Monday, December 30, 2013

ePharma Summit Welcomes the New Year! How can you save 25% off the your pass? Details here!

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To celebrate the finale of a great 2013, we're throwing an ePharma Summit New Years Sale!

For the next two days, we're offering you - the ePharma Summit Online Community - a chance to attend the ePharma Summit in New York City for 25% off the standard rate of all passes!

How can you take advantage of this offer? Register online and mention code XP1906NYE. This limited-time offer expires Tuesday, December 31, 2013 at 11:59PM ET.

ePharma Summit will take place February 10-12, 2014 in New York City. Download the agenda if you'd like to know more about the program.

Rules and Regulations Apply:
• Only new registrants will receive 25% off the standard registration rate
• This offer only applies to passes purchased online on Monday, December 30 and Tuesday, December 31.  This is a non-transferrable offer and cannot be retroactively applied nor combined with other offers, discounts or promotions. 

Thursday, December 26, 2013

13 Reasons for ePharma Holiday Cheer

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With the holidays just around the corner, we wanted to thank all of you that help make ePharma the leading marketing event in the industry. It’s you and your colleagues’ participation that makes ePharma the place to reconnect with peers and make new connections. Whether you’re new to ePharma or you’ve consistently attended the event over the past 13 years, we’re sure you’ll walk away with new ideas, contacts and skills that you won’t gain anywhere else.

To close out 2013—and in honor of the 13th year of the ePharma Summit, we wanted to highlight  13 benefits of attending ePharma in 2014:
  • 13 years of ePharma, bringing you content that makes you think, case studies that help you act and networking opportunities that connects you with experts and gurus 72-hour investment in ePharma will impact your 365-day plan and possibly your career—an ROI we can all get behind
  • 12 sessions in the eMarketing University, earning you a Certificate of Completion to hang on your wall
  • 11+ hours of dedicated networking time for mingling, brainstorming, and meeting
  • 10 years of the annual thought leader panel moderated by ePharma Chairman Paul Ivans
  • 9 trends and buzz words fully tackled and dissected into usable and helpful strategies and tactics to move your marketing forward—HCPs. Patients. Payers. EHRs. Clinics. RNs. Sunshine Act. Sales Force. Healthcare Reform.
  • 8 brand-new sponsors and tech providers ensuring a greater marketplace presence for you to explore and onboard into your 2014 marketing campaigns
  • 72-hour investment in ePharma will impact your 365-day plan and possibly your career—an ROI we can all get behind
  • 6 am wake-up call for our new Morning Charity Bootcamp, because it’s fun and 100% of the net proceeds go to Jeremy’s Heroes, in honor of 9/11 hero Jeremy Glick.
  • 550+ attendees, all in one place, over the course of three days.
  • 4 quick-fire Game Changer sessions focused on big data, change management, healthcare reform, and emerging tech.
  • 3 all-new Thought Leader Panels on innovation, the evolving customer model, and pharma’s new value proposition.
  • 2 years with the Refills, a live band including Co-Chair Pete Dannenfelser, taking place during the opening night networking reception.
  • 1 and ONLY digital marketing event the pharmaceutical industry pauses to attend
AND it’s New York City!

Want to know more about ePharma Summit 2014? Download the agenda.

We’re looking forward to seeing you at ePharma Summit next year on February 10-12th in New York City.  Plus, register by January 10th and SAVE up to $700! And as a reader of this blog, when you register to join us and mention code XP1906BLOG, you can save up to $100 additional.  Now that’s something worth a holiday cheer!

See you in 2014. Happy holidays!

Friday, December 20, 2013

QuickWin Tip from ePharma Keynote Lisa Bodell: Prioritize after a brainstorm

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Today, we feature another QuickWin video from ePharma Summit 2014 Keynote Speaker Lisa Bodell. She points out that we often leave brainstorm sessions with no incentive to activate any of the plans we developed during the session. So she shares some quick pointers on how to change this - identify the implementation ease and impact value of the ideas presented. Discuss why and what is actionable and then prioritize.

