Here is my recent presentation, Digital Strategy in the NOW Economy: Proactive and Real-time as presented at The Social Media in Pharma Online Summit Conference. While this digital strategy presentation is geared to Pharma and Healthcare, it is quite relevant for all marketers with an eye to reconsidering their digital approach in the NOW Economy which demands both new skills and changes in our marketing mindset.
Slide Content Overview:
- The NOW Economy Demands...
- Kick-Ass Digital Brand Strategy- It's not about technology. It is about creating opportunities for the brand/company to build deeper relationships. Digital strategy must integrate into the brand strategy and strengthen the brand's core promise.
- Creating and Leveraging a Digital Brand Strategy requires new skills and a discipled, fluid process. Follow these six steps to greater success.
- Five Imperatives to Boost Your Digital IQ- Concentrate your learning on these five critical success factors for today's marketplace, starting with 1) designing content strategy, 2) delivering 'perfect fit', 3) thinking digital ecosystem, 4) fostering community and 5) getting over 'lack of control'. Are there are others that you might suggest?
- Go. Initiate. Enchant.- Health is Social- Try something new!
The challenges of INTEGRATION and how to best keep the brand's core promise front and center appear to be top-of-mind to Pharma right now.
During my webinar, while there were many great questions posted, the majority seemed to center around the challenges of INTEGRATION and how to best keep the brand or company's core promise front and center--and to ensure that technology changes are incorporated without becoming distractions. While this has always been a marketer's dilemma, the need for greater focus and integration is now at it's highest point ever as suggested by the many questions:
- Integration within brand teams and across internal support teams i.e. digital, data base, PR, social media, customer service
- Integration across outside agency partners spanning offline and online, web, mobile and social media platforms
- Integration of digital web and social media with brand objectives, strategies and brand positioning/branding elements
- Overseeing a strong brand core throughout the online and offline marketing process, including prioritization of consumer (and physician) digital communications and tactics that work hardest to build customer relationships within the context of the core brand promise.
Here are a few initial thoughts to consider. Each company and brand must establish an internal brand champion that 'owns':
- protecting and ensuring that the core brand promise is upheld
- is responsible for making the tough calls across specialists after team input
- helps prioritize the most important strategies and tactics to achieve brand objectives and to strengthen the brand promise.
While this sounds a lot like the old consumer brand manager job I used to have way back, the old 'hub and spoke' brand manager role popular in the 80's and 90's has been largely abandoned as many companies moved to a more politically acceptable 'shared ownership' mindset. I believe that this is now leaving a marketing and leadership void with current brand heads not really seeing their role as champions of the brand promise, and many of whom see themselves as too senior to be involved in execution...(but isn't this exactly the place where the strategy meets the customer?) This suggests that a course correction may be in order to encourage brand marketers to step up and lead with tighter vision and perhaps closer to the traditional brand management role. Read a recent and interesting article from the New York Times called: The Auteur vs. The Committee.
Growing marketing specialists are working on each brand, in a world with multiple customers. Brands need a champion more than ever; someone to protect and drive relevance and resonance of the brand promise as their primary responsibility- along with highly tailored metrics- in a spirit of collaboration and trust. And I recommend that company senior management re-establish expectations for brand leads to champion a brand. If it continues to fall in the middle, brands will be weakened by brand leads not wanting to step up and deal with the political ramifications of saying no to someone or some group or some agency...
This is further exasperated in the pharmaceutical industry, where brand teams are often large and span multiple customers, physician and consumer. This creates situations with many same-level brand team members working across different channels and platforms, often with not enough oversight in the area of whether their strategies, tactics and execution are strengthening the brand core promise. The continued move away from block buster drugs may help to refocus and resize brand teams, but there still needs to be a greater focus on ensuring a strong brand promise is well established in all processes, across all disciplines, including offline and online education, communications, clinical development etc.
How do you develop and integrate digital strategy? I hope that you'll leave your ideas and comments below!
