Choosing the right patient recruitment provider
I. Know your target population
In clinical trial recruitment you are (most of the times) not dealing with masses of people. Traditional mass media communication strategies will thus, not be very effective or very expensive, because you are looking for a handful of suitable candidates in each city. As Marketing experts, we find other ways to reach out to potential candidates by researching who we are dealing with.
- What sources does my target population use to research information about their disease?
- Do they have any commonalities in terms of hobbies, dislikes or other characteristics?
- Should always be asked in advance. The more I know about the patients, the less scattering losses I have, because I can do a much more precise Marketing campaign.
II. Don’t advertise – Inform the patient!
Nobody wants to be sold on the next best thing, especially when it comes to health issues. Patients (and every other human being) want to decide themselves what is good for them and what they want to buy/do/like. Therefore, it is important to not just advertise a study, but rather to inform the patient. You can do this by creating enticing content that gets the patient curious about clinical trials in general and that gives him the opportunity to learn more. By using this approach, you also make sure that every patient can find his or her own timing for deciding to participate in a study.
III. Develop regional partnerships
We all want committed patients for our trials. Usually the most committed patients are the ones that have been actively involved in finding a new therapy or health improvement even before considering the study. Sometimes this means patients get involved in regional advocacy groups or local chapters of other health organizations. Creating partnerships with these groups can help spread the word about the possibility of trial participation among the patients. But again, it’s not about selling, it’s about informing patients about an option they have.
IV. Optimize your (online) Marketing budget
Unless you have millions to spend on Marketing, you will want to use your money wisely. Do not decide on just one recruitment channel or campaign, instead split the budget in smaller pieces and test different channels, ads and images. Once you have found out what works, stop the rest and shift the budget to those activities that bring the highest value.
V. Admit that you don’t know everything
Oftentimes we hear that sites are doing the patient recruitment locally themselves. As practical as this may seem, the majority of sites do not have the necessary marketing knowledge to recruit patients efficiently – (Or do you think that the study nurse knows as much about online marketing as the ad guy who has done this for 10 years?). So if you aren’t sure about how to find the right patients get help!
If you are interested in finding out how Mondosano can help you find patients, get in touch with us.