Keep Your Brand Healthy And Thriving: Complimentary eBook

With 2011 galloping along and 2012 planning just around the corner, we’re excited to share our Brand Champion Health Check  — a complimentary eBook designed to help marketers and business leads assess their company and brand’s health, and to consider what actions will power successful growth.

While the eBook centers on the Pharma and healthcare industry, it is also highly relevant to any consumer brand.

Champions know that staying in top health is critical and that early detection is key to avoiding costly down time and poor performance – can even mean the difference for survival. However, unlike the many patient health screens available or the ease by which consumers can go for their annual physical, marketers do not have ready access to a thoughtful, comprehensive health check-up.

The Brand Champion Health Check screens three parameters

 

 

 

 

 

Continue reading

2010 Outlook: 10 Ways to Win With Patients and Improve DTC Efforts

[Full article: 2010 Outlook: Doom and Gloom For DTC? 10 Points for Winning with Patients, published in DTC Perspectives, December 2009]

Despite many gloomy predictions for DTC advertising and the pharma industry overall, there’s never been a better time for marketers to forward their brands and consumers’ lives with new thinking about what constitutes patient marketing in the 21st Century (DTC 21).  Ten prescriptions can help improve focus and strengthen DTC efforts in 2010.  Important media and technology trends are also “musts” to actively consider for those who want to bump impact and value.

  1. Adopt an updated definition for DTC that considers the full picture of how consumers will interpret and interact with a brand TODAY. This calls for attention beyond “big bang” marketing spends, and begs for identifying meaningful levers to drive education and growth. DTC is no longer just an awareness or acquisition vehicle to move “eyeballs” through a linear marketing funnel; it’s every influence and touch needed to bring new information and education, help convert, instill loyalty and inspire advocacy.  Continue reading

Pharma Marketers: No Product Is An Island

Recently, I spent a productive day working with a smart group of consumer agency partners to integrate and finalize 2010 Marketing Plans for a Pharma brand we all support.

Our conversation centered around the brand promise and the patient experience throughout the decision and treatment journey: from awareness and consideration, through conversion, adherence and advocacy or brand champion. We discussed the impact of different triggers and barriers, or where we might lose consumers (leaky buckets), which targets should be high priorities and why, and how the patient journey is no longer linear. (You may also want to read The New Marketing Funnel by Adam Cohen at A Thousand Cuts.)

All the stuff you might expect a consumer team to collaborate and consider…Sounds good… EXCEPT… the work represented only the consumer team– or one of the brand’s customers.  Continue reading

Pharma: Dip Your Toes and Other Tips From DTC Perspectives Conference

We’re in the midst of conference-frenzy.  Last week I was able to attend day two of DTC Perspective’s Fall Conference: Reform & Refocus  (For twitter followers: #dtcfall). Here are some of the key themes that I picked up:

  • Dip-your-toes approach. This was said over and over about social media. Get started, and evolve as you learn and your company becomes more comfortable with the effort. (This is also a common theme in Digital Pharma’s conference taking place this week. #digpharm)
  • Remember your overall marketing strategy–Before you clarify objectives  for social media and start running with tactics…
  • Give the team TIME. Initiating new social media programs took many more hours and resources than originally planned. And there is always the unexpected…
  • The Internet is for marketing-not just advertising. This also requires a shift in mindset. (Bill Drummy of Heartbeat Digital)
  • Technology is moving oh soooo fast-Mobile, video, ‘smart’ advertising using behavioral data, gaming and of course social media are musts to be more than experimenting with in 2010.

Continue reading

Pharma: Should DTC TV Have A Place In Your 2010 Budget?

Everyday it seems that someone is reminding us of the demise of traditional DTC TV and broad based media in favor of the web and social media.

While web 2.0 continues to power health care today–critical to consumer health care information learning and sharing (How Social Are HC Consumers with their Info)–there are many who believe that traditional TV (when creatively executed) can still play a vital role, as part of the media mix, to help ‘surround the consumer’ and drive awareness, education and action, including engagement online and off. ( Trend Report 2009, MedAd News DTC Alive and Well,  May 2009, Magna Forecast, 2009

  • Interestingly, the recent debut and success of Hulu.com’s traditional TV advertising on this year’s Super Bowl has many online leaders, including Amazon, Zappos and Kayak, reconsidering traditional agencies and offline tactics to help create ‘fast’ awareness and define more broadly what they do (Adweek: Online Brands Turn to Traditional Ads)…”What we’ve found is that if we layer in a little bit of off line brand advertising, it improves  the ROI of our online direct response campaigns,” Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh said. (Many Pharma brands have also found this to be true; TV helps drive web efficiencies in addition to generating quick awareness and MD requests…)  Continue reading

Pharma Marketers: Think You Can’t Do Moderated Chat?

Is your brand actively engaging its customers, enabling them to share their stories and opinions, and hear from “other consumers like them”? (In the latest PEW Internet and California Healthcare Foundation study, 68% of all adults ask a friend or family member for healthcare information-second only to asking a healthcare professional at 86%, and 57% of all adults use the internet.) Or are regulatory and AE concerns keeping you from considering moderated chat, even though it could strengthen two-way conversations  and help move your brand closer to building a genuine community?

Asacol, P&G’s prescription treatment for Ulcerative Colitis has recently launched a new Community for UC patients to share stories-and share advice.  Asacol created a moderated chat where consumers can share their stories -if they keep it focused on their experience managing UC – diet, travel, telling others, etc. – and do not mention “Asacol” or other drug treatment options by name. (See their Guidelines for submitting stories.)

In the Asacol Community, consumers are encouraged to provide stories or to ask questions.  Content is carefully moderated per the guidelines, but consumers can rate and vote on story content and answers.  Continue reading

Traditional DTC Media Is Alive and Well–But Not In A Vacuum!

“Even as digital marketing channels and platforms become increasingly important and pervasive in Direct-to-Consumer (DTC) advertising, traditional ‘mass’ media channels can still be effective and efficient (especially for larger brands)… The key to success is a well-integrated marketing strategy that takes advantage of old and new media alike,” writes  Steven Niles in the May issue of MedAd News.

While the industry largely continues to label DTC merely as ‘broad-based advertising’,  there are many who subscribe to DTC in the 21st Century (DTC 21) as a key strategy to educate and engage consumers through push and pull touches, including old and new -media and relationship building – tactics alike.  Continue reading

The New Marketing: Leading A Tribe to Create a Movement?

Every once in a while, it’s good to take a step back…

The Ted Tribe Talk: “Tribes are what matter now” just went live.  In 17 minutes, Seth Godin bring to life his story: the Internet has ended mass marketing and revived a human social unit from the distant past: tribes. Founded on shared ideas and values, tribes give ordinary people the power to lead and make big change… Everyone and anyone should step up–find something worth changing and start a movement by asking the tribe to spread the idea…

Seth speaks to the evolution in marketing from factory, to mass market and “push” advertising,  to the growth of the internet and the idea of tribes as a way to lead and connect people and ideas. He believes that tribes are what people want now–tribes can create movements that can help change the world– not because of force, power or money– but because people want to connect especially to something worth changing. Seth makes the point that its not about the numbers, but creating a movement among the people that care–the true believers–and as little as a thousand believers is enough.

Continue reading