21 Jul 2020

The dog days of summer typically coincide with a downturn in brand advertising and awareness campaigns. But strategically speaking, is it a smart move for healthcare marketers to pump the brakes during summer months?

Our open rates demonstrate that HCPs are just as engaged in the summer as during other times of the year, including peak times such as annual meeting months — perhaps more so because they might have a little extra down time and fewer brands are trying to reach them.

The chart below demonstrates the stability of our gross open rates by month for all association news briefings across our network since 2016.

Some marketers may tend to write off summer months due to the misconception that every doctor takes vacation around the same time as corporate workers. Even if that were true, vacation plans have certainly been disrupted this year. This brings us to summer Fridays, which are another traditionally avoided timeframe.

In addition to the stability of our month-to-month engagement rates, our data science team made an interesting discovery: although many of our advertising clients like to book on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, our open rates don’t support the notion that engagement is stronger on these days. In fact, the data suggest that engagement is just as strong on Fridays as any other day.

This summer in particular seems more critical for brands than a typical year – many brands paused to regroup and consider how to proceed during the COVID-19 pandemic, leaving a gap in presence and awareness. But, there is still HCP demand for education and resources, especially during a global pandemic.

The upcoming months will prove crucial for many brands to find their footing in a new normal, particularly given that doctors are starting to see patients in person again, elective surgeries have resumed in nearly all states, and patients are thinking about booking their next appointment.

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If you have questions about existing or future advertising programs, or suggestions for this series, please contact your BulletinHealthcare representative or email advertise@bulletinhealthcare.com.