Monday, April 29, 2013

Mobile Marketing: Are you investing?

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In the first quarter of 2013, mobile marketing spending grew 111% in 2012, and the number is only expected to rise as we continue to down the path of a digitally connected world enabled by iPhones.  According to AdWorld, this past quarter alone, spending increased in advertising 11% over quarter 4 of 2012.  According to an article at Mashable, there are at least 22% of all adults online accessing the internet through mobile devices and there will be 2 billion users by the year 2015.  Those adults are connecting to the internet for email, social networking and search.

So how are consumers using their phones right now for health-related purposes? eMarketer reports that 45% of US Adults searched online for health related items in 2012.  When asked what Pharma was going to do when it came to their digital budget, there were of those who were polled in the article, 46% didn't know what they were going to do with their digital budget this year.  The article suggests that consumers are looking for information on line and one of the  best ways to connect with these customers would be discounts.  Not-for-profit companies are also a great way for Pharma to connect with their audience.

So where is your budget when it comes to mobile media?  How can you connect to  your audience through these platforms in the way that connects with their audience?

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Digital tools can improve health. Who is the best advocate for their use?

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The doctor, according to a recent article at Forbes.  Author John Nosta points out that few words are more powerful than "The doctor recommended it."  So how can we get the public to begin using the great new digital tools such as RunKeeper, Lift,  Cardiio and more to start monitoring health?  Nosta acknowledges that it's very difficult to get face time with a doctor, as Pharma knows well, but here are a few ideas to to successfully promoting digital health:
  • Awareness - Let doctors know about these tools and the benefits they can provide for the patients.
  • Trial - Get doctors to use these tools in their everyday lives to see the benefit of the health apps
  • Validation - Get the numbers behind the app and share.  Why is the app successful and how it it improving the lives of those who use it?
  • Support - set up the dialoguethat will connect the patients and doctor through the app.  There is no better way to promote support than have access to constant dialogue
  • Advocacy - Constant support of the rest of the steps in the cycle.  Share, promote and continue to advocate the importance 

So ultimately, by encouraging the doctors be more involved in digital health, we can encourage patients to begin monitoring their health in the same manor. But it's key to keep up the physician education by sharing the new advances of how they can keep their patients more healthy.

Do you agree with this? What can we take from this digital health example and how can we connect it to the audiences we need to connect with as Pharma marketers?

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Introducing FEI Wellness: New Ways to Approach Healthcare

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The healthcare marketplace is ripe for revolution. It will be sparked by those who embrace change and work together to collaboratively create innovative solutions for moving forward.

We are excited to announce the launch of the Front End of Innovation (FEI) Wellness conference. Co-located with the 11th annual FEI: The World Leader in Advancing Innovation the world renowned FEI conference, FEI Wellness presents you with NEW WAYS TO APPROACH HEALTH. May 6-8, 2013 • Seaport Hotel & World Trade Center • Boston, MA

Ensure the Outcomes you Need ...with 30+ Industry Specific Perspectives:

AMIA • Johnson & Johnson • Pfizer • MIT • NEWDIGS • Children’s Hospital Boston • UnitedHealth Group • Siemens Healthcare • Continua Health Alliance • Healthrageous • Center for Connected Health • GE Healthcare • Beacon Health Systems • Eastern Maine Medical Center • Xerox PARC • University of Southern California • Aetna • Eli Lilly and Company • Novartis

Download the FEI Wellness brochure here.

FEI was far and away the best conference I have been to in a decade, and of its type, the best I’ve ever attended. The keynotes were universally excellent…the atmosphere of discussion and collaboration was easily the best I have ever seen...I learned something useful in each session.” - FEI Past Attendee Terry Barhart, Senior Director Global R&D, Pfizer

When the right people meet the right environment, innovation thrives. FEI: Wellness is where exceptional cross-industry keynotes, combined with powerful healthcare-focused content, and distinctive experiences, drive purposeful change.

Join us as we transform an industry. 

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

What are the biggest misconceptions in pharmaceutical marketing circles in regards to digital channels and media?

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In continuing our look back at the 2013 Inside ePharma interview series, today we look back at the conversation Marc Dresner had with James Chase, Editor-in-Chief of Medical Marketing and Media.  In this interview, they discuss how digital is changing the Pharma communication channels.  From how sales reps can communicate with doctors, the new empowered patient, how digital strategies should be changing with organizations and more.

What do you see as the biggest misconception in pharmaceutical circles or in pharmaceutical marketing circles, if you will, with regard to digital channels and media?

