As a life science marketer or biotech innovator, have you been tasked with creating a brief for a new website or a website refresh project?
You think you know what you want for your website, but do you really know what you 'need'?
How many website projects have you worked on with a web agency?
How many websites or digital strategy projects have you delivered for the life science sector?
We have over two decades of experience creating and developing outstanding website projects, delivered on time and on budget. We have rescued many website projects that have started with a poor website brief. Most website projects go wrong due to a miss-match between a business's goals and the brief written. We come across the same issues over and over again, when an RFP or website brief doesn't cover the correct specifications needed to deliver a successful website development project.
Nuances that you can miss add up to a disaster project.
Writing a clear brief that a web professional can deliver on quickly and cost-effectively will improve the outcome of your life science or biotech website project. Writing an effective website brief can be challenging.
We specialise in the Life Science and Biotech sectors, however, we know that every website project is unique with unique deliverables for your company. Delivering a website project is the process of delivering solutions. As expert website designers, we provide specific solutions to Life Sciences and Healthcare.
There are many elements to a successful website project brief, here are five critical things to include.
Your website project is more than a technical specification
We see this many times, we receive a website project brief or RFP that is just a set of technical requirements for website development. While this is important this is just one part of a website project. Most of the technical side of a website is something we produce all of the time, it is standard to every website project. The difference for your project is the strategy, business goals, audiences and how the site is fundamentally going to drive sales. Don't get a technical specification produced for the first round of proposals, get that at the next stage when you have chosen your agency partners.
#1 - Your Business Goals
Your life science website needs to exist for a reason. It has to be more than a digital brochure. Your Healthcare or Life Science website needs to deliver to your specific business goals. A few examples of specific business goals can be:
- Product launches
- Investor outreach
- Authority positioning
- Increasing a sales percentage
- Creating an invaluable resource
- Reaching new markets
- Selling to new countries
- Brand building
- Building a community
Within your website brief, you need to indicate your priority goals with specific success deliverables. This provides guidance to your website agency so they can formulate the best solution to your brief.
#2 - Your Audience(s)
Most Healthcare and Life Science companies will have a range of audiences they need to communicate with and reach out to. These can range from clinicians, researchers, corporate labs, through to GP's and patients. You need to define your audiences on your website project brief. This is critical for your web agency to provide a website project solution that can clearly communicate to all of these audiences.
We have direct experience of tailoring Website User Flows so that visitors find the content they need. Delivering a truly user-centric experience.
The latest Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) techniques are driven by audiences and their search needs. We include SEO right from the start of every Life Science and Biotech website project we deliver. Visibility is critical to driving website traffic and if you are not being found by your target audience(s) then you are missing a critical opportunity.
"Belinda [Arttia Creative] has a great approach to projects bringing structure, creativity and a high level of customer service. We were so impressed with the first piece of work that we immediately asked if she could take on a second project. This is now complete - on brand, on budget and on time. I can fully recommend Belinda and Arttia Creative."
#3 - Website Content
Without outstanding content, your website is nothing but a framework. You need to define on your website project brief if you have 'web ready' content available or if you need content creating for your website project.
Your content should encourage an emotional connection with your visitors. How should they feel when they interact with your brand online?
Our expert copywriter and content coaches can work with you to create content with an emotional appeal, whether direct to patients who may need to feel reassured or clinicians who may need to feel inspired or excited about a new concept.
Creating content for the web is a specialist skill, creating content for life sciences is a specialist skill – these combined require a range of expert skills, from SEO copywriting, to highly branded photography, graphics and infographics. Together with value downloads, case studies, product samples and customer reviews. If you have this ready then great, if not, you need to define on your brief exactly what areas you need assistance with.
Content on life science marketing websites is not a set-and-forget situation. You also need an ongoing content strategy. We provide Content Planning, Content Coaching and Content Creation as part of our ongoing agency services and 'client success programmes'.
As life science marketing teams we know how busy your day-to-day work is, so we provide you with a done-for-you ContentCreation and Content Marketing Campaigns so you can concentrate on your immediate needs.
#4 - Brand Guidelines
Brand consistency is critical across all of your life science and healthcare marketing activities. Your website project brief needs to indicate if you have a thorough brand guide for the web design agency to follow.
We have worked on many website re-design projects where inconsistencies across their current website are causing confusion and a poor User Experience. Having a detailed Brand Guideline Document to follow helps in delivering a truly brand building experience. Your brand guidelines need to have digital and web standards indicated, not just print brand specifications.
"Belinda [Arttia Creative] is a rare talent. Someone who can understand, appreciate and ‘gets’ the specialist nature of my business and the markets we serve. A pleasure to work with."
#5 - Technical Features
Defining technical features or functions on a website project can be challenging. Terminology can mean different things to different people or different situations. Make sure you have a thorough understanding of the technical requirements you are asking for.
We don't need the basic technical specification of a website, it's about any custom functionality your website might need. Getting any bespoke functionality wrong, or miss-communicating your needs can lead to project delays and budget increases.
If you are unsure about how to describe your Life Science website technical requirements then discuss this with your web agency. We have come across many website project briefs that don't clearly define what they need from a feature aspect because the marketing teams don't quite know how to define them. Make sure you have a clear understanding of the technical needs of your project.
#Bonus - Seeing the bigger picture
Looking at the bigger picture and not the details. Very often we work with healthcare marketing teams who are too hands-on with the day to day marketing activities of their company. As Life Science marketers you should be focusing on the bigger picture, not the day-to-day marketing deliverables. Yes, you need to know what is happening with your marketing schedule but you need to be looking at the long view. With a Life Science website project brief, you need to include your long-term goals so your website can take your Life Science business to that destination.
#Bonus - Data, tracking and measuring
Will you need to provide Board-Level reports on how your life science or healthcare website is performing?
Make sure your website project brief doesn't just include what is needed for launch. What happens next when sales teams, investors and directors need to know performance figures?
We provide tailored Analytics Dashboards for all of our website projects as part of our ongoing agency services and 'client success programmes'. Your website brief needs to include your requirements for continued improvements, data tracking and an understanding of how your audiences are journeying around your content.
We can probably predict the next five problems you will have with your website project because we've been there, worked through them and solved these problems. We know what works and more importantly what doesn't work and what you need to avoid.
When you purchase a primary business product or service, you typically speak to experts or specialists in that field before you make those big decisions. The same applies to your website.
We've spent nearly two decades working in the design and web development profession, putting design and website projects into practice. Over the past 10 years, we are increasingly working within the Healthcare, Life Science, Biotech and Medical Devices sectors. This is because our specialist team understands your needs and your audiences.
Belinda White | Creative Director
(Feature image credit: Daniel Kopai Unsplash)
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