Here are but a few of the many thoughtful blogs and predictions written in 2011 covering pharma marketing, social media and ePatient happenings...
“It wouldn’t be New Year’s if I didn’t have regrets.” -William Thomas
What did you learn this year?
What will you do differently in 2012?
Enjoy...and wishing you all a most joyous, healthy and prosperous new year!
Pharma Marketing and #fdasm
AZ Heatlh Connections: FDA Issues Social Media Guidance, Real World Challenges to Communicating Real World Experience
Back of the Book: Is Your Brand Healthy and Thriving? Complementary eBook
ePharma Rx: Social Media Posts That Keep Pharma Up at Night
exl Digital Pharma Blog: Transform or Be Transformed: Digital Pharma East Day 2 Wrap-up
GSK: First In Health: The Medical Home Approach to Disease Management
Health Affairs Blog: Patient Medication Aderence: The Next Act
Healthy Conversations: New Insights for Healthcare Marketers: IBM Global CMO Study
Ignite Health: The Ticket Store Game Launches Online
Impactivity: How Can We...?, Doc Driven or Rep Driven?
Med 2.0: The 6 P's of Social Health- Reflections on SXSH 2011
Pew Internet & American Life Project: Pew Internet Health, The Social Life of Health Information 2011
Pharma Marketing Blog: Social Media Guidelines May be Moot if This Court Decision Holds Up
Pharma Executive Blog: Should the US Gamble with Risk Sharing?, 10 Emergency Brand Building Questions
Pixels and Pills: Adapt or Die: Why Pharma Needs To Get In Line, The Tyranny of Tech: Can Your Business Work Unplugged?
Science Roll: 12 Predictions for Healthcare, Technology and Innovation in 2012, Top Medical Social Media Stories of 2011
Siren Song and PharmPhorum: Rare Disease Patients are the Power Users of Social Media
Wall Street Health Blog: Best of the Health Blog 2011: CDC’s Zombie Warnings, Lipitor and Steve Jobs
ePharma and Social Media
Back of the Book: Pharma: Are you Ready to Optimize Your Digital Strategy Now?
Dose of Digital: Digital marketing Lessons From 2011's Top Memes , The Right Way to Use the Facebook Like Button
Eye on FDA: A Pharms Social Media Overview, Will Pharma Embrace Google+?
Edleman Health Barometer: Must Reads: Digital Innovation Opportunity in Health
Health is Social: X% Body + Y% Words + Z% Pheremones = The Enigma of Social Media
PharmaPhorum and Social Moon: 6 of the Best: Digital Predictions for 2012 Part 2, Part 1
Mayo Clinic: Kidney Donor Found Via Social Media
Why Dot Pharma: Why Pharma Engagement on Twitter Matters
World of DTC Marketing: Some New Fundamental Features Every Health Site Should Have
exl Digital Pharma: Think Mobile. Think Small- 14 Mobile Musts From the Mobile Experts
Intouch Solutions: Looking Forward to 2012: Mobile is Everywhere
mHealth Insight: Telecare Aware Provocative mHealth Presentation
Path of the Blue Eye: Mobile Health: Hype or Hope
PharmaPhorum and Ignite Health: mHealth- The Challenges and Opportunities Facing Mobile Electronic Health Records
Pharma Marketing Blog: Games vs. Mobile Health Monitoring Devices- Which is a Better Motivator?
ePatients and Physicians
ePatient Dave: 2010, 11,12: Patient Engagement Rising, Right into the Media Lab's Hackathon
ePatients.net: Nancy Finn: Personalized Medicine and Participatory Medicine Intersect, Ellen Hoenig Carlson: Patients Beware: 1 out of 3 Subject to Hospital Error
DC Patient: The 5 Myths of Patient Engagement With HIT
Diabetes Mine: The Best Of the Diabetes Bogosphere, Diabetes Advocacy Orgs: 2011 Milestones and What To Expect in 2012
Digital Medicine: Infographic: Rise of the Digital Doctor
Healthcare Blog: How Doctors Die
Kevin MD: The Rise of Citizen Scientists and Patient Initiated Research, Patients Who Bill Their Doctor For Being Late, I Eat Lunch With Drug Company Representatives and I'm Proud Of It
Not Running A Hospital: Really The Most Significant?
