Pharma Jumps On Social Media Bandwagon

Pills-A4More than 50% of leading pharma companies expect social networking, online video and other types of digital marketing to grow in use as critical tools for communicating disease state and product information, according to a recent study.

 The research, from Best Practices, LLC, studied pharma strategies for effective messaging around new products and the medical conditions they treat.



 A core group of new technologies is expected to grow rapidly for communication and education purposes. More than half of all research participants stated that they expect social networking, podcasts and online video to grow in use as critical tools for communicating disease state and product information.

 Companies profiled were Abbott, Novartis, Actelion, Novo Nordisk, Boehringer Ingelheim, Pfizer, Eli Lilly, ProPharma, Genentech, Roche, GlaxoSmithKline, Sanofi-Aventis, Janssen, Takeda, Vertex, Merck, Sharp & Dohme, Watson, Nektar, Wyeth, Schering-Plough and Xanodyne Pharmaceuticals.

 New pharmaceutical products -- particularly those that are first-in-class -- require not only external disease state communication but also internal communication to win support in the marketplace, according to Chapel Hill, N.C.-based Best Practices.

 The report, "Raising Disease State Awareness: Best Practices in Internal Brand Messaging for New Products," examines how companies communicate at the brand and disease state levels in order to educate employees internally and create a consistent, credible external message surrounding new products.

 The study spells out 10 key best practices culled from in-depth interviews with benchmark participants, who were involved in pre-launch, internal communication for Viagra, Gardasil, Prozac and many other successful brands.

 Comprising in-depth surveys and interviews with 32 top biopharma companies, the report enables marketing and brand team leaders to implement the type of well-timed and well-targeted internal communications strategies essential for cementing both the medical and commercial framework for a new product's market entry and supporting its overall success as a brand.

 The 67-page report analyzes effective communication channels and use of new communication technologies , timing of communication activities by product development phase and advantages and disadvantages of employee message segmentation.

 The study also looks at tracking internal message effectiveness, preventing sensitive-information leaks, using key opinion leaders to influence employees and needs-creation marketing tactics. A summary of the report is available online.


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