Pharma websites still missing the target

KEY TAKEAWAY: Pharma product websites, according to the latest qualitative research, are still not providing people with the information that drives them into their doctor’s office to ask for a prescription.

The last two weeks I have been actively engaged conducting some qualitative research for a new client.   With focus groups in four cities I hoped to learn when people might go to a pharma website after being exposed to a DTC commercial and if, once they got there, the information was enough to convince them to ask their doctor for/about the product.  What I heard was not encouraging.

Top Line Findings:

1ne: When the target audience is exposed to a DTC TV spot they do not immediately go to the product website even though many are multitasking on mobile devices.

2wo: [inlinetweet prefix=”” tweeter=”” suffix=””]People are having trouble spelling and pronouncing names of new branded drugs.  [/inlinetweet]As a result, they start their search on Google where they are often hijacked by a competitor who has spent more on keywords.  In other words, you’re losing traffic because of your brand name/URL.

3hree:[inlinetweet prefix=”” tweeter=”” suffix=””] Pharma websites do not offer content they need to convince them that a new branded drug could “solve their problems”. [/inlinetweet] In addition, many find the content dry and stale.

4our: WebMD has become a secondary resource for information on prescription drugs. [inlinetweet prefix=”” tweeter=”” suffix=””]Many people are turning to social media to see what others have to say about available treatments but they fact check claims.[/inlinetweet]

5ive: P[inlinetweet prefix=”” tweeter=”” suffix=””]eople want to listen to conversation with patients who have the same issues they do, but they are worried about privacy issues and behavioral targeting.[/inlinetweet]

6ix: Trust in pharma website information is better when it comes to disease state information, but when the content promotes the product with product claims credibility of content often suffers.

7even: [inlinetweet prefix=”” tweeter=”” suffix=””]The home page of many pharma websites “scares” people away with clutter, with most people saying the pages are “too medical”.[/inlinetweet]

Finally, content is just too hard to read.  One woman said that she was a college graduate, but still found the content difficult to understand.