Executive Director, Customer Development Marketing
Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

How does your organization use ethnic insights to drive growth?

We conduct extensive studies of different customer segments to try to understand not only how they may differ from each other, but, more importantly, what are the key attributes that define that customer? What is important to them and their families? What are their impressions of healthcare (their own, their family and the system)? With these insights we are able to design the most appropriate messages, the most relevant creative concepts, and the most impactful materials and programs.

Do you engage ethnic business partners in your multicultural marketing process? If so, how?

Once we have identified that a certain condition may be more prevalent within a particular culture, we look to partner with companies that have expertise with these segments, whether that be, for example, hispanic advertising agencies that specialize in marketing to hispanics or hispanic media agencies that can help us identify the best media channels to reach a particular population.

“Understanding the condition and the patients affected is the critical starting point as we develop multicultural campaigns.”

List the various ways your organization begins to understand the culture of the groups it wants to reach.

We involve both internal and external sources. externally, we conduct quantitative research with customers from the target group in order to better understand their opinions regarding healthcare, their cultural preferences and norms and their perspectives related to the condition being treated. We take these factors into account when we create marketing materials and then we test these materials specifically with these groups. in many cases, these materials are notably different than our general market materials, because they are culturally specific for the population being targeted. internally, Boehringer ingelheim has a very diverse culture so we also test concepts and materials with employee groups representing the culture we are trying to reach in order to get an internal perspective.

How does your organization show how your products or services will benefit and/or meet the needs of different groups targeted?

It’s important to understand how different diseases or conditions differ from culture to culture. for example, is the incidence of hypertension higher amongst African Americans or is the incidence of diabetes higher with hispanics? understanding the condition and the patients affected is the critical starting point as we develop multicultural campaigns. the cultural norms around family also influence our approach. for example, we know that a strong extended family is important in the hispanic culture so we may provide additional educational materials for family members in a hispanic campaign. Once a campaign is up and running we do specific tracking research against the relevant customer group (e.g., Hispanic) to see how the campaign and materials resonate and then make adjustments as needed.

Headquarters: Ridgefield, Connecticut
Web site: us.boehringer-ingelheim.com
Primary Business: Pharmaceutical Manufacturer