“I didn’t expect them to say yes,” Elsevier’s executive director of global clinical reference, Karen Philip, told MM&M about the experiential marketing campaign she proposed to promote its ClinicalKey medical reference tool.

The marketing campaign consists of two mobile units that bring an immersive experience to institutions and individuals. The units are accompanied by two brand ambassadors who work with the site’s reps to make sure the presentation anticipates and answers employee questions.

This exhibition space is a first for the Dutch publisher and is promoted on site with materials that include posters as well as e-mails sent out before the event by human resources departments. The e-mails and posters can be co-branded with the host institution, or run as Elsevier-only pieces.

The institutional version of ClinicalKey launched in April, and the individual version followed in September. Philip said presentation is based on the existing relationship between the hosting institution and the publisher. “If they know Elsevier already, the focus will be different than one without access historically to resources like this,” Philip said, adding, “so you’re really trying to introduce both Elsevier and the product itself.”

Philip said the road show has been a critical tool to help physicians and institutions understand ClinicalKey’s scope. It includes more than 500 Elsevier medical and surgical journals, over 800 medical and surgical reference books and more than 9,000  videos. This content has been tagged “down to the paragraph sentence level,” using medical taxonomies that include the ICD-9.

She also said the process of bringing the tour on site and assessing a site’s needs, as well as the experience itself, cultivates a relationship between institutions and individuals and Elsevier before pricing discussions begin, lessening the tension that accompanies pricing discussions.