Nurse Loretta: Diabetes Doesn't Have to Slow You Down- Get Tested- Especially Young Adults and Teens!
Patient POV: Patient POV's Best of 2011
Pharma Strategy blog: Making a Difference in the Lives of Cancer Patients: An Interview with Dr. Charles Sawyers
Siren Song: The Social Media Sites Physicians Use
Six Until Me: We're More Than Our Numbers, 30 Things About My Invisible Illness 2011, e-Patient Connections: A Patient Checks In
The Well Blog: The Provider Will See You Now
33 Charts: Distracted Doctoring
I'm sure that I missed many a good post. Feel free to add ones that you particularly like in the comments section! Cheers!
Image source: Traveling Content's Blog
If I were allowed but one word to describe Day 2 of ExL's Digital Pharma East Conference #digpharm, it would have to be the urgent need for transformation—the need for Pharma Co's to work faster than ever to effect internal change and to jump start meeting current and evolving customer expectations.
Throughout both days actually, speakers talked about the industry having to move from brand marketing to customer marketing, to move on your own with change or risk getting moved by others… and creating your own ‘Kodak moment’ or worse yet becoming a dinosaur…
To read the full article "Transform Or Be Transformed. ExL Digital Pharma East Conference- Day 2 Wrap-up", click here to go to ExL's Digital Pharma blog.
Stay tuned for Day 3's Digital Pharma East- Mobile Day Wrap-up...
If you missed Day 1's Digital Pharma East Wrap-up, "Loaded for Bear", click here
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.
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:
The eBook includes links to helpful articles and recent books that are particularly relevant to the five risk factors. We wish to thank each of the authors for being able to leverage their valuable content.
We hope these pages will provoke plenty of ideas and discussion for boosting your business. We would be delighted to hear your thoughts or comments below.
Wishing your brand "good health"!
If you are new to the blog, and you like what you read, we hope that you’ll sign up for continued articles via email or RSS feed.
Design credit: Laura Steur-Alvarez
Photography: iStockphoto, Getty, and Bigstock
In a world where we are bombarded by information, targeted by mass media and social networks, what can we do to make our message heard? How can healthcare, DTC and consumer marketers dimensionalize communications in a way that draws attention and focuses learning to important information and messaging?
Data visualization provides an increasingly powerful means to not only communicate information clearly and effectively, but the wise will consider it critical to help position their companies and brands in digital marketing today.
As outlined by FFunction in it's report 'Data Visualization: How To Position Your Company in Digital Marketing', "The power of visualizations comes from the fact that they stimulate the brain in a different way, by focusing attention on the sensorial and rational sides simultaneously. They act as a discovery game that incites one to focus on the displayed information that might otherwise be left unnoticed."
This is further supported by Dr. John Medina in his work, Brain Rules: Rule#10 Vision Trumps All Other Senses.
Other recent articles: Ad Age Digital's Why Data Visualization is About To Become Very Important for Your Brand by Oren Frank, AdWeek's: Seeing is Believing by Bob Greenwood and NYTimes: When The Data Stuts Its Self by Natasha Singer provide additional support for this growing field.
One has only to watch the animated statistics -developed by Dr. Rosling and Gapminder- to show the disparities in health and wealth around the world to see the power of advanced animation visualization to help viewers spot trends on their own. Dr. Rosling's video clip from the BBC on health and wealth statistics has been viewed more than four million times on YouTube.
As Natasha Singer writes, "Visual analytics play off the idea that the brain is more attracted to and able to process dynamic images than long lists of numbers. But the goal of information visualization is not simply to represent millions of bits of data as illustrations. It is to prompt visceral comprehension, moments of insight that make viewers want to learn more."
"The purpose of visualization is insight, not pictures", says Ben Shneiderman, founding director of the Human-computer Interaction Laboratory at the University of Maryland.
