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Pharma 'could do better' on social media engagement

Industry is comfortable with the tech but has work to do on its approach
The Social Check-up

Pharmaceutical companies have embraced social media, but there's still room for development when it comes to creating and inspiring user engagement.

That is according to a new report that analyses social media activity by the top 20 pharma firms in the first half of 2016.

The Social Check-up, by Ogilvy Healthworld and Pulsar, tracked the performance of 57 social profiles split among Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram, charting the frequency, themes and interaction rates for each company.

In an average week the top firms posted on YouTube once, Instagram four times and Facebook seven times. But they were more active on Twitter, which had by far the highest number of posts with 26 tweets per week - almost four every day.

However, the report's findings show that a high quantity of posts does not necessarily translate into greater social media engagement.

Lilly shared the most social media content at just over 1,700 posts in the six months tracked, with Pfizer and GlaxoSmithKline coming in second and third respectively, but it was Boehringer Ingelheim who achieved the greatest engagement with users.

The German firm almost tripled Lilly's engagement score despite sharing under 1,000 posts, indicating a greater level of audience targeting.

Similarly Novo Nordisk ranked 15 out of 20 for quantity but achieved the second highest engagement score at just fewer than 200,000 interactions.

The report, which is in its third iteration, also revealed that while disease awareness content was the most frequently shared - accounting for 29% of all posts - it was among the least engaged with.

Company news had the highest interaction rate, followed by corporate social responsibility (CSR) and product and research updates, which made up only 8% of posts.

Overall the report suggests pharma needs a greater understanding of what interests its audience, and should implement a more strategic approach to inspire users to engage with online healthcare content.

Article by
Rebecca Clifford

24th October 2016

From: Marketing

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Oxford PharmaGenesis is an independently owned HealthScience communications consultancy, providing services to the healthcare industry, professional societies and patient groups....

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