The pharmaceutical industry's understanding and adoption of multichannel strategy is, at best, variable. While more enlightened organisations are trying hard to challenge the old models of sales and marketing, others are stubbornly sitting on their hands and persisting with tried-and-tested traditional methodology.
In truth, it's simply paper under glass. To progress, companies perhaps need to become more proactive and pull multichannel planning into the strategic process much earlier. But to do this, they may need to develop a greater understanding of the opportunity and challenge some of the historical cultural values that are deeply embedded across the industry.
“Thankfully, we appear to be coming to the end of the industry-wide obsession with digital and reaching a more level playing field, where companies realise there's a balance to be struck. But to move forward, we really need to follow consumer marketing's lead and develop an empirical way of measuring the value of activity. That will significantly inform our ability to plan a multichannel approach.”
At present, the industry's use of multichannel marketing is often tactical - and rather than being stitched into the fabric of a properly planned pre-launch strategy, it's bolted on at the end as a product of the 'must do something digital' philosophy.