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Increasing participation in clinical trials among underrepresented populations

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Reaching under-represented populations has been a challenge to clinical trial patient recruitment for years. Sponsors, CROs, recruitment vendors and sites have all struggled to find the right approach for reaching these diverse groups. While these target audiences are not necessarily small, they each have unique characteristics that can make it more difficult to engage them in the clinical trial process.

With digital recruitment, some of these challenges can be overcome, and at a smaller cost than one might expect. With all the data available through digital marketing, it is now possible to target specific groups and interests via several digital platforms.

The most significant element in establishing your approach to reach your population is to understand your audience. Though this seems like an obvious point, often a plan to know your audience gets glazed over.

When setting up a program to reach hard-to-reach populations, there are some key factors to consider:

Messaging: Is your messaging appropriate for that audience? Should you create multiple messages for each audience you are trying to reach?

Leveraging Data: How can you leverage current online data through sources such as AdWords or Facebook that will allow you to target the right population?

Testing: Do you have time to test your approach, both the message and the platform?

It is important to recognize the differences in your potential audiences to ensure your campaign is successful. It can take a little longer to set a campaign up if you are going to test and do some research, but in the end, it will be well worth the effort if the campaign yields the successful results.


Guest Contributor Emily Cortez is VP, Program Director at TBWA\Worldhealth. She has over 17 years’ experience in the healthcare industry. Her career started at a clinical trial site, which sparked her interest in the healthcare industry. Over the years she has managed patient recruitment campaigns over various therapeutic areas.

This article was reprinted from Volume 24, Issue 11, of The CenterWatch Monthly, an industry leading publication providing hard-hitting, authoritative business and financial coverage of the clinical research space. The Action Items section features short columns  focusing on actionable or how-to advice from clinical trial professionals. To submit an Action Item, please contact editorial@centerwatch.com. Subscribe >>

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