Watch the video here:

Lisa will be joining us this February at the ePharma Summit to present the keynote Kill the Company: End the Status Quo and Start an Innovation Revolution to share other tips and trips to becoming an innovative company and how you can become the innovation driver in your corporation. For more information on Lisa's presentation and the rest of the program, download the agenda.  If you'd like to join us, as a reader of this blog, when you register to join us and mention code XP1906BLOG, you're eligible to save up to $100 off the current rate!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Pharma’s opportunity to improve the patient experience through decision support

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Today's post come from Rory Stanton, Consumer Analyst at Manhattan Research. Manhattan Research will be a part of two sessions at this year's ePharma Summit taking place February 10-12, 2014.  As reader of this blog, when you register to join us and mention code XP1906BLOG, you'll save up to $100 off the current rate!

Pharma’s opportunity to improve the patient experience through decision support

One of the topics we’re digging into here at Manhattan Research is decision support. Though the internet is a go-to option for most US consumers for health information, there are many hurdles to accessing the right information to help consumers make decisions about their health. In fact, only 55% of online consumers reported that they can find all the health and medical information that they need on the Internet. The flood of health apps, websites, portals, health communities, and health news sites has created a bit of “information overload”, and patients need decision support tools to help determine what all this information means in the context of improving and managing their own health.

Some of the key things we’re seeing in this space:
  • Decision Aids: Because healthcare models are changing and patients have less time in front of a physician, they have less time to discuss options, risks, and whether or not to elect certain treatments. Pharma can help consumers speed up the decision making process in a number of ways. A recent JAMA study demonstrated the influence of decision aids on improving participants’ informed decision making and decisional satisfaction.
         For example, take Janssen’s Hep C tool. Janssen breaks down dense content into discreet,         
         digestible components for consumers with which to take action. They’ve also used multiple 
         mediums for content to keep it engaging and enjoyable. There’s a video component for patients 
         to relate to another patient’s story, condition education component (with options to deliberate, 
         factors that affect your choice, explanation of side effects), and an opportunity to participate in 
         the Hep C community with interactive “promise” tiles that are embedded in the background of 
        the home page.

  • The use of interactive video in consumer advertising: Pharma can experiment with interactive communication to allow consumers to experience brand content in a very personalized way. Interactive video companies like Interlude and Jelly Vision allow consumers to partake in the ad or content they’re experiencing by allowing viewers to select one of two options at various points in the video ad. In this way, the brand serves up content that is relevant to only the user’s unique needs.
  • Web-design that takes the guesswork out website navigation: Consumer traffic to pharmaceutical corporate websites is low because usability is typically low. Product websites are fraught with too many navigational choices on the home page for consumers to be able to digest the information when they need it. Offering too many decisions on what to view next on one page paralyzes patients and stands in the way of their main objective: to get the information they need to make informed decisions. The experience of guiding patients through critical decision points for those who arrive on pharmaceutical corporate websites or product pages will be paramount.

Clarifying the many decisional conflicts experienced by consumers is important for the success of the next crop of drugs from Big Pharma.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Physician to Pharma: Engage the Patient!

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Heart Doc Envisions More Meaningful Role for ePharma in Patient Care

By Marc Dresner, IIR

It's not a sentiment one might expect, given DTC's sometimes tense relationship with physicians. 

But Dr. Jordan Safirstein actually wants pharmaceutical companies to interact with his patients directly and in potentially more influential ways.

From a healthcare provider's perspective, advertising to patients would seem intrusive enough; anything more would presumably constitute an intolerable land grab.

Jordan Safirstein
But the cardiologist says he wouldn't be opposed to seeing pharmaceutical and device manufacturers overtly insinuate themselves in the healthcare process. In fact, he's encourage the industry to do just that.

"I feel like there is a lot more [pharma] could do in terms of helping patients with compliance, educating patients about their disease state and not just the medication that they are taking," Safirstein told Inside ePharma.

The opportunity as Safirstein sees it would be most pronounced in the digital space—apps, digital interventions, streaming educational content for patients, etc.

And it seems a natural next step when one considers the potential of interactive media in the context of broader healthcare trends.

“[Pharma] can fill in the gaps that currently exist in medicine.” 
- Dr. Jordan Safirstein

"Now that pharma has been restricted from providing anything without an educational component to it, maybe they should redirect their strategy toward becoming a useful resource beyond just manufacturing medication," Safirstein said.

"Pharmaceutical companies have many more resources than physicians do," he added. 

"There is no doubt that additional assistance, especially to support physicians in their goal to make patients better, can only be a good thing."

In this episode of the Inside ePharma podcast interview series, Safirstein discusses: 

• Why the time is right for pharma and device manufacturers to engage patients on an entirely new level;

• What that engagement should look like; 

• And why physicians and other healthcare providers will appreciate the shift!

