Biopharma marketers need to focus on retention

retentionEarlier this week I got an email from a colleague who I consider one of the best marketers I have ever worked with telling me that she was going to “take a package” and leave pharma marketing.  I wish I could say that this doesn’t happen often, but it’s happening way too much and in my opinion the industry can’t continue to lose talent like this and replace them with people who have MBA’s and are afraid to push the envelope within our regulated environment.

A recent research report by the The Fournaise Marketing Group indicated that 75% of marketing strategies & ad campaigns under-performed last year and failed to deliver positive business results.  In 70% of the cases Fournaise performance-tracked that the ads deployed (regardless of the media: traditional, digital, mobile) creatively failed to build a high enough level of audience engagement to generate solid incremental customer demand for the products/services advertised because marketers’ & agencies’ over-reliance on “creativity”.

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In 67% of the cases Fournaise performance-tracked that marketers were swamped with a mountain of big data and reports, but kept on asking for more from all types of research, analytics and automation providers.

Now what has all this meant for biopharma?  It means that DTC and HCP marketers are often tied down by analysis-paralysis and matrix decision making that frustrates them to the point that they know their marketing could be better if they were allowed to do the right thing.

I have seen firsthand arrogant biopharma marketers who rely too much on research and who are hog tied by ultra conservative M L R teams.  I have also seen people in DTC marketing who are clueless when it comes to even the most basic digital marketing principles.

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So let’s pretend nothing is wrong and keep on attending DTC conferences, so we can pat each other on the back while consumers of healthcare ignore drug marketers and the industry bleeds talent.