I hope to write more on the changing role of marketing managers in future posts.
Thanksgiving is here!
What is your brand thankful for?
Thanksgiving is here!
What is your brand thankful for?
Growth and Engagement?
Happy Thanksgiving to one and all!
What Would Google Do? What would the fastest-growing company in history and a model for thinking in new ways do? Even this week, Google makes waves with their launch of their new android-based Nexus One (MIT Says Yes).
Welcome to the second of a four part serious for Consumer and Pharma/Healthcare Marketers looking to tame the rigors of 2010... If you missed post 1, read: What Would Steve Jobs Do? And by all means, I hope you'll stay tuned for What Would Jake and Rocket Do? And What Would Savvy Marketers Do?
"Once upon a time, all roads led to Rome. Today, all roads lead from Google." - Jeff Jarvis
What Would Google Do?
1. Focus on the user and all else will follow. Design with simplicity. Google strives to provide the best user experience possible—from the user/customer’s point of view. Google often forgoes paying for marketing and instead focuses on creating something so great that customers distribute it—it goes viral.
2. Don't try to control content and distribution. Instead think about creating open networks that sit on platforms. Think in distributer ways. Go to your consumer whenever and however you can. This is the opposite of most companies (even still) that think centralized and make consumers come to them. They spend large dollars to advertise to attract consumers. Many try to make their home pages into destinations. In sum, while many internet sites think of themselves as an end- Google thinks of itself as a means. While many see the job of their home page is to take you to where they want you to go, Google sees its home page as the way to get you to where you want to go. Google distributes itself. It puts its ads on millions of web pages it does not own, earning billions of dollars for these sites and for itself. Google enables others to use tools as they wish. They know their own needs.
Think of your site as ‘answers for every question you can imagine’.
3. See yourself not as a product, but a service, a platform, a means of enabling others. Help others build value. Google has many platforms to help its customers. e.g.: Blogger for publishing content, Picasa for pictures, Google docs etc.
4. Cede control. Embrace ‘Publicness’ and openness. Transform your relationship with the public in every quarter in the organization. You may extend this new relationship in many ways from blogging, interacting with bloggers, enabling customers to critique your products or services (hard to do in Pharma) and sharing ideas. Overtime, you may even truly involve customers in the real-time design process for products and/or services…
But 'Publicness' is about more than having a web site. It's about taking actions in public so people can see what you do and react to it, make suggestions, and tell their friends. Living in public today is a matter of enlightened self-interest. You have to be public to be found. Every time you decide not to make something public, you create the risk of a customer not finding you or not trusting you because you're keeping secrets. Publicness is also an ethic. The more public you are, the easier you can be found, the more opportunities you have. (For more on privacy (and publicness) read this insightful blog by Jeff Jarvis.
5. Bring them "elegant organization". Ask how you can bring constituents, customers, community-even your competitors- elegant organization. Create value through links. Replace focus on mass market with focus on mass of niches. Understand that the economy is made up of a mass of niches-the aggregation of the long tail. Small is the new big.
6. Extract the minimum value from the network so it will grow to maximum size and value. In other words, charge as little as the market will bear.
7. You don't need to be at your desk to need an answer. Google is looking to fuel greater innovation for mobile users everywhere with Android, their free, open source mobile platform. It sure feels like 2010 will be the ‘year of unprecedented mobile growth'...
8. Move faster-not slower. Most companies say this in reference to making sure they move fast to develop new products and services. Google means this from a user experience because they know how valuable time is to their customers.
9. Do one thing really, really well. Google does search, and in their continuous focus for improvement of search, it spurs other applications and new products/services. But they never seem to forget the role search plays in their business strategy.
10. Great just isn't good enough.... Being great is a starting point, not an endpoint. Ultimately, our constant dissatisfaction with the way things are becomes the driving force behind everything we do.
Is Google the only one who knows how to survive and prosper in the internet age? Stay tuned.