The growing field of 'data visualization' (DaViz), beyond its original roots in academia and science, has implications for companies, governments, marketers, agencies...For just about anybody who wants to convey huge amounts of information in visual, interactive displays.
- Can data itself become an asset of a brand and a pillar to visually enhance the brand's story? Can DaViz even suggest a new product idea?
- Can DaViz help garner attention and encourage learning and action? Should it be included in every new creative brief to act as a strong reminder for creative exploration?
- What opportunities can DaViz offer for pharma companies as they think about how to most clearly communicate and motivate consumers, doctors and even sales people? For example, could 'tree mapping' offer unique ways to more clearly communicate and motivate sales reps?
- Does DaViz offer unique opportunities to create next generation dashboards that can help consumers better understand lots of data and increase positive behavior? e.g.: making sense of daily blood sugar scores, exercise regimens, cholesterol numbers etc.
But like anything, there are benefits and risks. With Data Visualization, customers can become more engaged when visuals help them filter information and allow them to make discoveries on their own.
On the risk side, Professor Shneiderman warns that tools as powerful as visualization have the potential to mislead, or confuse consumers. And privacy implications can arise as increasing amounts of personal, medical, financial data... become widely accessible, searchable and viewable.[via NYTimes article]
But given how our digital society is evolving, with data being produced at an exceptional rate, I think it is undeniable that DaViz will become increasingly important to each and every marketer and business person today. It is poised to become an important element of brand marketing going forward.
If you enjoyed this article, please sign up for additional ones via email or RSS feed.
Illustrations: 1) The World of Data, Oliver Munday for GOOD.is, October, 2010; published by A Lapierre and S Pierre 11 25 2010, Data Visualization- How to Position Your Company in Digital Marketing. 2) What is Data Visualization? Infographic explaining data visualization, visually. See below.
With the exponential growth in mobile adoption, technology and new apps, mobile is on everyone's list for 2011 and beyond, and rightfully so. The mobile "product" and "channel" offers numerous opportunities for all marketers, healthcare and pharma included.
Consider some of the facts:
- Mobile will be the primary digital connection for both existing and new customers. [Forester]
- Today there are well over 400M phones in the US, over 350M applications available for the iPhone and counting with more than 10B downloads. [Forester]
- Mobile users will surpass desktop users in 5 years. Mobile growth is the fastest in communications history. [Mary Meeker, KPCB]
- Physician adoption of mobile devices is astounding. Chilmark Research estimates 100% of physicians will have a smart phone and use content apps by 12/31/2013--with touchscreen tablet saturation by 2015. Smartphone Apps now focus on communication, alerts and decision support. Clinical reference content is currently leading mHealth apps, but will evolve with the growth of iPad and other touchscreen tablets to provide more flexibility, personalization, patient education...
- Of the 85% of American adults who use a cell phone, 17% of cell owners have used their phone to look up health or medical information and 29% of cell owners ages 18-29 have done such searches. [Pew Internet Mobile Health 2010]
I listened to Julie Ask from Forester provide her thoughts for marketers: Top 5 Mobile Imperatives. [A FierceWireless Webcast]
Here are the five key takeaways, with plenty of implications for Pharma and Healthcare Marketers developing mobile health strategies:
- Drive Towards Convenience- Forester considers a product or service convenient if: The Sum of Benefits > The Sum of Inhibitors. Mobile services- both web and applications- should address three core benefits: Immediacy, Simplicity and Context (which today usually involves location, time of day or past user behavior). Delivering on these core benefits is critical to delivering a positive customer experience. What does simplicity mean for different patient segments? How do you provide context for your patients? doctors?
- Focus On Customer Needs- Go beyond pure marketing or selling to offer value add content and services. "What's in it for them?" e.g.: Walgreens new "refill by scan" fulfilled patients' needs for easy prescription refills. Customers appreciate when their needs are met!
- Mobile Is As Much Product as Channel. This suggests not limiting mobile to just marketing or commerce- but introducing companion mobile services. Mobile can support customers throughout their journey. How can mobile support your patients/ caregivers throughout their health or treatment journey? During discovery and consideration, physician identification and dialog, pharmacy purchase, trial, retention, and if you are lucky enough, advocacy?