James: That’s a good one, Marc. Well, in the spirit of controversy, I guess in terms of the big picture actually defining digital as a series of channels would, to me, be a misconception in itself. When you think of digital, what the digital era has done is transform the way that people search for information, how we absorb messages, how we engage in dialogue, how we interact, what we share, who we trust, what we find valuable and how we experience our brands and, also, how we judge them, of course. It’s done other things like shorten our attention spans, it’s raised our expectations of interactions and it’s held brands accountable for these experiences. 
So, really, digital has made a mockery of the traditional media monologue. You can no longer project messages and ideas and instructions onto your target audience and expect them to think and do as you say. Digital has changed how people behave, which goes beyond a series of channels. And while pharma may be a unique, highly regulated industry, the pharma audience is made up entirely of human beings. You know, HCPs, patients, payers, shareholders, regulators. They are all people. Therefore, they all have some idea of what should be possible with digital. Physicians, for example, demand engaging interactive experiences with reps. They don’t want you to just flash them a PDF of a sales aid. The chances are they owned an iPad before you did. They already know that you can do some amazing things with it, so you better go do something amazing with it. As for consumers, you can no longer sell to consumers in this era. You need to help with them the information they’re looking for, help them manage their diseases, exchange dialogues, exchange value and make it a good experience. You can’t control the dialogue, but you can listen and take part and correct misinformation. So, it’s not really about channels. 
While we’re on this subject, this notion of the empowered patient. It’s not like the patient suddenly said one day: “Finally, digital is here. Now I can be an empowered patient. I can get one over my doctor. I’m going to stick it to the pharma industry with my new found knowledge.” No, the empowered patient is itself a manifestation of the changing communication behavior of people, which is enabled by technology. If I can log on and get information on my disease from 100 different sources, why wouldn’t I do that? If I can chat online with patients like me, why wouldn’t I do that?  
And by the way, I’d also like to have some of that interaction with the guys who developed my life enhancing drug or whatever that may be. 
So, my point is, digital is much more than a series of channels. It’s a lifestyle. We are all living it and it represents an era of radically-changed consumption behavior and I think if you’re not fully on board with this notion, then I think you are putting yourself at a disadvantage.

Read the full interview here.  Find all of the Inside Outsourcing podcasts here.  To stay up to date on the latest episodes of Inside ePharma, and to know about the upcoming ePharma Summit events, sign up for updates.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Exploring & Envisioning the Future of Healthcare Tech & Innovation

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This post is brought to you by the FEI Wellness Event taking place May 6-8, 2013 in Boston, MA. This post is also republished from the original at the

Which technologies will be most likely to affect the scenario of health in the coming decades?

The inforgraphic below examines six broad areas, the forecast covers a multitude of research and developments that are likely to disrupt the future of healthcare industry and its innovation.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Facebook works on comment moderation - will Pharma be encouraged to join?

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Much of the reason Pharma companies have shied away from fully using Facebook is the ability of two-way conversation that may or may not be deemed appropriate by the FDA.  This week, Facebook has announced a few new initiates that allow Facebook page owners to change what comments are seen and displayed on their Facebook profiles.

Companies can now order/hide/display the comments they so chose according to CNet:
The first view is "top level comments," which can be ranked to show those that a brand wants everyone to see. Then there are "replies," which show the brand's replies to comments. And, the final view is "comment stream," which displays all comments together in chronological order.
While this system is only available on the Desktop feature, do you think Facebook is moving in a direction that will encourage more Pharma companies to join the conversation on Facebook?

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

What do savvy patients mean to pharmaceutical marketers?

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For the 2013 ePharma Summit Event, we sat down with the thought leaders in the field to discuss some of the topics and pressures facing the industry.  Over the next few weeks, we'll be looking back at many of these podcasts.  Today, we begin highlighting the interview with Craig DeLarge, the US Leader of Multi-Channel Marketing Center of Excellence, Merck.

Patients—people—have become much, much savvier both technologically and in terms of digital citizenship. What does this mean to us as pharmaceutical marketers?
Craig's response: That’s a good question. It seems to me that there are at least three things that we have to continue to work on as pharma marketers. The first is making sure that we keep up from the standpoint of making our information available in those channels that our customers are migrating to. As they change, we need to continue to work at changing with them.  The other is working to reform  our content and our various offerings so that they maintain their relevance in the face of the changes that customers are going through in terms of their health journey. The third thing is re-thinking how we as companies organize ourselves, execute, plan, produce and deliver this relevant content in relevant context and channels in order to continually add value to our customers, again, as they change. These are our customers whether we are talking about patients or caregivers or healthcare professionals, whether they are mid-level or prescribers or payers for that matter.
Read the full interview here.

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Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Highlights from ePharma Summit 2013

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Were you at ePharma Summit 2013?  Take a look back at some of the highlights and see why attendees enjoy coming back year over year.

If you'd like to know more about the upcoming events in the ePharma Summit series including ePharma Summit West taking place this September or ePharma Summit 2014 taking place next February in New York City, sign up to receive updates.