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What's in the Article

  • Study Uncovers Bayer is Best Performing at Social
  • Learn from Bayer’s Social Media Strategy
  • 4 Tips to Take Away from Bayer’s Social Strategy
  • The New Era of Social Media Marketing
  • 4 More Tips to Improve User Journey on Social Media
  • How to Stay on Top of Changes to Adjust Your Strategy

Looking for some inspiration for your pharmaceutical social media marketing strategy? Bayer has some lessons brands can adapt to maximize the ideal user journey for both the patient and HCP.

Bayer Scores on Social

Bayer is a massive pharmaceutical enterprise in the fields of health care, agriculture and high-tech polymer materials. Interestingly, they’re also one of the best pharma brands on social media. Bayer has a strong online presence backed by a solid digital marketing strategy. Let’s take a look at how they successfully utilize numerous social channels in order to grow their brand. 

Study Uncovers Bayer is Best Performing at Social

Pharmaceutical companies have been pushing the boundaries of research, development and medical science for over a century. They are amongst the most innovative companies in the world. But, in this digital age, does their digital presence demonstrate the same innovative thinking? Worldcom Healthcare decided to find out.

A major 2019 study conducted by Worldcom Public Relations, “Bayer Tops Worldcom’s Digital Health Monitor For The Pharma Sector”, ranked 25 companies in terms of their presence on social media, including the use of apps, blogs Facebook, Flickr, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Tumblr, Twitter, and YouTube. 

The ranking was based on each company’s presence on, or use of, 12 different social media platforms. Criteria included:

  • Use of integrated apps
  • Likes/followers/subscribers
  • Updates/week
  • Blog updates
  • Country specific pages

As it turns out, Bayer ranked at the top for “best-performing” firm and took the crown for both Facebook and Twitter. Pfizer, Boehringer Ingelheim, Novartis and AstraZeneca followed behind. 

Always Room to Grow

While most pharma brands are active on top social media channels, like Facebook and Twitter, many still leave Instagram on the table. As the second most logged in social media site for daily use after Facebook and over 909 million users, it’s clear these brands are missing out on a ton of opportunities by not using Instagram.

It makes sense why pharmaceutical companies would leave Instagram on the table. Anyone in the know is aware of the stress-inducing amount of potential policy minefields there are, not to mention the frustrating policies that limit what you can and cannot post. That being said, there are ways to navigate this so that you aren’t missing out on the platform completely.

Since the aforementioned report’s release in 2019, many big pharma brands have picked up the pace on social media. That being said, video, specifically through YouTube, is another platform that is still highly underutilized. According to the study: 

“Video material has become much more important than it was just two years ago,” Serge Beckers, chairman of Worldcom’s Healthcare practice group, said. “My advice would be to take some of the focus off Facebook or LinkedIn and put it on YouTube. Because as a search engine, YouTube is becoming increasingly important—it’s right up there with Google. If you want to be found as a pharmaceutical, you should be on YouTube.”

This quote remains to be true. Since it was written in 2019, YouTube has grown from 1.68 billion users to over 2 billion users worldwide.

Learn More About The New Era of Social Media Marketing

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Learn from Bayer’s Social Media Strategy

So how do you get started?  What Bayer is doing right now on Instagram, YouTube and their other social media profiles provides a perfect inspiration for other brands to learn and take inspiration from. They even have an entire webpage dedicated to their social media channels. 

Let’s take a look:

Bayer’s Instagram features plenty of user generated content and visually captivating educational posts, with hardly a product shot in sight.  Its Facebook page speaks directly to their audience through community involvement highlights, testimonials and USG (different from what you’d find on Instagram). Additionally, the company puts out some great content on their YouTube channel featuring a series on “Kid Talk,” “Working at Bayer,” Values” and much more.

For a company like this, setting up a Pinterest account may have seemed tricky, as Pinterest is naturally best suited for beauty or DIY companies. But that didn’t stop Bayer! The company managed to come up with a creative plan and execute it, making them the first big pharma company to join the creative photo-sharing platform. Bayer’s boards include: History, Science, Sustainability and more.

Pinterest is a place to show off your innovative side. Many successful brands on Pinterest are typically based around the home, food, or apparel industries. But, brands who fall into different categories (yes, even “Big Pharma”) can still utilize Pinterest as a successful marketing tool.

It just requires a little out-of-the-box thinking. 

