rarely take things at face value.

This means that, when it comes to making purchasing decisions, scientific buyers can often be cynical about sales messages and harder to reach using traditional interruptive marketing approaches. Instead, they prefer to do their own research and use balanced information and cold, hard data to guide their choices, as well as recommendations from their trusted peers.

So where do scientific buyers turn to find this information? Like the rest of us, they tend to start with a general web search. Indeed, life scientists spend on average 15 hours online every week accessing content related to their research, and around a quarter of this time is devoted to finding information on products and services [7].

Preferred online sources of information when learning about products and services


Source: BioInformatics LLC [8]

Preferred content types and information sources

From webinars to application notes, videos to eBooks, blogs, articles, and everything in between, scientists are using online content to solve their challenges and address their pain points. While the more established types of online content are among the most popular sources of product information, with 84% of researchers using online trade media publications to find product information [7], new types of content are playing an increasingly important role. Indeed, around half of North American scientists report watching webinars to learn about products or services.

Social media is also playing an increasingly important role in the way life science buyers access information. Over two-thirds of researchers use scientific social media sites to learn about products and services [7] and 44% of life scientists follow other scientists online [9]. And when they find a useful piece of content, they’ll share it. In fact, researchers are significantly more likely to read online content that’s been shared by a colleague than that shared by a vendor.

Inbound marketing is perfectly aligned with scientific buyers

The way scientific buyers actively seek out information, data and insight, and often use online content to research solutions before making a decision, is what makes inbound marketing so well suited to the life science sector.

By identifying your customers’ pain points and understanding how they’re searching for solutions to their challenges, you can leverage inbound marketing and sales to drive an increase in web visitors, leads, customers and revenue. In short, inbound marketing is perfectly suited to the life science sector and it’s already delivering remarkable results, as highlighted by a recent case study from Aptuit, a Contract Research Organisation providing a range of services to pharma and biotech companies.

Case Study: How inbound marketing delivered results for Aptuit


Increase in website traffic


Increase in new leads generated

$3 million

In new sales revenue delivered


Generated for every $1 invested

One life science innovator reaping the rewards of inbound marketing is Aptuit. In 2016, they chose to partner with BioStrata to plan and execute an inbound campaign that would achieve their commercial goals.

The opportunity

The CRO services sector is predicted to grow from an estimated $45 billion in 2017 to nearly $60 billion by 2020. Keen to capitalise on this growing market, Aptuit sought to increase awareness of its contract research services, generate more high-quality leads and ultimately, close more customers.

The challenge

Aptuit had previously relied on traditional outbound marketing and sales activities to raise awareness and change market perceptions, with limited success. These tactics included print advertising, trade show attendance, cold email blasts and a heavy reliance on bottom-of-the-funnel literature (e.g. sales brochures). Aptuit’s website, which focused heavily on the company’s packaging services and was not built to generate highly-qualified leads, also needed an overhaul.

The strategy

To increase awareness, generate more leads and drive growth, the Aptuit leadership team brought in a new marketing team with experience in digital and inbound marketing to change how the company promoted and marketed its services. BioStrata was engaged to provide strategic input and executional support to the programme. BioStrata worked with Aptuit’s marketing team to:

  • Identify the market segment that would generate the best possible ROI
  • Develop an inbound marketing strategy focused around a key buyer persona within this target market
  • Create a high-quality content offer (an eBook) aligned with this buyer persona’s pain points and goals
  • Attract this persona to the Aptuit website through keyword-optimised blog posts, an effective social media strategy and email marketing to the Aptuit contact database
  • Convert these visitors into marketing qualified leads through effective calls-toaction and optimised landing pages

The results:

As well as building awareness of Aptuit’s contract research services and positioning their experts as thought leaders in the field, the campaign increased website visits by 1600% and generated 750% more new leads in just six months. These new leads delivered over $3 million in sales revenue, representing an ROI of over $50 for every $1 invested in the campaign.


How Inbound Marketing works

You’ve seen how inbound marketing can deliver outstanding results for businesses in the life science sector. But how does it work, and what are the key steps involved?

The inbound methodology

Inbound marketing is designed to raise awareness of your products and services by attracting visitors to your website, before converting them into leads and nurturing them along their buying journey into customers by using strategically-aligned content. How do we do this?

