Measuring Advocacy of Digital KOLs

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Identifying the most important & active digital experts in your space is just the first step of the engagement planning cycle.

Because even within a therapy area, digital KOLs (DOLs) have very different online characteristics – those who tend to initiate online conversations, those that tend to create new content, those that tend to propagate existing data, etc., and by engaging with those experts in a way that is aligned with their unique characteristics and personal positioning, you can positively engage with that individual in a truly collaborative manner.

And after several years of opinion leader mapping in virtually every therapy area and geography, our experience has taught us that only once you understand the impact of your work with experts, can you begin to enhance the success of your DOL engagements.

So how do you start to measure the impact of your DOL engagements on the HCP community in a practical, tangible way? And we don’t mean re-tweets and other propagation measures – we mean actually measuring the change in thinking and beliefs.

The answer: by benchmarking and continuously tracking metrics that can be defined together as ‘expert advocacy’.

Everyone has their own opinions of how advocacy is formed, but we use three distinct indicators (through our ‘Advocacy Engine’) to tell you how you are ‘shifting the needle’ amongst your DOLs:

  1. “Sentiment” is an assessment of a Digital KOL’s position as judged by those who engage with the KOL on a regular basis. Typically, an advocacy ladder or an advocacy matrix is used to track the sentiment of a KOL
  2. “Mindset” involves asking Digital KOLs directly about their beliefs and where they stand in relation to key therapeutic issues, or even in the context of your scientific story
  3. “Messaging” involves the medical analysis of a Digital KOL’s scientific outputs or online behaviour to identify the scientific messages and data they are advocating, seen through an objective analytical perspective

Combining these three metrics, we can help you to visualise an aggregated, advocacy score of the individual DOLs and the DOL landscape, with regards to their perceptions of your company, products and scientific messaging. Only then can you then collaborate and engage with them in the right way on your key scientific issues, with confidence.

Simply drop us a line if you would like help in identifying the right digital KOLs to support your digital engagement initiatives, or maybe you would like to quickly validate your existing Digital KOL list to make sure they are still the right people you should be working with.

Theo Wiley

Senior Services & Innovations Manager

+44 (0)20 3397 5304