Tag: healthcare marketing

Day Job and Gay Job???

Here is another one of those interesting issues that I frankly have never thought much about. That is, how well or poorly does the biopharma industry deal with LGBTQ+ issues in comparison to other environments. 

Check this out. What you will see is a fascinating series of observations and recommendations on this topic. Overall, this piece notes, less than 50% of LGBTQ+ employees are “out” at their place of work. BUT. For our industry, the good news is that our companies are heavy in PhDs, MDs and other educated professionals, who tend to be more accepting of alternative lifestyles. AND. Our companies also tend to be located in or near big cities, with urbanites being more accepting of differences in sexual orientation than rurals.

Arguably, the bad news is that most biopharma companies do not have special programs or initiatives to reach out to LGBTQ+ consumers, although companies like GSK are beginning to move in this direction.

An important point is made in this article with the observation that not all of the letters in the LGBTQ+ acronym have the same issues. Transgender employees who transition while on the job, it is noted, require that other employees also transition. Translated, if the boss that used to use the men’s room suddenly transitions to using the ladies’ room, some eyebrows will likely furrow and tongues wag. 

Bottom Line. At the end of the day, the executives interviewed for this article were largely unanimous in recommending that members of the LGBTQ+ community speak their “own truth” in the workplace setting. Backing down on issues related to sexual orientation is likely to be deleterious to both the employee and to the gay community at large.

Moreover, HIV/AIDS is not the only market where members of the LGBTQ+ community constitute a significant, and significantly different, market segment. Product managers need to decide if their product offers special benefits to this community, and target and tailor their promotional messages accordingly.

All interesting issues. How does your company rate? What should it be doing differently as we move into 2022???


Micro-moments in healthcare marketing   Picture what happens when Google, McKinsey and Wharton team up to bring you an update on healthcare marketing in the digital age. And then publish the results in an ebook that they offer at the price of $0. Curious? Check it out! (It’s a slow load, but worth waiting for). What you see in this “3D” approach is the imperative that, as an industry, we must Discover what patients are really looking for from us in the digital space, we must Design programs that meet these needs and then we must Deliver them. Consistently! Take the time to read the copy and watch the embedded videos. A ton of valuable insights. For example, read the discussion about Micro-Moments. Great concept. It refers to those fleeting points in time where patients are actually willing to learn, to act, etc. The beauty of the digital media, this report explains, is the ability to be there at just these right moments with just the right message. Bottom Line. As one would expect from the three organizations that put this puppy together, it contains a lot of good direction in terms of what we need to make happen. Finding the organizations/people that have the abilities necessary to actually make it happen seems, based on what I am observing in the marketplace, to be a little bit more challenging. I’m thinking Wharton is not the place where such abilities reside. Excellence in implementation is seldom found in academia. McKinsey can tell you a slick story about what needs to be done, but I seldom see big consulting firms actually doing the heavy lifting. Google? Excellence in a lot of areas, but I’m not sure that they are going to be willing to spend the time and effort on customized patient programs. Unlike Google Search algo’s, such programs can only be sold once. Well then. Who delivers on the excellent vision set forth in this ebook? How about you?

The Pitfalls of Social Media

Has it occurred to anybody how many on Social Media are spewing out stuff related to Healthcare Marketing? On Linked In alone, someone involved in our area of endeavor could spend all day, every day, just trying to keep up with the postings. The more of these offerings that I read, however, the more I am concerned that none of them is peer reviewed or in any other way required to be “right,” let alone “meaningful.” As a result, many are just plain vapid, while others provide guidance which should best be considered to be “dangerous.” One Linked In connection in recent weeks, for example, led to an article that exhorted the reader to stop believing that doctors are rational decision makers when it comes to prescribing. Emotions, this article offered, are integrally involved in the prescribing process, and we as pharmaceutical marketers spend far too little time trying to understand them. The fact that even slightly inferior products have some market share, the article opined, is a clear indication that emotionality is at work. What??? Listen to 10 depth interviews with Primary Care Physicians, and you will find that they are constantly involved in an intricate, highly rational dance that balances out a drug’s benefits and its cost to strike a compromise that a patient can live with and that doesn’t require the physician to spend 45 minutes trying to “pre-cert” a drug not preferred on the patient’s insurance formulary. Doctors tell us they are trying to prescribe as much as possible from Walmart’s list of $4.00-per-month drugs, helping their patients to avoid having to choose between medicating and eating. Make no mistake about it. The movement toward the “new” healthcare marketing is about taking emotional noise out of the treatment system, and replacing it with rationality and cost-effectiveness. Social Media that blither on to the contrary should be politely ignored, as should much of the prattle generated by myriad people who clearly have nothing better to do.

Physician Decision Making Styles

In the previous blog post, we discussed differences in physician prescribing profiles, and the importance of not making the faulty assumption that all physicians prescribe using the same strategy and tactics. At an even more fundamental/psychological level, decades of work with thousands of physicians has led to the conclusion that another “faulty assumption” that can be made, and can be disastrous, is that underlying all doctors’ prescribing behavior is the same decision making style/intellectual involvement in the practice of medicine.  

Rather, we have found that there are three, fundamentally different decision styles that doctors use in their practices.

The first segment of physicians, which we refer to as Scientists,

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Faulty Assumptions

Whether we know it or not, and admittedly we are not usually highly conscious of it, all of the work that we do as healthcare marketers and marketing researchers is based on assumptions as to how things work. The problem is that, by definition, any faulty assumptions that underlie our work will make everything built on these assumptions faulty as well. This is a blog, not an encylopedia, so I can’t even begin to list all of the faulty assumptions that I have encountered, and admittedly made myself, in 40 years in this business. But I’ll give you some of the big ones.

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