First, we attract visitors to your site by creating engaging content that addresses your customers’ pain points, goals, frustrations and needs.

Next, we connect with these prospects by offering them high-value content, housed behind a form, converting them into leads for you to re-market to. As part of this process, we engage with these leads on an ongoing basis, providing them with useful information based on their actions, interests and browsing behaviour. These interactions help to move your potential customers along the buying process.

Finally, we continue to delight your customers with ridiculously good content and customer service long after they’ve become customers, in order to turn them into fans of your brand who will promote you to their colleagues. And thus, the virtuous cycle continues.


Just like a wheel, by applying more force in the areas that will have the biggest impact, and reducing friction by overcoming specific pain-points, you can build momentum and make the whole cycle turn faster.

Attracting visitors

Your prospects are searching online for solutions to their challenges – and the attract stage of the inbound process is all about drawing them to your website using engaging content. By publishing keyword-rich blog posts that discuss your ideal customers’ pain points, goals, frustrations and needs, you’ll feature more prominently on search engine results pages for the shortand long-tail search terms your prospects are using online. What’s more, by promoting your content using the social media channels your ideal buyers are using, you’ll be able to further extend your reach.

Converting visitors

Using compelling calls-to-actions (CTAs) on the content you use to attract visitors, you can nudge your visitors towards other high-value content such as eBooks, whitepapers and infographics that are perfectly aligned to their needs. By gating these irresistible content items behind landing pages and forms designed to capture their contact details, you’ll turn your visitors into leads.

Nurturing leads

It’s unlikely your leads will be ready to buy from you (or anyone else) straight away. Once they’ve become aware of their problem or set their goal in mind, they’ll want to research and consider their options before deciding on a product or service that meets their needs. To turn your leads into customers using inbound, you’ll use a mix of awareness, consideration and decision stage content to nurture your prospect along their buying journey. And by monitoring how your leads are engaging with your content online, you’ll be able to understand where they are on this journey and nudge them closer to becoming customers by using a variety of content forms mapped against different stages of the buyers’ journey. By ensuring this content is always educational, engaging and entertaining – and not ‘salesy’ – you’ll naturally build a relationship based on trust (while developing a marketing and sales process designed to shorten sales cycles and make it easier to close deals). Then, when the time is right for them to buy, it’s only you they’ll turn to.

Closing sales

During the inbound marketing process, some visitors and leads may be providing signals that they’re potentially ready to buy (e.g. by downloading a piece of decision-stage content or filling in a form requesting a sales consultation). Depending on what you’re selling and how you’re selling it, the way you’ll close your customers will differ slightly.

For ecommerce sales, you’ll be looking to nudge your prospects to your buying page. To do this, you might want to use content that demonstrates how other customers have benefited from their purchases or perhaps you’ll provide offers and promotions tailored to their needs. Alternatively, if your sales process requires your customer to interact with a sales rep (for example, as it typical for more substantial high-ticket products or services common in the life science sector), your nurturing efforts may be focused more around qualifying your leads, and passing high quality prospects to your sales team to follow-up with and close.

Delighting customers

You should also aim to turn your customers into promoters of your brand by treating them with care and continuing to delight them with irresistible content. Perhaps they require instructional posters for the laboratory, user guides, service support information booklets, or infographics/reports on the latest trends in their area of science. By continuing to delight your existing customers with new and engaging content, they’ll feel valued, listened to and supported, and will be more likely to promote you to their peers.

The difference between inbound and content marketing

The terms inbound marketing and content marketing are often used interchangeably, but for us, there’s an important difference. Content marketing generally refers to the use of content to generate awareness, develop trust and build an audience. Inbound marketing, on the other hand, is about strategically using content to nurture prospects through the sales funnel to generate high quality leads and customers.

Of course, high-quality content plays an essential role in both approaches, but with inbound, the ultimate goal is to generate leads, turn them into customers and deliver quantifiable ROI in terms of sales generated.

Mapping your content to the buyer’s journey

Content underpins the inbound methodology: it’s used to attract prospects to your website, convert them into leads and nurture them until they’re ready to buy. However, for it to truly resonate, it must be correctly aligned with the awareness, consideration and decision stages of the buyer’s journey.

