Pharma lagging in digital…

imagesPOST SUMMARY:  According to McKinsey&Company “unlike successful B2C companies in other industries— which offer mobile solutions, provide personalized product recommendations, and empower customer-service agents with a 360-degree view of the customer—most healthcare providers and payors are lagging, as are pharmaceutical companies and medical-device manufacturers.”  How much monger does pharma need to get the wake-up call?

Patient behavior is changing and consumers in the healthcare sector are becoming more informed, empowered, and demanding. More than 70 percent of patients who are online in the United States use the Internet to find healthcare information, and more than 40 percent of people who diagnosed their condition through online research had it confirmed by a physician.  The more that healthcare data becomes digitally accessible, the more patients will use it to weigh—and potentially reject—expensive healthcare treatments. This is particularly true in the United States, where patients pay a greater percentage of the cost of their drug therapies (25 percent is not unusual) than they do for other healthcare expenses such as inpatient services.


So while McKinsey is quick to point out the challenges what are the solutions?

1ne: Pharma digital organizations have to be strengthened. It is no longer acceptable for one person or even two to be responsible for all digital initiatives, metrics and analytics.

2wo: The “tone” within pharma digital marketing has to be more authentic and genuine.  Content that is generic and label language needs to be thrown in the trash.

3hree: Pharma digital marketers need to do a better job of listening to patients/caregivers/consumers via social media and respond to their concerns before it becomes a key factor in healthcare treatment decisions.


4our: Digital marketers need to ensure that key influencers within the organization understand both the importance of digital marketing and what devices are being used and why to get health information.

5ive: We need an in depth understanding of patient insights and need to consistently update decision trees and recommend how digital marketing can succeed in bringing more people into the healthcare transaction model.

6ix: Web metrics have to go beyond the numbers and tell a story to non-digital savvy people within the company.

7even: Digital marketers need to eliminate the hype from the reality around new digital marketing channels such as apps.

8ight: Pharma marketers should not over rely on the expertise of agency people who can come and go.

9ine: They are not patients; they are customers and you had better treat them as such.


10en:Focus on building on successes but expect to fail in some of your other digital marketing which is fine provided you learn from it.