Stop talking digital and start thinking patients

KEY TAKEAWAY: Digital marketing is not a bunch of tactics, but rather a way to think about how patients are making healthcare decisions.  

According to a survey by Princeton Research Associates for PhRMA only 11% of all adults has asked for an advertised prescription medication and only 38% have talked to a doctor about an advertised medication.  So why are DTC marketers still spending a lot of money on TV while looking at digital marketing as “tactics”?

According to various research Millennial’s, the biggest demographic segment, want and need mobile health. Why? Because their experience with HCP’s has been, make an appointment, see the doctor and get an Rx.  To them that surely can be done online to save time and money.

Boomer’s, on the other hand, take 4-5 prescription medications and even though they trust their doctor they still go online to research health problems and prescription medications. We do hear of some pharma companies trying to break through with new DTC online marketing, but they are still ignoring the basics.  Consider…

1ne: Most pharma product websites still look like they are using the same template.

2wo: Content is still too complex for most visitors to understand.

3hree: Not one pharma website is using rollovers, with a pop-up box, to define complex medical terms.

4our: The safety information page lacks personal communication.  That is, language they can understand that talks to them as a person.

5ive: Most pharma websites still don’t have content segmented by audience or use cookies to customize content for repeat visitors.

Finally, too many pharma companies are spending too much money on SEO and they don’t even measure what they are getting for their money beyond clicks.

The greatest strength of any DTC marketer is the ability to think like a patient as they enter the complex world of being an empowered patient.  We no longer have the luxury to think that TV is the best way to inform and educate patients.

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