This week, I came across two presentations that made me stop and refocus my thoughts on writing and delivering effective and engaging presentations. The first was a terrific five minute video interview of author Carmine Gallo (The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs: How to Be Insanely Great in Front of Any Audience) outlining the 5 points he attributes to Steve Job's incredible success as one of today's most engaging speakers. The second was the announcement that "Health Care Napkins", created by Dan Roam with Tony Jones, was the winner of the "World's Best Presentation 2009" by Slideshare.net and Business Week.
click on image to watch video on ABC
The 5 Techniques that help make Steve Jobs a truly great presenter:
1. Introduce an antagonist. Every presentation is a theatrical experience: "Every great drama has a hero and a villain." Steve Jobs explains the problem and leads the way for the hero...
2. Twitter-friendly headlines. Each Apple product has a simple name and a short and concise descriptive headline or sound bite e.g. macbookair-"The World's Thinnest Notebook"
3. Sell dreams--not computer hardware, or a product. Jobs sells ‘transformative experiences'-what is it about our product that will change someone's life?
4. Practice Zen like simplicity-‘the elimination of clutter'. You won't see bullet points. You won't see many words.
5. Relentless Practice. Practice. And More Practice.
Here's the winning slide presentation by Dan Roam: Health Reform on the back of the napkin style.
You won't see traditional bullets or heavy text. You will see a great story unfold with interesting visuals and devices to engage the reader.
Dan Roam's lesson to us all:
There is no such thing as boring knowledge.
There are only boring ways to present it.
Two Great Books on Presentations
Having sat through many a ‘boring' PowerPoint and podium presentation, and having done my own share of, what we at BMS used to fondly refer to as, ‘deck a day' PowerPoint presentations for Sr. Management, requiring an abundance of time internally-focused vs. externally or customer- focused, I have become a huge fan of Garr Reynold's Presentation Zen and Nancy Duarte ‘s Slide:ology. Both books are excellent sources for kinder, simpler, and more visually pleasing presentations-and did I mention more engaging and effective? Both start with the objective and the story you want to tell; both encourage planning and storyboarding to get it right.
Common themes for better PowerPoint presentations:
1. Start with the end in mind; what is the story that you want to tell?
2. Know your audience-what is important to them?
3. Outline your content; sketch out objectives and ideas in pen and paper. Plan in ‘analog', with no use of technology-storyboard the presentation
4. Have a sound, clear structure throughout (this is more than an agenda page up front)
5. Be vigilant about clarity of message-- only one idea to a slide
6. Put yourself in the shoes of the audience and ask "so what?"...if it's not relevant, cut...
7. Bring each point to life. This means minimal use of bullets and copy, and heavy use of visuals, photography and color (If you have charts of data, you might consider handing this information out separately at the end of the presentation...)
8. Good presentations include stories. The best presenters illustrate their points with the use of stories, most often personal ones.
9. Keep it simple, but not simplistic
10. The more you are on top of the material- the design, flow and rehearsal, the more success.
Pharma: Just Say No To More Bullets!
Now is the time for Pharma to rethink how we present information to colleagues, partners, physicians, customers, government. By taking a few lessons from these experts, more time thinking about how to craft content and message, Pharma can begin to tell more engaging and effective stories that the audience may actually want to listen to, learn from, and take action.
Won't you join me in saying NO to more bullets, and YES to initiating a new way to communicate?
Additional Helpful Links:
Presentation I did to FDA Risk Communication Advisory Committee: Considering Neuroscience to Improve Communications
Sample Slides By Garr Reynolds
Presentation Zen: Simple Ideas On Presentation Design and Delivery
Think Like a Designer
Ten Reasons Presentations Will Make It Big in 2009 -#2 Speakers
As Marketers, we've long been conditioned to "sell", also known as the fourth Marketing P: Promotion. Increasingly, however, the world of Marketing is shifting from a model of selling and shouting to one of listening, engagement, dialogue and education. Pharma is no exception to this change. A recent study by about.com outlined in eMarketer points to success with current pharma advertising, but also highlights opportunities for improvement that are consistent with the continued shift in consumer mindset.
