A study of 852 patients released by Accenture's Life Sciences finds that, although 68 percent report turning to the Internet for health information, only 11 percent of them seek out pharma-sponsored drug and disease websites. Consumers are much more likely to consult social media sites, online communities, and news or government sites.
Clearly, pharma is largely missing the opportunity to connect with its online audience. Accenture recommends that pharma companies upgrade their websites to create a more dynamic, interactive experience and establish a two-way dialogue with their online audience. But as Pharmalot notes, drugmakers are hesitant to fully engage online due fears of violating FDA guidelines, which require drugmakers to present both risks and benefits of their drugs.
"While pharmaceutical companies are methodical in manufacturing their products, there is a clear disconnect in how they communicate with their patients," noted Tom Schwenger, global managing director for Accenture's Life Sciences Sales & Marketing practice. "Companies need to reevaluate their marketing campaigns to ensure they are integrated across all patient touch-points and channels to meet customer demand for health solutions, increase trust and brand loyalty and enhance customer perceptions."
- here's the Accenture release
- read the post from Pharmalot