The marketing activities of a pharma company in India include product selection, prescription generation(campaigns after campaigns of strategy, implementation, fine-tuning), distribution, reputation Management with a feedback system, last, but not least, implementation of all the above through quality recruitment and training.
With the advent of other lucrative jobs(like IT), over the last decade, quality of field representatives have suffered greatly. What was once a prestigious and lucrative job is no more attractive. The industry at the marketing end is plagued by so many problems. I am pained to see the struggle. Some of my old colleagues who are into senior management today say that they have problems in the quality of recruitment, imparting training and a huge attrition. They are worried not only about new recruits not performing well but also the damage they do to the reputation of the company with doctors and chemists which sets the clock back for them.
I have been participating in discussions on designing and fine tuning strategies that will deliver on all the above 5 parameters of marketing domestic formulations, I believe those who are at the helm now and in touch with the market daily are trying out various solutions and managing. My suggestions and interests lie in kick-starting Social Media Marketing with Pharma.
Social Media is a set of tools designed for online social interactions. Some of my generic thoughts about Social Media are shared here at http://blog.varadh.com/ (you can see category: social media for these posts) and shared through a white paper with some Pharma examples at http://www.slideshare.net/VaradhKrish/building-trust-on-your-brands-using-social-media-tools.
Pharma using Social Media tools for various engagement with stakeholders can be called as “Pharma and Social Media”. Lots of ideas are available to try in this area of “Pharma and Social Media”. I have been tracking this space for best practices. It is exciting for me as I am equipped with the unique background of Pharma(having been there, done that for a decade) and the expertise of Social Media. I believe there is definitely a pharma opportunity helping physicians connect better with patients through social media tools (within the limiting, restrictive regulations of pharma-patient interactions).
Though such marketing efforts can be done without interfering with traditional marketing efforts, a lot of coordinated efforts and feedback will create a lot of synergy. It requires a lot of commitment and support from a company’s management. It requires that the goals of the companies are aligned and a social media strategy drawn basis that. I am in discussion with some companies discussing their current scenario, pan-Indian presence, objectives, resources, willingness to try new models and the passion to go for it.
What do you think about “Pharma and Social Media” specific to India? Look forward to your comments.
Stay tuned here. I shall come back with more posts and case-studies for sharing with you. Feel free to buzz me to discuss specifics.