While content produced to target any buying stage can ultimately attract prospects to your website (i.e. the attract phase of the inbound methodology), your consideration and decision stage content will have additional power when used as part of your lead nurturing processes (i.e. to engage and help close your prospects as customers). As an example, here’s how you might map your content to these stages when targeting a researcher looking for a way to improve their qPCR experiments.


Content types:

  • Research reports
  • Ebooks and whitepapers
  • Articles and blog posts
  • Technical tips and tricks guides
  • Troubleshooting guides

Example: "Ten common qPCR issues (and how to fix them)."



Content types:

  • Application notes
  • Webinars
  • Buying guides

Example: "How to solve qPCR dye issues - a comparison of the options available."



Content types:

  • Case studies
  • Brochures and product collateral
  • Cost/benefit/feature comparisons
  • Demonstration videos

Example: "Case study: How qPCR Dye X delivers the best data for application Y."

Choosing appropriate content for your inbound campaign

The content you use as part of your inbound campaign will primarily be directed by the stage of the buyer’s journey you’re targeting. But what types of content should you use?

Awareness-stage content

Initially, it’s unlikely your prospect will be wedded to any single vendor, having only just realised there’s a problem they need to address or an opportunity they can capitalise upon. At this stage, any research they’ll be doing will be around gaining a better understanding of their challenge or opportunity. You may even need to open their eyes to the possibilities available.

Here, we recommend content that educates, informs and inspires your prospects – but don’t sell. In fact, you might not even mention your company’s products or services directly. The aim is to position your team as experts in your field, delivering real value to your prospects through high quality content, such as eBooks, reports, whitepapers, infographics, blogs and articles.

Consideration-stage content

By now the customer has identified the challenge or opportunity in more detail, so they will be searching for more practical information about how to solve their problem. They’ll also be starting to consider the available options.

The best content to create at this point includes comparative guides (designed to compare the technologies or services available and highlighting where yours performs best), buying guides (to help shortlist the best options) and showcase pieces (such as application notes, technical articles and whitepapers). Showcase pieces should demonstrate that new technologies exist that have been designed to make customer’s work or research more accurate, cost-effective, and/or easier (including the benefits of your specific offering).

Decision-stage content

At the decision stage, the customer has defined the problem and identified a likely solution. Their research will be focused on working through a shortlist of just a few potential suitors.

As such, they’ll likely turn to reviews and endorsements, as well as bottom-of-the- funnel content such as vendor comparisons, case studies, brochures and free trials or demos, to gather insight on how a given solution will perform.

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The fundamental elements of an effective inbound campaign

Inbound marketing relies on a number of key elements to be successful, which must be orchestrated in concert to deliver results.


Pivotal to the success of any inbound campaign is a well-planned content strategy. It’s important to start by developing your buyer personas and mapping out their buyer journeys against your sales process. And remember, for your campaign to resonate with real buyers, your personas should be based on real-world information wherever possible (e.g. customer interviews, online surveys etc.). Once you’ve defined your ideal customers, as well as the challenges your products and services will help them overcome, you’ll need to identify the types of content they’ll require at each stage of their buying journey. To successfully nurture prospective buyers through your sales funnel, it’s essential your content reaches leads at the right time, and in the right format.


Content is the fuel that drives every inbound marketing campaign. It’s content such as blogs that attracts visitors to a brand’s website, and it’s the promise of useful content such as eBooks, application notes, templates, tools and whitepapers that compels consumers to volunteer their contact details. By sharing informative and insightful content, brands can build trust with their target market and establish themselves as the authority in their field. And by nurturing prospects using content that engages, educates and entertains, brands can influence prospects and close customers… all without ‘overtly selling’ in the traditional sense.


Your website is both your content publishing platform and an important lead generation tool. You should use it to create a powerful online presence for your brand and build a strong relationship with your audience. Regardless of whether your visitors are browsing on their laptop, tablet or mobile, your website must be easy to navigate and easily searchable, so that prospects can find all of the engaging content you produce (as well as relevant information about your offering, when the time comes). It must also speak directly to the needs, goals, challenges and pain points felt by your customers, and deliver your value proposition in a compelling way that demands their attention.


