Last week, I saw a Twitter comment to which I couldn’t help responding. Essentially, it was a blanket statement about the difficulty of adopting social media in pharma.
Beside the fact that I used the word “actually” twice (I hate messing up grammar and making typos!), this exchange underscored something I know I have been guilty of – over-generalizing about pharma and social media. Since Twitter only allows 140 characters per message, I followed up with this:
The fact is, we often think about pharma only in terms of the restrictions and challenges of prescription brand marketing. There are many, many other areas of networked communications which pharmaceutical companies can and should use apart from any guidance from the FDA about brand communications. Please read Jon Richman‘s very helpful post about this issue.
Think of it this way: Networking approaches can be transformative and effective in multiple areas that have little or nothing to do with branded messaging. Those non- or less-regulated areas are the low-hanging fruit. Spinning our wheels always obsessing about the fruit at the top of the tree causes us to lose sight of the many ways we can use social media now.
The slide below is a bit dated – I think it’s a couple years old now – but it’s a tool to help brainstorm the many areas in which we can productively start using social networking technologies in pharma now (click to biggify).
Pharma and social media: it’s not all about the brand and the prescriptions, people. There’s a lot of other low-hanging fruit out there with opportunities to inform, collaborate, communicate, and learn.
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