Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Digital Pharma Proving Effective for Direct to Consumer

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A new study from comScore shows that online direct to consumer marketing is effectively increasing conversions for both patients and prospects.  The report, which is based on survey data from 163 pharmaceutical studies, found consumer visits to branded pharma sites to be the most impact among web traffic.  Said John Mangano, VP of comScore Health Solutions, “The importance of pharmaceutical branded websites continues to be high. Our research shows that regardless of how condition sufferers get to the site, that visit has a significant influence in those patients seeking treatment.”

The comScore data showed visitation to these pharma sites to provide a significant bump in both visibility and brand favorability as well as influencing purchasing.  For prospects, site visits drove a 9.4% increase in new patient starts and for patients, there was a 14.7% increase in prescription refill.  Additionally, visits from natural search traffic were the most impactful among prospects with a 13.9 point lift in new starts.  Paid traffic came in at 9.3% for the same group. 

The consumer showed a much different attitude towards phama sites than physcians did in a recent study.  The report found that 33% of doctors never visit pharma sites and another 43% utilize them less than once a month.  In addition, physicians were more actively seeking out third party information with 85% preferring independent sources. 

Other significant findings from the comScore report include:

•  As you might expect, mobile consumption of this information was up.  Almost half of those seeking health information used mobile devices this past year compared to 35% in the year prior.  According to comScore, “As the American population continues to age, as tablets become more prevalent in the home, and as people become increasingly comfortable with using digital platforms for seeking information, we can expect these underlying trends for the category to grow.”

•  Pharma has the highest viewability* rate of any industry when it comes to online advertising.  Among the industries surveyed, pharma had the highest rate at 51%.
*Defined in the study as at least half of the ad appearing in the viewable browser for at least one second.

Pharma's outperforming other industries in online ad display 

•  Visits to health sites overall increased 36% year-over-year. 

•  The report also found a 14.2 point spike in brand favorability among patients that had visited pharma sites. 

You can request a copy of the comScore report here.

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This post was contributed by @MikeMadarasz

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