Digital Marketing within the Pharma Industry:
The first and safer way is to summarize the past 12 months, the second, more dangerous but also more exciting is to predict what will happen in 2015.
For years digital marketing was treated as a fifth wheel in pharma business. Whatever we say, the truth is that those organisations are made of sales force. And a digital sales force was just another marketing gimmick that does not add value but a workload and cost.
However, during past few years this traditional sales force thinking was challenged. Payers pressure forced companies to reduce ranks of sales representatives. Regulatory decisions have limited possibility of sales rep to meet HCPs. The result is that sales rep cannot meet his Client often enough to detail the product and maintain relationship in the same time.
Digital came to help with e-detailing and web-based self-detail solutions. CRM software supports reps with data that allow reps to have a meaningful conversation with HCPs they barely know.
Combining detailing visits with digital tatics and good old direct marketing is our new buzz word: Multi Channel Marketing or Multi Channel Sales
Top pharmaceutical companies are making far more effort to engage audiences on social media claims a report “Connecting the Dots: Which Pharma Companies are Succeeding in the Social Media Space?“ from agency Ogilvy Healthworld. Looking at the pharma companies which are most successful on social sites, the report suggests that in order to engage audiences, firms must be brave and prepared to have honest and meaningful conversations about their brands.
“We know that some pharma companies have been cautious in their approach to social media, but our report clearly demonstrates a dramatic and successful increase in activity,” explains Rebecca Canvin, social media manager at Ogilvy Healthworld, adding: “social media has changed the way pharma companies communicate – it allows them to build corporate reputation and engage in genuine, meaningful conversations with audiences. For companies who want to stand out from the crowd it’s time to be brave, get personal, educate and integrate social media into their wider marketing strategy.”
On one hand, it is surprising that healthcare firms are so keen to use social media, as regulatory boundaries and compliance constraints provide some limitations on what they can say. On the other hand, social media provides the perfect forum to explain about latest health findings, as Canvin says: “People don’t want to wade through hundreds of pages of disease information, but they may be more open to new knowledge on social media … Social media has the potential to revolutionise the way big pharma educates physicians, allowing doctors to obtain the facts they require without the many issues often associated with rep visits or advertising to clinicians.”
- The average number of tweets by pharma has gone up by 530 per cent since 2013 and Twitter followers have increased by nearly 300 per cent
- The pharma companies with the biggest communities aren’t necessarily the most effective at engaging with their users and generating interest.
- Followers reward pharma companies who post frequently and engage continuously – those that keep their networks fresh with regular updates have the highest interaction from the community.
Looking at the firms which better communicate on social, it seems that size isn’t everything. Those companies with the most followers don’t always succeed in engaging their audiences. For example, companies Boehringer and Novo Novdisk have community sizes well below the average, yet score highly when it comes to engagement.
What does drive engagement is the amount a company uses social media. Canvin explains: “It isn’t hard to understand why the most active companies are the ones enjoying the most engagement – after all, social media in its very nature demands participation and interaction. And, of course, any conversation is a two-way street. The increase in involvement that we saw in 2014 is not just because pharma companies are becoming more active, but because their audiences are also showing a little more willingness to jump in. Overall, it seems that followers will reward the companies who post frequently and engage continuously – those organisations with high activity scores received more likes and comments on Facebook and more replies from Twitter followers.”
The data for the report was gathered by monitoring 10 of the most popular networks for 14 pharma companies across six categories: social presence, social network, community size, activity, engagement and activity. The profile of each company was reviewed for one week per month for three months during 2014 to ensure sufficient data was collected.
Individual pharma companies, digital/multichannel, brand, marketing and medical teams can safely assume that most HCPs are now digital natives and by 2020, two thirds will be so* This topic formed the focus of several presentations delivered this month in Rome at EXL's @DigitalPharma Europe conference, as demonstrated in the slide below from Antonio Blanco, Area Sales Lead, Astrazeneca. *Source: LBI Health: www.lbi.com/uk
"When patients are aware of therapeutic services, nearly six out of 10 of those surveyed use them (58 percent), and nearly eight in 10 (79 percent) perceive the services as extremely or very valuable, a new survey by Accenture reveals. Yet, less than one in five patients (19 percent) are aware these programs even exist."
Previously, we looked at the case for ‘agile approvals’ and considered how regulatory constraints provide us with a catalyst for innovation. In this article, we consider how to plan ahead and start preparing for engagement.
Novartis is collaborating with Rani Therapeutics, a US start-up in an endeavour to produce a so-called ‘robotic pill’ enabling a convenient administration of complex biotech drugs that are otherwise, normally given by injection.
Rani’s capsule looks very much like a conventional pill, and is swallowed in the same way. However, the underlying mechanism of action differs in that the pill contains tiny needles made of sugar that are pushed into the wall of the intestine to deliver the drug.
patient engagement the blockbuster drug of the century
The insight of the year goes to Leonard Kish, a health IT strategy consultant, for making that statement regarding patient engagement. The corollary to this statement is a game changer: What happens when effective patient engagement becomes the Standard of Care? Used to determine whether a doctor is liable [...]