DTC messages need to evolve

SUMMARY: With patients staying away from their doctors because of COVID, DTC messages need to add incentives and better messaging to get people to take action rather than wait. No one message will do this, however. Messages need to evolve in these special times.

My doctor’s office recently sent me an email that they had plenty of telehealth appointments available for patients who didn’t want to come to the office. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that none of these telehealth consultations is about switching to or asking for a new medication.

During the pandemic, DTC commercials have pretty much remained the same as having product websites. Sure your product may lower A1C, but is that alone enough to get someone to schedule a telehealth visit with their doctor?

DTC needs to reach out to audiences to motivate them to ask for a product. That pretty much is not happening today. I’m also a huge believer in messages evolving as the drug moves through the product life-cycle. For example, advertising a drug that compromises the immune system may cause alarm with COVID running rampent.

There should be information or links on how to ask for the product during a telehealth visit on product websites. There should also be examples of a telehealth visit since some people may not think it’s a good way to ask for a new drug.

Oh, by the way….you’re wasting a LOT of money on Internet ads

Automated traffic takes up 64% of internet traffic – and whilst just 25% of automated traffic was made up by good bots, such as search engine crawlers and social network bots, 39% of all traffic was from bad bots, a Barracuda report reveals. North America accounts for 67% of bad bot traffic, followed by Europe (22%) and Asia (7.5%).

Researchers also observed that bad bot traffic tends to follow the standard workday, allowing them to hide within normal human traffic streams to avoid raising alarm bells. Your IT department should be working to detect and effectively block bot traffic.

DTC has essentially stayed the same for the last ten years, although a few pharma companies are experimenting with different channels. It’s time for DTC to evolve and get new thinking about the best way to reach patients.