Following diagnosis from their Physician, most consumers use the web to find more information about their condition, a smaller percent use search engines to better understand treatment options or the particular medication that they've been prescribed. Only 35% trust what the doctor says and fill the prescription without further search or education.
Currently, more than four in 10 Internet users told About.com that pharma ads made them aware of treatment options and educated them about symptom and conditions; 17% felt like they could speak more knowledgeably with their doctor because of pharmaceutical advertising.
After seeing healthcare ads, 38% of respondents said they talked with their doctor and 36% researched the advertised drug online. In addition, 13% of Internet users visited the pharmaceutical company's Website.
When surveyed about what would catch their attention, Internet users were most likely to say info about specific conditions (29%) and medication side effects (28%); also information about how to cope with the condition (20%), followed by free trial offers (18%).
How Can Pharma Continue to Improve Engagement and Communication?
- Combine 'relevant' education into every communication; surround the target consumer/patient with a mix of branded and unbranded communications, and branded and educational messaging.
- Consider where the patient is along the treatment pathway and customize engagement to reflect information and education needs. Adding a personalized touch can dramatically help improve trial or web sign-ups. (See more on Personalization in my next blog)
- Don't be afraid to speak to the potential side effects; balanced benefit and risk information is what consumers (and FDA) want. Most consumers recognize that along with the benefits of a particular treatment comes some side effect(s)--why not provide the information upfront, including potential ways to deal with the side effects...This might also begin to instill a bond of trust and authenticity...Moving forward, pharma companies will do well by providing easy to understand risk-benefit comparisons for consumers...
- Shout the condition that your medication treats to increase stopping power. While this might sound obvious, many online and off line DTC ads continue to overlook the need to scream the condition they are treating. With the onslaught of messages that a typical consumer sees each day, this is a costly mistake, but one that is relatively easy to fix. (Marketers and Advertising Creatives alike often hate to shout out the condition thinking its redundant or isn't visually elegant, but its often the single best way to immediately grab your patients' attention. It usually takes one round of qualitative for marketers and their agencies to be convinced...)
- Don't just focus on your medication--Help patients and their families treat and cope with the 'whole' condition and the 'whole' person. This goes beyond providing a few tips or tools or links to third parties...and goes beyond any one advertisement.
- Listen First-Sell Later. Everyday consumers are telling us that they don't want to be sold to or shouted at, but engaged in a meaningful conversation, to hear from others like themselves. How best to understand someone's needs and wants if not by listening first?
Bob Poole has written a great book with many, thoughtful nuggets to consider:
Customers and prospects know their problems much better than you do. Don't make the mistake of thinking that you already have the solutions. To assume you know the solution before you really understand the problem, is like a physician writing a prescription before making a diagnosis.
Learn to listen -really listen. It's how you establish trust, rapport, and relationships.
Listen. Create value. Follow through. Keep your word. Maintain the relationship. Listen more.
Stop being a salesperson. Become a solutions provider. You'll be much more productive. It's more fun. And, it's the right thing to do.
People have to buy YOU before they buy anything FROM you.
Burn your story into the hearts and minds of the people who want-who need-to hear it. We can all create and tell stories that are entertaining, educational, and emotional.
What kind of fun are you building into your business? When is the last time you did something fun with your customers?
Pharma: Which do you do first, Listen or Sell? As an industry, isn't it time we made listening a greater priority? If we listen first, won't engagement and increased sales follow? Thoughts?
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...)
- With the economic woes, it seems that more people are actually staying home and spending time in front of the tube--According to Nielsen, the average American watches 151 hours of TV in a month, an all time high (Daily Orange News).