Your website is both your content publishing platform and an important lead generation tool. You should use it to create a powerful online presence for your brand and build a strong relationship with your audience. Regardless of whether your visitors are browsing on their laptop, tablet or mobile, your website must be easy to navigate and easily searchable, so that prospects can find all of the engaging content you produce (as well as relevant information about your offering, when the time comes). It must also speak directly to the needs, goals, challenges and pain points felt by your customers, and deliver your value proposition in a compelling way that demands their attention.

Social media

While successful inbound marketing campaigns are powered by remarkable content published on your website and blog, they also rely on social media channels such as Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook to promote your content to a wider audience. Social media can be a very effective way of reaching your target audiences, and there are an ever-increasing number of platforms on which to engage with current and potential customers. But remember, it’s important to identify the most relevant social media channels and groups for your campaign, and to connect with them in the appropriate way for each channel. You should also consider the recent trend that has seen many of these platforms limiting the reach of organic posts (in which case you may need to invest some paid spend to increase your reach, for example, through sponsored posts, native advertising and other ad formats).

Lead nurturing

Inbound marketing isn’t simply about creating an audience, it’s ultimately about turning interested visitors into customers. By housing high-value content items behind lead generation forms, you’ll be able to collect useful information about your prospects with every form they fill out, which will help you to assess where they are in their buying journey. Paired with tactics such as highly-targeted emailers designed to nudge people through their individual buying journey, you’ll be able to alert your interested buyers to additional content that they won’t be able to resist.

Automation and tracking software

To make managing your inbound campaign as easy as possible, it can be a good idea to use a dedicated marketing automation platform such as HubSpot. These systems are designed to make inbound campaigns as efficient, cost-effective and measurable as possible by effectively managing the scheduling and publishing of content on your website and across your social media channels. They also track most of these elements automatically, rendering it easier to monitor and improve the performance of your programme. In many cases, they can eliminate hours of work per week by automating a lot of the time-consuming tasks associated with lead management, tracking and nurturing.

Customer relationship management (CRM)

Automation software can also handle the customer relationship management (CRM) side of your business and help to segment your database into your different buyer personas and further categorise them into leads, marketing qualified leads (MQLs), sales qualified leads (SQLs) and customers. This allows you to monitor exactly which pieces of content are bringing in your leads and identify your most successful conversion techniques. It’s also this element of the programme that can help bridge any gaps between your marketing and sales processes (and teams). For example, by using one single automation platform to manage your prospects from marketing’s first touch point to close of sale, you’ll have all the information you need to generate more customers (and improve your success rates), all in one place.


Lastly, marketing automation platforms make it easier to measure the success of your inbound campaigns across a variety of metrics, from the number of visits to your website, blog posts and landing pages, through to the referral source, the types of content downloaded and the way in which your visitors are engaging with your website. This information can be used to calculate conversion rates across your online channels, and you can break this down by the type of visitors who are engaging with your content, converting into leads and later becoming customers, allowing you to tweak your campaign in realtime and optimise your marketing and sales processes to focus on the tactical elements that generate the most revenue.

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Our proven process for delivering the perfect inbound campaign

The BioStrata Marketing Life Cycle has been specifically designed to help you set your inbound strategy and execute programmes that will deliver results.

To achieve their full potential and maximise ROI, all marketing campaigns require careful research and planning, as well as effective delivery. Inbound marketing is no exception.

Understandably, companies new to inbound marketing are often looking to access a trusted process or guide to help them produce a robust inbound plan, built to generate the best possible results.

With this in mind, we’ve developed a tried and tested system honed over many years of executing highly successful marketing programmes. It’s called the Marketing Life Cycle, and it’s based on three key steps as outlined in the graphic on this page (many of which are applicable to any marketing programme).


Step 1: Goals and strategy

The first step in the Marketing Life Cycle involves situation analysis and strategy development. This includes reviewing your current marketing activities, collecting baseline results and metrics (e.g. from the last 12 months of activity), defining or refining your buyer personas and key messages/value proposition for those audiences, and setting SMART goals for your future programme.