So what exactly did Bayer do right? 

Simple: the company shares engaging content on a consistent basis that is clearly speaking to their patient and HCP personas. Not only do they post status updates, Bayer also regularly links to their blog that includes topics on Science at Home, Better Health, and Science and Innovation. In short, they aren’t just appealing to the end consumer, they’re focused on building a memorable brand for the long term. This is something that most pharma brands are missing in their social strategy. 

4 Tips to Take Away from Bayer’s Social Strategy

It’s clear that Bayer has a deep understanding of their target audience. They’re also great at creating the right content that connects with that audience. So, how can you apply these principles to your own social media marketing strategy?

  • Identify. First of all, figure out your own brand voice and stick to it. This personality should be applied everywhere your brand “speaks,” including social media, newsletters, advertising and official communications like press releases.
  • Build Personas. Bayer knows their audience because they spend time thinking about what personas are active on which platforms — and what types of content will attract those specific personas
  • Connect. It’s extremely important to interact with your audience on an emotional level by sharing stories that engage with others. Give your audience the valuable content that solves their problems.
  • Strategize. Finally, understand that the relationship between consumers and social media can be a valuable tool when strategizing a brand’s social media marketing plan. How? Data. Loads of data.

Learn More About The New Era of Social Media Marketing

Get in touch to advance your pharmaceutical marketing today.

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The New Era of Social Media Marketing

Over the last several months, we’ve witnessed many changes in the marketing sector due to the coronavirus. However, users are still longing for ways to connect and an active audience is waiting for brand movement, even in the pharma industry.

Individuals, including older generations, are adjusting to and embracing the new digital lifestyle. They’re not just looking for content on Google, they rely on social platforms to do their research, shop and communicate. 

For pharma brands, this increased demand means that social content must be created to connect with a broader audience. In addition to expanding content, brands also need to make authentic connections and interact with consumers. They’re longing for more ways to feel a connection. Long gone are the one-sided conversations. Consumers expect engagement through valuable content, such as testimonials, how-to videos, behind the scenes clips, etc. While conversations are the ultimate goal, brands must keep social listening and engagement as the primary focus. Your customers are unique, so it’s up to you to figure out exactly how they engage with you, why they engage with you, and where those conversations best take place. 

4 Simple Tips to Improve User Journey on Social Media

Here are a few simple tips that pharma companies can take to maximize the ideal user journey for both the patient and HCP on social media efforts:

  1. Develop Patient and HCP Personas. Review the usage of digital channels that are most used by target audiences. What is the end goal per persona? The better you understand your audience, the more you’ll be able to focus content and reach those who are most likely to convert into customers. Global brands must be present and active on social media at both a global and local level.

Read: Developing a Winning Pharma Marketing Strategy

  1. Build a Brand Strategy. Research and compare your digital ‘footprint’ to that of competitors. This data will help solidify a brand strategy and help to prevent missed opportunities for sharing permitted information across all available channels and email.
  2. Develop a Conversion Architecture. Interact and connect with niche markets through the appropriate local digital channels to drive them to the right web page or blog. This strategic connection is extremely important to help to demonstrate that brands genuinely care about each market and develop that must-have trusting relationship.

Read: Pharma Content Marketing: Why It’s Important

  1. Optimize for search. Utilize data from online analysis to identify topics and keywords for publishing content. This proactive approach, along with a customized landing page optimized for search, is essential for SEO and to provide the information consumers need. 

Read: The Often Overlooked Role of Unbranded Content in Pharma >>

Read: 10 Elements of the Best Landing Pages >>

Learn More About The New Era of Social Media Marketing

Get in touch to advance your pharmaceutical marketing today.

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Stay on Top of Changes to Adjust Your Strategy

Whether it’s healthcare, pharmaceutical, or any other industry, if you want to master social media marketing for your brand, you must consider that nothing stays the same for very long. You need to stay on top of changes and keep an eye on your data and engagement numbers so that you can adjust your strategy. 

At CMDS, we are a full-service creative marketing agency who delivers a diverse suite of branding strategies, marketing capabilities and an in-depth data-driven approach for the pharmaceutical industry. We’ve worked with healthcare brands such as Genentech, LifebankUSA, ONCO, Afaxys Pharma, eMedical, Hackensack Meridian Health, Biotech Support Group and many more.

Call us today at (732) 706-5555 to find out how our in-house team can advance your pharmaceutical marketing.