Continuing our blog series discussing where we expect pharma marketers to be with their digital marketing strategies in 2014, we continue this week with content curation. With content marketing the new buzz term in the digital marketing lexicon, it is time for pharma to start thinking more seriously about republishing third-party content alongside their own content.
Content curation admittedly is old hat, but it is still not being implemented within pharma. Currently pharma brand managers see content curation as a waste of time as it is not their content with their messages, and can third-party content every push their own messages and agenda?
This needs to change and it will change. Pharma brand managers need to start thinking beyond legal headaches. Think value, think beyond your own messages and dare I say it, think engendering trust in your consumers.
Content curation could bring substantial benefits to the pharmaceutical industry. However, these benefits depend on pharmaceutical companies using content curation in the right way in order to maximise its potential.
It is time to take a look at a few best practice principles for content curation. These tips can help pharmaceutical companies to engage with consumers and healthcare professionals, increasing trust and ultimately leading to an upsurge in business.
1. Curate content from the experts
The key to content curation in the pharmaceutical industry is the use of reputable sources. Pharma marketers need to identify journals and expert voices in their field and use these as sources of curated content. Finding a good range of sources can take time.
2. Include a range of content
As well as reports on the latest medical studies, pharmaceutical companies should also consider including a range of multimedia content. Look for videos on YouTube giving advice to sufferers, the latest campaigns from charitable organisations set up to help sufferers of a particular condition, blog posts from knowledgeable commentators, and links to TV and radio features on relevant healthcare issues. Remember, the key is to sift through the huge range of content that is out there to find that which offers real value.
3. Cite sources properly
Curating content from a wide range of sources is part of a successful digital marketing strategy. However, all sources need to be given credit. Simply copying content without linking to the source can have a terrible effect on any company's reputation.
4. Stay fresh
The big advantage of using content creation is that it is easier to keep coming up with fresh postings every day, compared to creating new content from scratch. Freshness is key in any digital marketing strategy. Ideally, new stories should be posted every day to keep readers engaged and interested.
5. Use relevant social media outlets
Social media platforms are invaluable for pharmaceutical companies who are looking to connect with their customers. As well as posting to the company's own Facebook and LinkedIn pages, it is often a good idea to also post new content on Twitter with relevant hashtags in order to reach a wider range of people.
6. Become authoritative to be trusted
Implementing content curation into pharma digital marketing practices enables pharma to be a trusted partner, an element that is sorely lacking in any pharma marketing initiative. By being the trusted partner for HCPs consumers will continually return to the knowledge resource on a particular topic or issue.
By following these tips, pharmaceutical companies can recharge their digital marketing strategy in order to give it a new lease of life. Remember, the key is to regularly offer fresh, relevant content that gives real value to the customers and healthcare professionals that are reading it.
Ash Rishi is the CEO of COUCH., a digital marketing and creative communications agency based in London. Ash has over 9 years experience working on pharma marketing activities across UK, Europe, US and Latin America. His area of expertise include, branding, communications, stakeholder development and digital marketing. Ash is also the founder of a pharmaceutical marketing community on Google+. You can reach Ash at Ash@wearecouch.com.