Where pharma digital investment is really needed

Key Takeaway: Online ads are coming under fire for click fraud and debate about their effectiveness, but the one area where pharma digital marketers need to invest is in their product sites and that investment needs continued support.

What most advertisers don’t understand is that the reports they get on impressions, clicks, conversions and data are false.  The frightening part is that no one knows the extent of fraud in online advertising. It has been estimated as high as 90%.   Ad agencies have been particularly negligent in educating their clients about how much they may be losing to ad fraud. Online advertising spending will surpass TV in the next few years. No one wants to disturb that golden goose. However, there are opportunities for pharma digital marketers.

Over the last five years I have spent a LOT of time trying to convince digital marketers the right way to develop and implement a product site.

The biggest challenges are trying to get clients to spend money on market research with their target audience as well as usability testing of site prototypes.  When these steps are skipped we often get calls from potential clients asking why their metrics are so bad such as bounce rates, page views and time on site.

Think about this for a second: you’re spending millions of dollars to get people to come to your site yet when they raise their hand and say “I want to know more” you’re letting them down”.

The other mistake too many pharma companies make is using a big, offline agency, to develop the online brand experience.  I’m sorry, but to this day I haven’t seen any digital site that was really great developed by a large, traditional ad agency.

Please, invest in your site and do it the RIGHT way.  You only have one chance to make a great first impression. 

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