Step 2: Inbound marketing plan creation

After completing step one, you are in a strong position to develop an effective tactical plan. This includes conducting a marketing impact assessment and brainstorming to select the tactics that will deliver the best ‘bang for buck’ against your goals. During this step, you’ll also undertake SEO and keyword analysis, as well as an asset/content audit (both against your target personas). Finally, this will be combined to create your inbound marketing plan and calendar.

Step 3: Execution and reporting

With your plan in place, ‘all’ that remains is to execute. During this step, you’ll leverage your existing assets and create any content you need to take the programme forward, publishing and promoting it using the tactics and channels prioritised during your marketing impact assessment. We recommend working to a 90-day pulse (i.e. quarterly). This allows you to use the data from the work you have been doing to help shape your future plans. In other words, if something’s working particularly well (or not working at all), you can update your overall marketing plan based on these new insights (rather than waiting a whole year to change course!). For some elements of your programme, you’ll want to monitor the data more frequently than this (e.g. monthly or weekly) depending on the tactics that make up your programme.

Learn more about the BioStrata Marketing Life Cycle

We could fill another eBook outlining exactly how the components of the BioStrata Marketing Life Cycle work together to deliver results for life science companies.

However, if you’d like to learn more about how it could be used to achieve better marketing results for your company, book a free introductory consultation call with our team, who’ll be happy to take you through the steps in more detail.

What happens if you already have a plan in place?

The Marketing Life Cycle is not a good fit for everyone. For example, many companies have already developed an inbound strategy and are looking for expert support with executing their plan (e.g. content creation, workflow development, website updates, social media management etc.). In those cases, the Marketing Life Cycle is rarely required – instead, our team of writers, designers and inbound strategists can jump straight in and support you with tactical execution.


How to integrate inbound into your marketing mix

Inbound is an extremely powerful marketing strategy when used alone, but it’s even more effective when used in combination with other tactics.

Public relations

If you’re already creating great content as part of your inbound campaign, it makes sense to increase visibility and awareness of it even further by repurposing it for use as part of any ongoing public relations (PR) work you are doing. For example, placing articles on credible, well-trafficked blogs, life science trade media websites (and related print publications) will lend you and your content credibility, put your content in front of more people and give your website an SEO-boost by generating backlinks from high-authority websites to your own site. These platforms will often be happy to publish your contributions (or repurposed variations). And what’s more, it’s incredibly cost-effective, as you’ve already done the hard part of creating the content.

Paid advertising

Woah there! Didn’t we say advertising was dead? Well, it’s certainly not as effective as it used to be when centred around an interruptive, ‘company-first’ strategy that shouts “buy our products” to anyone who’ll listen. However, it can still play an important role in a brand’s marketing mix when used as part of a broader inbound campaign. The two important factors to consider here are that you should a) use targeted channels, to ensure your ads are reaching relevant people and b) make sure they deliver value to your prospects (rather than just trying to sell them something). In this way, paid approaches such as Pay Per Click advertising (e.g. Google Ads), sponsored social media posts and third-party email blasts targeting well-segmented, opt-in lists (such as those offered by life science specialist media organisations) can significantly amplify the impact of your campaign and help you generate more leads in less time.

Events, trade shows and conferences

The high-value content created as part of your inbound programme can also be printed for you to distribute at trade shows as sales collateral. In addition, you can place all the leads generated at shows into relevant email workflows in your email automation system. This allows you to re-engage these leads after the event at scale through using automation, by sharing relevant and engaging content that can help convert them into sales opportunities.

Direct mail

The high-value content created as part of your inbound programme can also be printed for you to distribute at trade shows as sales collateral. In addition, you can place all the leads generated at shows into relevant email workflows in your email automation system. This allows you to re-engage these leads after the event at scale through using automation, by sharing relevant and engaging content that can help convert them into sales opportunities.

How can you make the most of your next life science tradeshow?

Tradeshows provide a golden marketing opportunity, especially if you integrate your show plans with your wider communications strategy. However, these events consume a huge amount of time and budget. To secure a return on this investment, it’s crucial to work with media partners to amplify your news far beyond the event itself. To help you achieve this, we’ve put together a handy guide that you can download for free.