Editor’s note: Dr. Jordan Safirstein will be featured on a panel at the 13th Annual ePharma Summit taking place February 10-12, 2014 in New York City.
For more information or to register, please visit

Marc Dresner is IIR USA's senior editor and special communication projects lead. He is the former executive editor of Pharma Market Research Report, a confidential newsletter for marketing researchers in the pharmaceutical industry. He may be reached at Follow him @mdrezz.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Should Genetic Testing Services be Regulated?

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Today, we feature a post from ePharma Summit Media Partner PharmaVoice.

If you have a gene that predisposes you for a specific disease, would you like to know? If yes, do you want those types of services regulated by the FDA, or left to innovative companies to develop unhampered? It’s a very personal question, and currently under much scrutiny.

The FDA recently clamped down on 23andMe, a genetic testing service, because of a lack of access to the company’s data. The FDA’s concern is that the testing may not be accurate, and/or may influence people to undertake unnecessary medical procedures knowing they may be at risk for specific medical conditions. If a consumer finds out she has a gene that predisposes her for breast cancer, she may demand a surgical procedure as a preventive measure. Other patients may demand specific medications as a prophylactic against potential health risks.

It’s no surprise that doctors, in general, do not favor the consumer-based mail order genetic testing approach to health care. Physicians are used to patients coming into a consultation with reams of information from the patient’s web research. A visit to WebMD may cause a patient to believe they have the symptoms of a serious disease, however anecdotal the diagnosis may be. Genetic testing services adds a whole new mountain of personal information that patients can lose sleep over. Test results from services such as 23andMe provide specific information about the patient’s genetic predispositions. The data becomes personal. However, being predisposed for something does not mean that condition will arise in one’s lifetime.

Is it good for patients to know their genetic makeup and their possible health risks, or does it cause more problems than it solves? Does it create an open dialog between patients and HCPs, or does it clog up the system with unnecessary office visits and phone calls? Should the FDA regulate genetic testing services such as 23andMe, or call it an educational tool consumers can use or ignore at their discretion?

Genetic testing services could be a boon to Pharma, because the more health information available to patients, the more likely they are to schedule visits with their doctor and address their health concerns.

What’s your opinion? Tweet your thoughts using hashtag #DNAdiscussion.


Monday, December 16, 2013

EHRS + Clinical Prediction Rules = Better Outcomes + Reduced Costs?

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Today's guest post comes from ePharma's event chair Paul Ivans, President, Evolution Road Consulting. This year marks his 10th year as ePharma event chair.  ePharma Summit takes place this February 10-12, 2014 in New York City.  Want to join Paul?  As a reader of this blog when you register to join us and mention code XP1906BLOG, you're eligible to save up to $100 off the current event rates!*

EHRS + Clinical Prediction Rules = Better Outcomes + Reduced Costs?

As we discussed at the ePharma Summit earlier this year, the US Healthcare System is facing dramatic, tectonic-plate level changes driving us toward the horizon of a very new and different “Healthcare Future”. And the hope for all of us, is that it will be a much better future than the broken, misaligned, costly and marginally effective system we face today.

Source: Image 1                                                                                                                                              Source: Image 2

Of course, the road so far has not been particularly smooth (and you thought you had a tight deadline building that website for your brand, huh). But if we pull back and look at the foundational changes happening in the system, there are tremendous signals of hope that the new healthcare future will drive significantly better patient health outcomes at dramatically lower costs.

A key driver of this optimistic outlook is the intersection of two rapidly growing trends: the rapid adoption of EHRs and the maturing of clinical algorithms that leverage actual patient data from EHRs to provide probabilistic guidance to healthcare providers in real time.

We have all seen the data on the dramatic adoption of EHRs in the US, primarily driven by the current incentives and upcoming penalties related to meaningful use. All good. Yet under the surface is a massive opportunity for EHR data to be leveraged in the clinical setting to improve patient outcomes, yes improve outcomes. The data on you and me in EHRs will include (over time) all our symptoms, lab results, diagnoses, treatments, and how we’ve responded to treatment pathways. The real power of the EHRs will be in leveraging that data in real-time as input to clinical prediction algorithms that will help the provider diagnose you more accurately the first time, with fewer trial and error cycles, fewer lab tests, and fewer office visits…all based on the detailed data and nuances found in your clinical data.

