Small to medium-sized medical device companies are being called on to develop relationships online with clients, suppliers, and stakeholders, or risk stagnating.
Medical device marketing company CommuniD has been tracking the activities of medical device companies and their online activities, particularly social media.
The findings are clear – Major MedTech companies have been ramping up their digital-marketing capabilities to serve HCPs and healthcare systems more effectively. More specifically they have evolved their technical, product-based traditional marketing approach to run campaigns via email, social media, and other channels while increasing expertise in engine optimisation (SEO) and search engine marketing (SEM).
And it’s not just a recent phenomenon, according to a McKinsey report in 2017, large players have been breaking out of traditional medical marketing frameworks for several years.
The Medical Device Industry is characterised by high investment costs, competition, heavy regulation, and constant technological advancements. A tough environment for smaller companies with great ideas but finite resources.
However, there is a group of players who understand the challenges to marketing their products in a market where major device companies already have established sales and distribution networks and long-lasting relationships with physicians’ hospitals and greater resources to develop new medical devices or improve existing ones. And despite the trend to seek acquisition as soon as possible, they believe so much in their technology that they have chosen to remain independent, develop their unique life-changing devices at their own pace and retain ownership.
Digital Marketing and social media are powerful tools for these small to mid-size company to compete against giants because, in digital marketing, although resources play an important role, competence, creativity, resilience and perseverance can often offset the power of multibillion expense budget.
One such company is Aleva Neurotherapeutics. The Switzerland-based company has created a medical device to personalize patient therapy with Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) competing against 3 giants like Medtronic, Abbott, and Boston Scientific. Their innovative product delivers the highest precision in directional stimulation for patients suffering from neurological disorders.
Another small medical device company making waves in the industry for its innovation is Greenbone. The company has developed an innovative generation of bone substitutes that mirrors the structure of natural bone and is obtained from rattan wood by a unique process that preserves wood’s 3D structure. In a market dominated by Depuy-Synthes, Baxter and Allosources, Greenbone’s substitutes are designed for extensive bone damage in non-loaded and load-bearing skeletal segments such as long bone non-union fractures, spinal damage, trauma, and cancer-induced bone loss.
Last is the Australian company Osseointegration International. Osseointegration is a medical procedure that allows for the direct attachment of an external prosthesis to the skeleton through the surgical implantation of an intramedullary device. Osseointegration as a concept was introduced by Per-Ingvar Branemark, in 1969 and improved by the Australia-based surgeon Professor Munjed Al Muderis. Osseointegration International is paving its way in competing with large orthopedic corporations (Zimmer holding, Stryker Corporation).
Elvio Gramignano, founder of CommuniD says: “The Medical Device Industry is not a level playing feed, and smaller companies with innovative solutions must find ways of thriving in an industry that is already very competitive. Those who engage prospects and customers online will be able to go some way to level the pitch – those who rely only on old relationship models will soon stagnate.”