Insights for pharma/health brand marketers: e-Patient Connections Conference

Picture 3

Thought I’d recap the highlights (at least mine) from the 10/26-27 e-Patient Connections 2009 Conference.

While all speakers provided new insights and perspectives, I’m summarizing (paraphrasing) the highlights from the speakers and presentations that particularly resonated with me:

Jason Hwang, MD (Innosight Institute, co-author Innovators Prescription); The Innovators Prescription
– we suffer from malpractice, but a different type, i.e. “business model”
– must understand difference between sustaining innovation (performance improvements, historical value dimensions) and disruptive innovation (that lets companies appeal to new rings of customers)
– enabled by technology, we have an opportunity to disrupt/move healthcare out to non-experts to let them do things themselves, e.g. facilitated user networks (like Facebook), a currently underutilized model to serve chronic care patients

Thomas Goetz, Executive Editor, Wired Magazine; Decision Tree: Smarter Patients, Better Choices
– proposes a new strategy for thinking about health, applying cutting-edge technology and sound science to put us at the center of the equation
– today, unfortunately, most healthcare information comes to us in cascades of do’s and dont’s

Dr. Jay Berhnardt, CDC; Social Media & The H1N1 Flu Pandemic

– H1N1 as example of why CDC’s engaged in social media as part of their strategy
– Customer Centered Communication Strategy: how, when, where people want and need to inform about health and safe decisions, i.e.
• information that is accessible and relevant
• mix of high repetition with deep engagement
• combination of high-tech and high-touch
• traditional/vertical media (though harder to have impact given lack of trust) combined with social media (horizontal and spreadable; higher level of trust)

– some interesting stats across CDC social media channels:
• approaching almost 500 million web site page views since H1N1 outbreak
• 5.07 million H1N1 flu-related emails sent, once consumers opt-in
• 19 videos posted on Youtube; 2.33 million views since 4/22
• 25, 322 Facebook fans since CDC page launched 5/1; value is in comments from people
• 917,579 views of CDC H1N1-related podcasts since 4/22
• 928, 412 followers on 3 CDC Twitter profiles
• CDC Health-e-cards (15,433 since 4/22)
• just launched mobile-based text messaging (1,155 opt-in subscribers since 9/14); subscribers receive about 3 messages/week

Susannah Fox, Pew Internet & American Life Project; The Social Life of Health Information
– people just diagnosed are looking for just-in-time “someone like me”
– patient networks can be powerful, early warning system
– marketers should think of e-patients as colleagues, not as people being marketing to (if you’re ready to listen to them)

Mark Bard, Manhattan Research; The Rapid Growth of Health Consumerism
– pharma info seekers have increased from 45 million in ’04 to 100 million in ’09
– majority of e-health consumers now use the internet to confirm/learn after seeing doctor
– health 2.0 can’t happen on web 1.0 websites; need to be able to evaluate, exchange, connect, create community, participate
– mobility is huge trend, certainly on physician side
– key questions to consider: how balance content with community; is it more about initiating a conversation, or a lecture
it’s not a community unless you’re having a conversation; much of pharma is still one-way

Lee Aase, Mayo Clinic Manager of Syndication and Social Media; Marketing The Mayo Clinic
– consider social media “power tools” for doing what we were already doing as organization

– found that patients are “honored” if you ask them to share their stories
– great example of exponentially growing views of YouTube video by using multiple channels (Mayo Clinic Atrium Piano video)
– one of the keys to success is all about repurposing content

Robert Halper, J&J Director Video Communication; J&J on YouTube
– company is on YouTube because:
• reputation: caring, socially responsible, trusted source for health care information
• engagement: comments, listening, responding
• community: linking to other sites, including non-branded operating companies; subscribing to other related channels, videos embedded in external sites
– not easy getting started: cultural (control of message), legal & regulatory (environment, adverse events, medical advice, fair balance, comment mediation), business (ROI, resources, staff, commitment)
more risk not being part of the conversation; funny when CEO’s talk about not putting brand out on social media, when they’re already out there

Dave DeBronkart, e-Patient Dave; Cofounder Society for Participatory Medicine; Special Presentation
– very moving talk about his “free replay” after beating his cancer
– his treatment [cure] options were based, in part, on his incredible outreach, research, open sharing of his health records
– now evangelist for “participatory medicine”; first edition of Journal of Participatory Medicine (his new publication) forthcoming
– accessed tremendous amount of information on (which didn’t exist anywhere else)
– key message is authenticity; don’t pretend, impersonate; be real, contribute value
– best information is a smart patient community; and patients love to give back