- TV advertising continues to illicit a high degree of take action and trust. The 2009 Rodale Prevention Study reports that on average 33% of people who see any DTC ads talk about the specific medicine with their doctor that hey saw or heard advertised. (The eight year average is 33%, though the last four years have seen more year-to-year volatility. BTW, the study also shows continued growth of web use: 37% report discussing medical information they found online with their doctor.) Further, according to the latest Nielsen Global Consumer Survey: 62% of consumers said they trust TV advertising, equal to or better than all other forms of advertising, including print, radio, online banners etc. (but not equal to recommendations from people they know or from virtual friends)
- Over the last few years, the TV industry continues to experiment with some very interesting and creative formats to drive impact and engagement. (Adweek: Networks Try New Ways of Getting Viewers to Watch Ads; TV Ads are Less Effective)
Last week, I stumbled upon Wayne Attwell's blog Integrating TV with Online Marketing where he was talking about how traditional media advertising (in this case TV), with it's diminishing efficacy and relevance, could be integrated into the new online marketing model. He was proposing that marketers forgo the traditional 'reach and frequency' model in lieu of using the medium to introduce consumers to the online information pathway. And then let the online 'word of mouse' take over assuming a quality product etc.
All this got me thinking about the use of TV in Pharma and whether it still offers an opportunity especially as DTC budgets shrink and there seems to be less and less mega brands and their corresponding 'mega' budgets. Additionally, the increasing economic and generic pressures for branded pharma overall, are negatively impacting ROIs across the board, and expected to continue.
This all suggests that any use of TV needs to be effective and efficient. Thinking about Pharma and Healthcare marketing, and the recent changes brewing in TV advertising, there now seem to be at least six different ways of executing TV:
- Traditional Branded TV ads to drive awareness and MD requests. Branded TV planning is executed against the standard 'reach and frequency' models, and read with continuous tracking studies measuring brand and advertising awareness, and importantly, take action and change in brand sentiment etc...Likely, the branded TV campaign is part of branded print (beyond fulfillment of DDMAC regulations) and web banner ads, sponsorships, SEM etc. This is the most expensive use of TV advertising and requires the largest media commitment. But despite all the noise, TV can be very effective in driving brand awareness and action for the right target audience and product.
- Unbranded Direct Response TV ads to drive response via a free informational offer or incentive. DRTV is generally bought on a cost per lead (CPL) and cost per qualified lead (QPQL) basis. Once consumers respond via phone or web, they can opt-in to further branded and educational relationship marketing streams. Since the only focus of these ads is to educate, communicate and romance an offer, they are generally the most efficient from a lead generation perspective and ensure motivated 'hand raisers' (much like the concept of web search...reaching a prospective patient who is interested enough to take action). Unbranded ads can also appeal to a different segment of consumers who prefer to educate themselves and experience less "advertising sell" than those motivated by branded 'sell' ads.
Another positive of DRTV is that it can generally be purchased with less lead time than print or network TV buys, and can be quickly 'turned off' if lead generation objectives aren't met. Because lead gen is the primary objective, media budgets can be effective with a few million dollars or scale to larger dollars, but DRTV ads aren't competing to break through the clutter the same way that traditional branded ads have to. On the negative side, DRTV inventory can be an issue during certain times of the year or events, making it difficult to clear the number of ads that a brand may want to run to reach its lead gen goals. Further, because of the multi-step approach involved in opting-in to RM materials, time to action is generally less immediate than for a branded TV ad.
- Direct Response Hybrid Branded TV ads to drive awareness, MD requests, but also some response to an informational or monetary offer. This type of ad may also be bought with a combination of traditional Reach and Frequency and/or Direct Response. From my experience, the hybrid is just that, and will generally not achieve as efficient CPLs because there is less time dedicated to romancing the offer due to DTC fair balance. So it comes down to the particular brand's objectives (and in pharma's case often how much fair balance) whether this type of hybrid TV ad is viable or preferred vs. branded alone or offer only.