Over the last few months, the results of a series of randomized clinical studies have been published, indicating that while this type of approach is still “early”, it has demonstrated improved outcomes and reduced costs across conditions such as streptococcal pharyngitis and pneumonia (by Mount Sinai's Division of General Internal Medicine as published in JAMA Internal Medicine, September 2013).

Source: Image 3
Additionally, other clinical researchers are adding another fascinating layer to the mix – genomics. For example, the Inova Translational Medicine Institute is partnering with data analytics company GNS Healthcare to build predictive models based on EHR and genomic data to predict infants at risk of preterm live birth. According to Inova and GNS, “these models will characterize the complex relationships among many variables in order to identify the associations and underlying causal mechanisms of preterm birth and will allow for personalized prediction of preterm birth risk and gestational length. This, in turn, will help prioritize the testing of potential new diagnostic and treatment plans for at-risk patients" (source: Fierce EMR, August 2013)

So while we are still in the very early stages of our healthcare system’s transformation to the new healthcare future, there are many strong and positive indicators of hope that, as an industry, we can dramatically improve patient outcomes and reduce costs, at the same time.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Where is your digital doctor online?

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Are physicians becoming more comfortable online?  A recent survey by ZocDoc of 360 physicians shows that 83% of those surveyed have a webpage for their practice - and they also see the importance of connecting with their patients online.  Of physicians 26-55 years old, 87% said they had an online social media preference while 65% of physicians 56-75 had an online presence.

See the full inforgraphic at Med City News.


This February at ePharma, we'll be going more in-depth on these trends in the presentation Emerging Marketing Trends & How to Harness Technology for Physician Engagement.  We'll reveal some of the top platforms and trends attracting the digital physician.  Want to know more about this session and the rest of the program? Download the digital agenda.  If you'd like to join us February 10-12, 2014 in New York, as a reader of this blog when you register to join us and mention code XP1906BLOG, you'll save up to $100 off the current rate!

Monday, December 9, 2013

Collaboration leads to awareness

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In a recent article from News Medical, they look at a recent effort made by the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City to increase awareness and participation on their social channels surrounding the rare disease Lupus.  They tested whether or not working with the S.L.E. Lupus Foundation would work to increase the number of participants joining their Facebook chats to increase awareness of the disease.  HSS already knew that the Lupus audience online had a desire for information and were digitally inclined to participate in a chat like this.  By having a Facebook Chat, the HSS was able to provide a team of experts at one given time to answer any questions those participating in the chat had to an audience that was already online and asking questions.  They were to educate their audience on any question asked during the period and promote proper physicians visits during this time.

When HSS teamed up with the Lupus Foundation, they saw 332 new likes to their page the day of the chat and 6624 people saw the post.  This is a significant increase from the 34 average likes from the previous two posts.  Overall participation soared by 200% - proving the effort to be a true success.

This February at the ePharma Summit, William J. Tunno, Director, Global Patient Advocacy & Professional Relations, Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc will be on hand to present Create Open Dialogue with Patient Advocates and Bloggers.  In addition to online chats, find out where your patients are online and how to really connect and engage with them.  For more information on this session and the rest of event, download the agenda.  If you'd like to join us, as a reader of this blog when you register to join us in New York City February 10-12, 2014 and mention code XP1906BLOG, you'll receive the maximum savings - up to $100 off the standard rate!

How important is it to work with well connected patient advocacy groups in today's digital age of marketing?

Friday, December 6, 2013

ePharma Keynotes Address Change Management and Inspire

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In years past, being a digital marketer was like being part of the cool kids club, where you had meetings with fresh-faced companies, start-ups, and boutique agencies, possibly even wearing jeans to the office every day. Oh my how times have changed and digital marketing has grown up—BIG TIME!

Digital marketing has evolved into a more sophisticated job and a necessary part of the marketing mix. Most importantly, in case your function wasn’t taken quite as seriously back in the day, it certainly is now—and you’re expected to drive ROI and deliver profitability! You’re now looking for ways to integrate your digital marketing efforts into mainstream marketing programs inside your organization.

