Clinical trials still struggle to hit enrollment numbers. Mobile ads could be the answer.
As early as 2010, Google was predicting the rise of a mobile-first culture — and it seems that the moment has arrived. Not only has mobile officially surpassed desktop for total site visits, but almost two-thirds of website visits initiate on mobile. And while desktop still leads for total time on site, mobile is quickly catching up, with 9 percent growth over the course of 2017.
Today, consumers constantly interact with digital content via what Google calls “mobile micro-moments,” or key points in time when a user turns to their mobile device. These moments are prompted by the user’s desire to do something, buy something, find information, or go somewhere. Each micro-moment offers medical marketers an opportunity to end up on a patient’s screen — and with 75% of clinical trials failing to meet recruitment deadlines, it’s vital to take advantage.
Mobile ads aren’t just necessary in this day and age — they’re also highly advantageous, offering cost efficiency, flexibility, and targeting capabilities beyond that of desktop. Here’s what sponsors and CROs looking to make the leap to mobile need to know.
Building a Mobile-First User Experience Pays Dividends
When Google predicted the rise of mobile, it put its money where its mouth is. Since 2014, the search giant has been quietly tuning its algorithm and website to favor mobile traffic, and mobile-friendliness is a factor that’s heavily considered in its present rankings algorithm. More than half of Google searches now initiate on mobile, and its search rankings reflect that reality.
For this reason, clinical trials that are hoping to recruit potential patients should design their digital advertising efforts with mobile in mind. It’s not enough for a landing page to load and appear on mobile; it should offer a completely seamless experience to users on desktop and mobile alike.
While pagespeed certainly plays a role in creating a great mobile user experience — bounce rates are still much higher on mobile than on desktop — it’s important to think about the UX holistically. Even with a quick, beautifully-designed page, mobile users aren’t likely to stick around if they’re required to fill out lengthy forms from their phones.
Fortunately, because Google is already optimizing search for mobile, your efforts won’t go unrewarded. Creating a mobile-first UX packs a one-two punch, appealing to a mobile audience and offering higher search rankings for users across all devices.
Geolocation Facilitates More Meaningful Targeting
Today’s smartphones are almost universally equipped with GPS, meaning that location plays a far greater role in mobile search and advertising than it does on desktop. Clinical trials are often bound by location; though new strides in telemedicine point to a future in which studies operate remotely, for now, it’s important for trials to target patients within a feasible distance.
Fortunately, mobile ads offer a variety of geographic targeting options. For example, marketers can specify that display ads and paid search results only appear for patients within a certain radius. This allows clinical trial information to reach the right patients, in the right place, and at the right time – a feature that’s especially important when it comes to populating under-filled investigator sites.
For clinical trials that haven’t invested in mobile advertising programs, the time is now. It’s never been more important to create a mobile-first campaign for recruiting patients.