Pharma and Social Media – A New Friendship???

When you think about pharma companies, social media isn’t something you would associate with them. But why not with a world becoming more digital it must be a case for pharma companies not be left behind.

Many pharma companies will find social media an uphill struggle in many different ways. With the industry full of regulatory concerns and many tending to take a cautious approach and remain on the sidelines and hope for the best. Social media has become ever present and will continue to feature in marketing campaigns and with the FDA providing guidelines, it is becoming a matter that the pharma industry can’t ignore.

In the past the uncertainty around regulatory restrictions that surrounds social media, has led to many pharma brands being scared off. However with the FDA approved guidelines, the excuse of uncertainty is a thing of the past and social media is something that should be embraced.

I’m going to share with you a few points on how social media can help;

Customer

All your customers will be using social media at some point of their day, to say that your customers aren’t using social networks would be a huge mistake. Although your customers may not be situated on one specific network. 74% of adults are using some kind of social network, this doesn’t restrict to the main networks such as Facebook and Twitter, many people will be part of blog communities and forums. Social media is a great way to connect with your customer and actually see how well your brand is performing in the real world, it allows you to gain some qualitative data rather quantitative.

Seo or SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMISATION

SEO is what makes Google ticks and what ranks your web page on Google, so making sure your SEO is in good health is very important if you want to be found on Google. Google are constantly changing how they rank websites, they do this due to people finding out hacks to exploit how there website ranks. More recently it has been link building but many people have been to use spam techniques to get their website link posted in lots of places which is bad however Google are now looking at popularity, so a brand with a good social media presence will be found more easily than a brand which doesn’t. This a major reason why you should be using social media as you could have spent thousands on a top spec website only for no one ever to see it.

COMPETITION

This is a bit of a weird one but have you ever thought about what your competition was up to, whether they were on the verge of releasing a new product or trial results or even if they were looking to hire for a specific position. Well a website can be very secretive but a twitter feed can be the first place to see breaking news and you will find that most of your competitors will have one.  I know this works both ways but social media is a great way to keep tabs on what others are doing.

Communication

Communication is vital and social media makes it easier than ever to communicate with customers and potential new clients as well as discuss ideas. Social media has given every brand a platform to go out and express themselves, so people can become personable with the brand as well. Features such as Google+ hangouts give the chance for thought leaders to discuss new ideas or even a way to have a focus group with people across the world. If you have news you want to spread quickly a tweet can reach millions of people in seconds. The people and brands that succeed at social media are the ones that use imagination and think outside the box on how they can develop interaction.

Social media is probably the best way to control the perception of your brand. Allowing your social media presence to stay stagnant and without interaction is very dangerous. Given the pressures of today’s markets, where it is critical to control your brand as well as understand what impact and influence your brand is having. By not having any interaction could be very detrimental to your brand.

So I envisage in the future that your traditional marketing department will be made up of specialists in specific areas to help accommodate the changing ways of society. A social media executive might be seen as a necessity rather than a luxury investment, with these people helping your brand increase awareness.

Alex Carson

PiR Resourcing leaders in senior life science resourcing. For more news and information, you can follow us on Twitter and LinkedInFor all our latest roles in the Life Science sector please click here.

 

 

 

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