- Divorce the PC. The addition of new technologies will push mobile phones well beyond the PC. e.g.: Remote health monitoring; 3d cameras enabling augmented reality, gesture control; chemical sensors enabling breathalyzer, food freshness, CO detection etc.
It's also critical to think about mobile as its own product and channel and not to force current web graphics or tools into mobile applications. The mobile experience is driven by different factors than the 'desktop web' experience--use case, location, urgency. Improving the Mobile experience can't be accomplished by measuring activity alone like might be done for web--requires understanding of behaviors based on what consumers are doing and seeing with their mobile device in the real world, and requires ability to identify where consumers/patients are struggling with mobile user experience.
- Be Nimble. Mobile is dynamic...plenty of uncertainty is in the horizon such as: new devices- just as the iPad came in- will disrupt; new means for controlling devices such as the Kinect will change our paradigms for how we control machines; new business models will appear; mobile will replace existing devices, tools and services; user context will be multi-dimensional etc. Focusing on on-going improvement is a must...as technology and learning evolves.
And there are always the specific considerations to work through for Pharma and Healthcare Marketers:
What are you most excited about for mobile health? How are you fulfilling doctor or consumer needs with new mobile strategies? Where do you see the greatest challenges?
For additional reading: The Influence of Mobile Apps on Pharma: an eyeforpharma special report; the Path of the Blue Eye Project's first breakfast presentation Mobile Health: Hype and Hope by Jane Sarasohn-Kahn,of THINK-Health; Four More Must-Read Mobile Health Reports by mobilehealthnews, including slides below from their webinar last month; Mobile Health 2010 by Susannah Fox, Pew Internet
Photo image credit: Courtney Justice-The Cournell Group / stock credit: M. Brubeck
Walgreens Refill By Scan image-credit: Business Wire
In our ever-changing media landscape, coupled with increasingly powerful ePatient communities, a demand for new standards has arisen. As a result, Pharma [and in reality all marketers] must accelerate their skills in six key areas to separate their marketing communications, and become brand champions.
Read the full article in DTC Perspectives March 2011: Tough Demands to Galvanize Marketing Communications: 2011 Brand Champions Will Possess Six Key Skills.
Every marketer knows that spurring brand and patient success requires building on wisdom from the past, while honing new abilities to educate, motivate and converse with patients and their families. Savvy marketers know that the 4P's - also renamed SIVA [Solution, Information, Value, Access] to provide greater customer focus- have never been more critical. In addition, 2011 brand champions are challenged to create Michael Porter's "shared value", accelerating skills in six areas:
- Dynamic listening and action, real-time. Astute marketers take dynamic listening seriously- they know who to listen to, where to listen, what's most important to take note of, and are eminently geared to take action by responding nimbly to new learning. Champion marketers know that listening without action is as dangerous as acting without listening.
- Curating information and content marketing to deliver value to patients, families and their communities. Be vigilant: curating and content marketing require a different mindset than traditional copy writing. The first is more educational in nature and the second, designed to get the reader to take a specific action, is inherently more "salesy." Both are critical for successful marketers today; both can help the other work harder.
- Pinpointing boundary-less consumers at that critical moment of truth--when they are in need or curious to learn. Media planning used to be easy; now there are many more options to consider, each with distinct creative and technical needs, without an easy formula. Should you be actively considering mobile health technologies? YouTube?
- Communicating for an ADHD-like world. Is the Internet Changing the Way You think? edited by John Brockman, shows a continual theme among both the enthusiasts and skeptics; the Internet isn't changing the way we think, it is exacerbating the deceptively simple challenge of "attention management"...the new Darwinian imperative may be "the survival of the focused."