Download the guide

Key points to remember when integrating your inbound strategy with the rest of your marketing mix

Integrating your inbound strategy doesn’t necessarily require a complete overhaul of your marketing mix, but it may require some thought into how each element will work together.

The key factors to remember are:

  • Optimise your website: Inbound marketing relies upon driving people to your website. As such, your key unique selling points and brand messages should be clear, as should the audiences you serve. This helps to ensure prospects that visit your website via your blogs and content offers do not suffer a disconnect when they choose to explore the rest of your website to learn more about you and your offering.
  • Produce quality content and repurpose your existing assets: Successful inbound requires a consistent output of quality content, relevant to your buyer personas at every stage of their buying journey. Remember, you shouldn’t need to create content for inbound from scratch, as you will likely already have much of what you need. Instead, look at all the PR, marketing and sales materials that you have developed over time and consider how each could be repurposed for your inbound programme.
  • Apply your new content across other channels for maximum exposure: To make the best possible use of the content you produce as part of your inbound programme, consider how you can reuse it directly as part of your broader marketing and sales efforts, or repurpose it to create new content. After all, creating content is the hard part. Even for content that wasn’t as effective as you would have liked in the past, a slight change in style, messaging, format or dissemination channel can rapidly improve results.
  • Be consistent: The buyer personas you have developed for your inbound marketing will be identical to those you are looking to reach with all your other marketing activities. If you develop cohesive messaging targeted to those respective personas, then you will have the guiding principles for a powerful integrated strategy that stretches across all of your marketing and sales efforts.
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Inbound Marketing Summary

When it comes to engaging with prospective buyers in the life science sector, traditional interruptive marketing tactics are no longer delivering ROI like they used to.

Sceptical scientific audiences have long been averse to advertising and ‘pushy’ sales efforts, but thanks to the rise of the internet and availability of online information, modern buyers are considerably more in control of their personal buying journey.

That means that today’s marketers need to use the right tactics to leverage these changes in buying habits. To do this, many of the most successful life science companies are putting inbound at the heart of their marketing strategy.

By establishing your goals and strategy, developing a masterful marketing plan, executing it to perfection and carefully tuning it based on regular reporting, you too can use inbound to attract visitors to your website and convert them into customers. Using valuable content that cuts above the background noise, it’s possible to build trust with your ideal customers and position your brand as the authority in your field.

“By establishing your goals and strategy, developing a masterful marketing plan, executing it to perfection and carefully tuning it based on regular reporting, you too can use inbound to attract visitors to your website and convert them into customers.”

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How to get started with inbound marketing

We hope that this guide has given you an understanding of the fundamental principles of inbound marketing and the key steps every successful inbound programme should include.

You’ll have seen how this approach to marketing is delivering remarkable results for other life science innovators, and you may be thinking, ‘how can inbound drive better marketing and sales results for my organisation?’

Of course, it’s also possible you’re thinking, ‘we simply don’t have the bandwidth to research, plan and execute an inbound strategy.’ Perhaps you’re wondering whether your team has the internal expertise and resources to analyse your sales funnel, develop your tactical plan and create the compelling content that will drive your campaign’s success.

If that’s the case, then we’re here to help! Our experts have been supporting life science companies like yours with planning and executing highly effective inbound marketing campaigns for many years, and have the creative, strategic, writing and strategic expertise necessary to help you deliver outstanding results for you and your team.

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Start getting better results today

Book a free, one-hour consultation to learn more about how BioStrata can develop an inbound marketing strategy that will attract your prospects, convert them into leads and nurture them into customers.

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    Published July 2013. Accessed July 2019. Forrester.
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    Published May 2016. Accessed July 2019.
  • Smart Insights. How Do You Compare? 2019 Email Marketing Statistics Compilation.
    Published June 2019. Accessed July 2019.
  • Smart Insights. Average display advertising clickthrough rates.
    Published April 2019. Accessed July 2019.
  • BioInformatics. Content Marketing and the Transformation of Life Science Marketing.
    Published March 2014. Accessed July 2019.
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    Published March 2016. Accessed July 2019.
  • BioInformatics. 2018 Trends in Marketing to Life Scientists – Connecting, Influencing, and Sharing.
    Published October 2017. Accessed July 2019.