Brian O’Donnell, Klick Pharma, Top 1o Trends
10.  social media is becoming more mainstream (about the power of one, not so much followers)
9. pervasive use of technology in solving marketing challenges (can be a multiplier)
8. From wait and see to try and learn (try pilot programs)
7. patients and HCP’s online usage is increasing (balance of marketing mix)
6. data and intelligence becoming underpinning of marketing programs (make data planning part of your kickoff)
5. shift to multidisciplinary solution teams (make effort to reach out early)
4. branded mobile apps are becoming next CRM (think beyond the keyboard)
3. technology can make reps more powerful (integration is key)
2. value add beyond the pill (solutions, not just products; broadly supporting patients)
1. regulatory bodies embracing 21st century, e.g. FDA

Kerri Sparling, author, Patient Opinion Leaders
– diabetes has been part of her life since age 6; but wouldn’t exactly call it her buddy

– she started sixuntilme in May, 2005; felt like she was only diabetes patient on the planet
– now more than 350 sites dedicated to diabetes lifestyle and management
POL’s (patient opinion leaders) don’t blog because they have to, but because it helps us heal
– finding emotional support online is everything
– don’t consider patients a “target market”, but a consumer base being marketed to
– until there’s a cure, there will be a blog

Tricia Geoghegan, Johnson & Johnson/Ortho-McNeil-Janssen; Facebook ADHD Allies
– what social media isn’t: the shiny new object
– what it is: consumer democracy, sharing/not selling, creating foundation for new kinds of relationships, reinforcing commitment to disease awareness
– people trust other people, e.g. Mom-bassadors™
– metrics will answer questions, the best ones will compel more questions
– users will tell you what’s relevant
– what’s unmet need for patients, what’s business case and risk/benefit analysis, how define ROI

Lisa Tate (CEO Womenheart) and Robert Schumm (Marketing Director Bayer Healthcare); Facebook Strong@Heart
– cardiovascular disease is #1 cause of death for women
– was each organization’s first foray into social media
– why social: target was online, patients wanting to speak about/share their own experiences
– c
ombination of traditional (eyeballs) and online (conversations) drove success (key theme reinforced by other speakers)

Dennis Urbaniak, VP Innovation & New Customer Channels Sanofi-Aventis; From Patients To People: What it Takes for  True Shift to a Customer-Centric Approach
– must challenge current mindset within organization; new ideas built on top of old models are doomed to failure
– stop thinking patient and start thinking people; most have their own values, belief systems, etc.; must understand their perspectives
– preference and choice doesn’t fit with one-way approach (typical pharma model; e.g. Model T)
– challenge mindset of patient vs. person
– how to move ahead: change approach
– choice (need to get perfectly comfortable with content, dialogue, listening opportunities)
– what’s the job: what are the hiring criteria and who are the candidates (framework for presenting sustaining and disruptive innovations); start to identify gaps and then pinpoint opportunities; actionable insights from customer pov (vs. brand and product pov)
need to get extremely comfortable living in glass house if you’re change agent inside company
– create the example (very powerful means to drive real change): step back and honestly answer each point:
• project description (elevator speech; not powerpoint deck)
• project objective (what’s the job to be done)
• project metrics (must be prospective; here’s how assess progress, learn and adjust)
• project status (build in points of adjustment as you go)
– sets dynamic that rewards failure; everyone was aligned
– Net:
• change the mindset, change the approach, create the example

Joe Shields, Pfizer: New Ideas For Patient Adherence
– e=empowerment
– process for developing programs:
• what’s your pov?
– Patient (me), Health care provider, Payer, Pharma
• what’s your process?
1. Gain insights (strategic advantage from this work; doc/patient interaction; motivations/barriers)
2. Set objectives
3. Audit current stuff
4. Align current stuff with 1 & 2
5. Identify gaps
6. Fill gaps
7. Measure programs
8. Improve and keep testing
– what does good look like? from different perspectives, as everyone has different agenda/incentives
– make up of strong adherence program:
1. Insightful (patient and doc; does it really solve a problem)
2. Systematic (things that talk to everyone else, things accountable to whole system)
3. Multi-channel
4. Scalable (how easy is it to get work done, get out to most people, return on hassle – is it worth it if you can’t scale it)
5. Social (with regard to adherence, it’s a team sport; some accountability beyond patient itself; service of better patient outcomes)

Marc Monseau, Director, Corporate Media Relations J&J: Connecting J&J To Twittersphere To Tweet or Not To Tweet
– How this came together; what he/J&J hoped to achieve, how it fits together
– Steps:
• Create business case
• Connect with other initiatives
• Establish a personality
• Set guides
• Gain legal/regulatory support
– What kind of Twitter account do you want to be?
• customer service
• expert source
• news gatherer
• suggestion box
• special offers
– establish a personality
– have to be yourself
– not just recitation of PR’s
– Multiple platforms (tie Twitter back to all else company is doing); so nothing is one-off
– setting controls:
• took social media biz plan to lawyers/regulatory  (one of the do’s/don’t’s)
• have to work with attorney’s to gain understanding
• how to manage adverse events/offlabel uses?
– Concept of “content guardrails” (gave credit to his associate for this concept):
• within predefined scope: self-management
• outside predefined scope: legal, regulatory, management
• both = publication for tweets