- Relinquishing the struggle for control. Controlled customer communication is a dream from the past. "One result of the Internet revolution is that 'the people formerly known as the patients/audience' became publishers and broadcasters-and pundits and critics". [Lee Rainie, Pew Internet Project Online Health Seeking]
- Catalyzing growing teams of specialists. Keeping a brand, its specialists and partners in lockstep takes new facilitation, integration and leadership skills to insure seamless delivery and a focused brand message, look and feel.
Fair warning; these critical skills won't be best learned by reading a bestseller, taking in a webinar or delegating to a junior team member or vendor; they require ongoing experimenting and doing. As Malcolm Gladwell points out, it takes 10,000 hours of focused practice to become a consistently great performer.
Champions know that there's nothing new about upgrading and honing new skills--it's the practice of a lifetime. For DTC marketers, the task gets more complex every year. Choosing what to learn, where to focus, when to bring in new expertise will be a big part of what boosts the champs over the finish.
Any important skills I might have missed?
Which Pharma companies do you think are working hard to accelerate the use of these six skills? Sanofi-Aventis? Novo Nordisk? Roche? AstraZeneca?
Look forward to your thoughts.
February 28th is Rare Disease Day , a day dedicated to raising awareness of the nearly 7,000 rare diseases affecting nearly 30 million Americans. In other words, as many as one in ten Americans are suffering from a rare disease.
Globally, rare diseases affect more than 250 Million people. [Read more on FDA's site for Rare Disease] Find out how you can support Rare Disease awareness at NORD and EURORDIS
In the U.S., a rare disease is one that affects fewer than 200,000 people. This definition comes from the Orphan Drug Act of 1983 and is slightly different from the definition used in Europe.
Besides dealing with their specific medical problems, people with rare diseases struggle to get a proper diagnosis, find information, get treatment and to connect with others like themselves. As expected, the rarity of their conditions makes everything more difficult.
With the explosive growth of the internet and social media platforms, people with rare diseases are connecting at unprecedented rates. Rare disease marketing is fast becoming the poster child for pharma's version of long-tail marketing.
Today, Susannah Fox (@SusannahFox) of the Pew Internet & American Life Project issued a report "Peer-to-Peer Healthcare" based on a national telephone survey of 3,001 people in September, 2010 and an online survey of 2,156 members of the National Organization of Rare Disorders (NORD) in December, 2010. [You can also read Wendy White's blog at Siren Interactive outlining her take on rare disease insights coming out of the Pew study.]
- People are increasingly looking for others like themselves. One in four internet users living with chronic diseases (23%) say they've gone online to find others with similar health concerns. By contrast, 15% of internet users who report no chronic conditions have sought such help online. And not surprisingly, those living with rare diseases who responded to the online survey far outpaced all other groups, including those living with chronic conditions, in tapping the wisdom of their peer network.
- Some of the most notable interactions involve people who meet online for the first time. This was especially the case in the rare disease community
- When asked about the last time they had a health issue, 70% of adults in the U.S. say they received information, care, or support from a health professional. Fifty-four percent of adults say they turned to friends and family. Twenty percent of adults say they turned to others who have the same heath condition. I agree with Susannah Fox, "The oft-expressed fear that patients are using the web to self-diagnose and self-medicate without reference to medical professionals did not emerge in our telephone survey or special rare disease survey. Advice from peers is a supplement to what a doctor or nurse may have to say about a health situation that arises."
- Despite media and online hype, the majority of health care conversations happen offline; Just 5% of adults say they received online information, care, or support from a health professional, 13% say they had online contact with friends and family, and 5% say they interacted online with fellow patients.
- Patients are using professionals and peers for different kinds of information. When asked who is more helpful when you need a certain type of healthcare information, doctors and healthcare professionals scored highest for technical information, including medical diagnosis, information about prescription drugs and recommendations for other doctors or hospitals--where as fellow patients, friends and family scored highest for obtaining emotional support in dealing with a health issue and a quick remedy for an everyday health issue. Both groups were equally helpful in providing practical advice for coping with day-to-day health situations.
What can Pharma and patient marketers learn from the Rare Disease Community and their love of internet connectivity and peer-to-peer healthcare?
Perhaps it comes down to this...
"Alone we are rare. Together we are strong."