Best practices in approved email

Back to Insights

Valued by HCPs

Approved email empowers reps and MSLs with pre-approved content to meet different HCP needs — leveraging their customer understanding to deliver more personalised communications. When implemented correctly, it produces excellent results. Open rates are far higher with approved email than general marketing emails. And relationships are strengthened by customer teams demonstrating that they understand the individual HCP’s needs.  

But it still has to be done right. To help you get the most from approved email, we’ve put together a list of tips for your strategy and content.

Source: Veeva white paper - Guide to Digital HCP Engagement

Talk to the individual: Use recipients’ names in the subject line and emailmessages. This gets attention. Because people often skim read email subjectlines, seeing their names is a good way to catch their eye. It also makes itmore relevant. If you just write “Dear doctor”, the readers will rightly thinkthat it’s intended for everyone and not specifically for them.

Be personal: Use the sender’s name too. Getting an email from an actual person has a greater impact than one from a department or company. For best effect, use a person’s name in the “from” line, as well as in the signature of the email message.

Make it about them: Directly address the reader. Try to use words like “you” and “your” rather than “we” or “our.” An approved email should read like it was written to one person rather than a mailing list. That makes your message more relevant to the individual.

Get to the point: Tell the reader what to expect Be specific about the content of the email in the subject line. The more specific you are, the more high-quality leads will open your email – people who are really interested in the topic or product.

Be brief: Deliver your key messages as briefly as possible, showing that you respect their time. Remember that you can always link to more detailed information – and once those links are clicked, you will better understand which customers are interested in which topics.

Use images sparingly: Create the right image-text balance. An email with lots of images takes time to load. Also be aware that spam filters can catch emails too many images. A ratio of 60% text to 40% images should be fine, though 80% to 20% is safer.

Make it work with words: Don’t rely solely on images to tell the story. Be aware that some email recipients turn their images off by default. If you have important numbers or statistics included in the images, duplicate it in the text format as well.

Relate emails to landing pages: The landing page design and content should be aligned with the email to avoid confusing people. Also, ensure that the messages and topics highlighted in the email are properly covered on the landing page – it has to offer much more than the email.

Create mobile templates: The best option is to create email templates in systems that have mobile optimisation by default and look good on both phones and tablets. And remember to test for different devices, screen sizes and operating systems.

Make it mobile-friendly: Format your content for small screens. Forms should be large and easily clickable without the need to pinch and zoom. Ensure that buttons are big enough too. The minimum standard is 44x44 pixels with 10 pixels of surrounding space. Be generous.

Use A/B testing: Email is a great medium for A/B testing because it’s cost effective to do multiple versions. Often, you’ll be surprised over which works best. And try to test not only the email but also landing pages if you can.

Design for busy people: If HCPs completely skip the email body copy, they should be able to understand the main points of the email by simply reading the subject line, headline, and call-to-action buttons. All three should match and create a story with a clear message and further steps.

Take HCPs on a journey: Approved email is a great way to activate other channels. It’s perfect for drawing people to portal content, for instance, and can also be the ‘glue’ between content on different channels. While being simple, email can be used to orchestrate a lively and engaging journey for HCPs through your product story.

The graph of what HCPs think of approved emails
Source: Decision Resource Group – Taking the Pulse® Europe 2018

What works for you?

Are you thinking of implementing approved email and need an experienced agency partner? Or are you looking to take the channel to the next level?  In addition to optimizing your content to improve open rates and engagement, we can also make the content much easier to create and speed MLR approvals with modular content. Activate approved email in the way that works best for your organisation.

Contact Anthill Agency to learn more

Relevant Anthill services

Approved email: use ‘rep-triggered’ approved email to personalise your HCP engagements in an easy way. Learn more
use approved email to connect channels into ‘customer journeys’ for great HCP experiences. Learn more

Approved email resources

Approved email guide: go deeper into the strategies, content, technologies that the best performing companies are now using. Read now
Case study:
learn how Anthill enabled a leading European pharma company to apply modular content to their approved emails. Read now

Sign up to newsletter. Get more content like this.


Digital Strategy

3 digital megatrends (and how to apply them to the life sciences)

At Anthill, we keep a keen eye on digital marketing and sales innovation. Over just the last couple of years, things have continued to change at dizzying speed. There are new centres of innovation established around the world.

Omnichannel Strategy

How to empower affiliates to deliver on global pharma brand strategies

Many life sciences companies are experiencing the same problem: global brand strategies are often excellent but aren’t having the expected impact. So, what’s happening?

Customer Experience

Best practices in pharma remote HCP engagement

Remote detailing is now an essential pharma marketing channel. Best practices have been established that deliver quality remote experiences every time. Learn what it takes to meet (and exceed) HCP expectations.