DTC Awards should be decided by patients

IN SUMMARY: DTC awards should not be decided by industry people who have a vested interest in winners. They should be decided by patients who were motivated to “learn more” or ask their doctor for a prescription.

It’s that time of year again. Time for agencies and self-promotional DTC people to nominate and win awards that enhance resumes and business pitches. All over LinkedIn industry, people are saying how thrilled they are to be nominated but this is just the “business” of our industry.

First, let’s make clear that DTC award dinners are all part of the pharma magazine echo system. They hope that, by sponsoring these awards, more people will pay money to attend conferences or agencies will spend money on advertisements. It’s eally a sham and I have won two DTC awards which collect dust in my closet.

What we should be doing is king consumers “which DTC ads have led you to take action such as researching a health condition or asking your doctor about an RX?” Only our target audience can decide if a DTC ad was really effective.

One of my favorite DTC TV ads continues to be Rexulti. The women, in the advertisements, who use a smiling face card to hide behind I believe is effective. However, for every good ad, there are too many ads that are repetitive and boring. DTC marketers would instead use the money to buy media than develop new creative. Shame on agencies for not stressing this.

There is a reason why pharma DTC never wins awards outside of the industry. The closed loop system of agencies is too confined in their thinking. We need more experimentation within DTC marketing and more creative that spurs action.