Administering Covid-19 vaccines comes with a valuable perk for retail pharmacies: access to troves of consumer data.
Chains such as CVS Health Corp., Walmart Inc. and Walgreens-Boots Alliance, Inc. are collecting data from millions of customers as they sign up for shots, enrolling them in patient systems and having recipients register customer profiles.
The retailers say they are using the information to promote their stores and services, tailor marketing and keep in touch with consumers. The companies also say the information is critical in streamlining vaccinations and improving record-keeping, while ensuring only qualified people are receiving shots.
“Every one of these customers is coming through our digital front end, so we have their email, we have their text message, and we have the ability to communicate with them regularly,” said Jonathan Roberts, CVS chief operating officer.
CVS executives say they plan to stay in touch with vaccine recipients beyond receiving their second shot and use information gleaned in the process to better market to them. The company said about eight million people who received coronavirus tests from the chain hadn’t filled a prescription at a CVS in the previous year, signaling that Covid-19 services promise to bring in new customers. A CVS spokesman declined to comment on the chain’s use for marketing purposes of medical information gleaned through the vaccine process.