At the ePharma Summit™ taking place on February 10-12 in New York City, the challenges and opportunities around change management will be addressed directly by our headlining keynote presenters. They’ll give you insights and strategies that will help you move your digital agenda and marketing organization forward and also inspire you along the way.
  • - Thrive in the new world of healthcare with Jonathan Bush, Chief Executive Officer, athenahealth
  • - Starting an innovation revolution with Lisa Bodell, Author, Kill the Company & Chief Executive Officer, futurethink
  • - Innovate at the speed of change with Jeff Conklin, Senior Vice President, Global Commercial Operations, Bristol-Myers Squibb
  • - Get a glimpse into the future of pharma marketing with Tom McCourt, Chief Commercial Officer, Ironwood Pharmaceuticals

ePharma Summit 2014 will take place February 10-12, 2014 in New York City. We’re proud to have Paul Ivans, President, Evolution Road Consulting, back for a 10th year as an event chair. When you register early to join Paul and other digital pharma marketers, you can save up to $700! As a reader of this blog, you’re eligible for maximum savings when you register to join us and mention priority code XP1906BLOG.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Pharmacists in Focus for Rx Marketing – 3 Key Multichannel Opportunities for Pharma Brands

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Today's post come from Maureen Malloy, Director, Product Commercialization at Manhattan Research.  Manhattan Research will be a part of two sessions at this year's ePharma Summit taking place February 10-12, 2014.  As reader of this blog, when you register to join us and mention code XP1906BLOG, you'll save up to $100 off the current rate!

The U.S. healthcare landscape is drastically changing under new reform and pharmacists are stepping in to play a key role in care and supporting patients throughout their treatment plans. Moreover, pharmacists show significant demand for digital patient support services from pharma. These trends represent strategic opportunity for pharma commercial teams looking to support pharmacists who are playing growing role post healthcare reform.

Our latest Taking the Pulse® Pharmacists 2013 study highlights three key multichannel opportunities for brands to consider when evaluating ways to connect with pharmacist audiences:

Pharma-Sponsored Adherence Support: Pharmacists are on the front lines with patients when it comes to helping them take and stay on their medication - a critical role as the government and payers put more pressure on improving treatment outcomes. For example, more than 9 in 10 online retail pharmacists provide patients with adherence support. At the same time, pharmacists want pharma support in this regard. The Taking the Pulse® Pharmacist 2013 study found that more than 4 in 5 pharmacists surveyed have used or are interested in using pharma-sponsored adherence materials and support programs via their EHR.

Educational Materials on Pharma Websites: Pharmacists are also looking to pharma companies for educational materials for teaching and sharing with their patients. For example, 3 in 5 retail pharmacists are interested in accessing patient education materials on pharma product, corporate or service websites.

Online Promotion for Pharmacists: Various pharma companies are already beginning to expand their rep focus to pharma – particularly specialty pharmacists focused on the increasingly critical niche therapy market. Nearly half of specialty pharmacists have already used an on-demand presentation from a pharma company, such as recorded webcasts, videos, slideshows or animations, and a significant share of those who haven’t are interested in doing so.

Manhattan Research’s Taking the Pulse® Pharmacists study and advisory service is focused on helping pharma brands understand the evolving role pharmacists are playing in patient care and how brands can connect with pharmacists through multichannel marketing and sales strategies. The study was fielded in August 2013 among 754 retail, hospital and specialty pharmacists.

For more information about accessing the study and Manhattan Research analysts, please visit the product page or contact

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

From the Impossible to Possible: How can your company overcome challenges?

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Today, we share a brain-storm session idea from ePharma Summit Keynote Speaker Lisa Bodell, Author of Kill the Company and CEO of futurethink.  What do you see as impossible for your company?  What do your employees think of as impossible?  In this video, Lisa looks at how a brainstorming session can bring out the "possible" in the "impossible.

To find out more about Lisa's presentation at the 2014 ePharma Summit, download the agenda. The ePharma Summit will take place February 10-12, 2014. If you'd like to join us, as a reader of the ePharma Summit blog, you can save up to $100 off the current rate* when you register to join us and mention code XP1906BLOG.

Monday, December 2, 2013


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ePharma 2014 is coming February 10-12, 2014, and it's the premier event for digital marketing in the pharmaceutical industry. Join 550+ of your life science peers in pharmaceutical, medical device, and biotech companies as well as agencies for a truly immersive education and networking experience that is rivaled by none in the business!

Save $100 off all current registration rates for 24 Hours – December 2 from 12:00AM-11:59PM ET.  Click here to register on the web and mention code XP1906CYBER.

Download the ePharma brochure here for full agenda details.  Don't miss this opportunity to SAVE an EXTRA $100 on your registration!

Have any questions?  Feel free to email Jennifer Pereira.