- Branded Entertainment and Promotional TV adsto generate explosive awareness and drive online marketing and engagement. Here the goal isn't the standard reach and frequency, but to incite the target's attention and drive them to the web and/or social platforms for further dialog and relationship building. Often controversial in nature, these ads are developed, less for continuous and multiple exposures, and more for immediate impact and shorter runs. The difficulty here is that it can be hard to predict whether a particular campaign will generate the WOM or 'word of mouse' needed to pull off this kind of strategy, not to mention the production cost of TV ads these days...
Marketers outside pharma are aggressively experimenting with branded entertainment, including new ad formats in online TV shows, ads embedded in VOD, interactive TV ads and more...Assuming an excellent product/service, if a brand can produce a truly entertaining TV ad that ignites buzz and swift response of target consumers to continue the conversation off line, then Pharma can reduce overall TV media spending while still using TV for strategic advantages: immediate broad reach and bang...
5. Advertainment TV ads to encourage greater consumer interaction with TV content. The essence of Advertainment is the last minute addition of information to a TV ad in order to increase the topicality of the ad and to create an "as live" feel to communications. A major benefit is that it creates additional reward for the viewer, which can be either information-led or prize-led. Advertainment also allows an interaction with customers by using technology that updates the message on the ad throughout a program. Alternatively, advertisers can run a series of live interactive promotions during the ad breaks where viewers can vote via TXT, SMS, online or telephone. EG. Fuller's London Pride (beer) used advertainment TV to break through during the Rugby World Cup. The advertainment technology allowed Fuller's to incorporate the latest match scores within their ads during half-time and full-time- giving viewers communication with real currency. By the end of the campaign the brand had achieved its highest sales and brand share.Other E.G., Ford Focus, Action-ManAction Figures.This kind of advertising also has the potential to add value to an existing communications strategy and make the TV experience, and the brand, more exciting and surprising for the viewer, creating impact and WOM/PR opportunities. (Source: UK TV Toolbox, Thinkbox.tv
6. Reality TV ads seek their inspiration from documentary and reality TV techniques for innovative ways to emotionally engage consumers. E.G. For smokers trying to quit, a major comfort factor and motivator is knowing that others are having similar experiences. In Europe, Nicoquitin found a real-life quitter and aired her video diary in real time on TV, from her decision to quit onwards. These reality TV ads were broadcast in spots where the message would be most pertinent. People were engaged by the woman's journey; the brand achieved cut through in a cluttered market. Results:173k people pressed red to find out more, sales increased by 40% and tracking showed that the ad succeeded in maintaining peak season awareness levels out of season (Source: UK Innovative TV ad formats thinkbox.tv)
Building on existing local events and targeted marketing, Verizon FiOS took reality advertising one step further, creating My Home2.0 makeover/reality show that documents tech-challenged families learning to use the screens, gadgets, and tools that FiOS enables. The show provided a platform to unite previously disparate efforts, and to provide communications stream reflecting the family's stories-on line, on TV and in person-with FiOS as a subtle superhero. A third example: MTV partnered with Dove and Alicia Keys on a five-part micro-series that aired during breaks in The Hills and followed the lives of three young roommates in New York. (Source: Adweek Don't Touch That Dial. Networks Try New Ways)
2010 Planning: While web and social media budgets will undoubtedly increase, and should, TV's proven effectiveness for certain targets shouldn't be overlooked. What role should TV play: awareness, response, entertainment, story-telling, engagement? Which of the above type(s) of TV ads make the most sense to help a brand achieve its objectives?
I've been part of many successful integrated TV campaigns. Recently, I was part of a new marketing effort for a small brand that stopping direct response TV in favor of a web and in-office marketing program... only to be disappointed with prescription sales...so it suggests to me that a well executed TV campaign can still be a viable element in the media mix. The question is how to drive maximum effectiveness and efficiency...how for TV companies, clients and agencies to work together to create new ways to engage today's healthcare consumers...and how to continue the conversation online and in Social Media platforms.
Thoughts or considerations?