It's all about the media this week 'round the old Pharma Blogosphere! At least on my narrow radar screen.
I started out with a post here about Web 2.0 Tricks for Pharma Marketers that I plan to reveal at THE Pharma Marketing Event on September 19 at the fabulous Park Hyatt at the Bellevue in Center City Philadelphia, PA (more info about that conference can be found here).
Peter Rost over at NRx graciously picked this up in his post "How to use the web to fool the FDA." I should note -- and I'm sure Peter is well aware of this -- that it is very easy to "fool" the FDA these days, especially when they are not even looking! Any hand can be quicker than the FDA's eyes! No magic there!
I also picked up from another of Rost's posts Novartis' attempt at a perfect execution of the YouTube "User-Generated" Video Trick (see "Novartis Attempts Perfect Execution of Web 2.0 Trick!"). Suffice it to say that this involves a contest. Both Rost and I, however, could not access the Official Rules (go ahead, click it and see what you get -- the dreaded "404" error).
I called Novartis and they were not aware of the contest..."Flu what-did-you-say?" They promised to investigate and get back to me, but I'm not holding my breath.
Meanwhile, in my post, I surmise that Novartis will purchase the copyright to winning videos and incorporate them into TV DTC ads for Fluvirin, its flu vaccine.
My friend Fard Johnmar over at HealthcareVOX says "You Can Run, But You Can't Hide" when it comes to performing tricks in the Web 2.0 WILD WILD WEST. He cited Abbott getting caught attempting the Wikipedia Sleight-of-Hand Edit Trick. However, if pharmaceutical marketers were to follow my directions, I am sure they can run AND hide! Come hear my presentation and learn how to flawlessly execute this trick is all I am saying.
Fard also was kind enough to send me a New Social Media Marketing Framework White Paper he co-authored with TNS Media Intelligence/Cymfony.
"Pharmaceutical companies are missing a tremendous learning and consumer engagement opportunity with social media because they are uncertain about the FDA's position on this type of marketing," said TNS Media Intelligence/Cymfony Chief Marketing Officer Jim Nail. "Our framework gives their marketing, legal and regulatory groups a common ground to design a social media strategy."Framewok, Shramework! Just reveal the secrets! That's what I promise to do in my presentation and soon-to-be-published "Compendium of Web 2.0 Tricks for the Pharmaceutical Marketer: Secrets of the Masters Revealed. Everything that You Can Get Away With and Nothing that You Can’t Get Away With!"
Let's not quibble about "one click" or "two clicks" as the "rule." There are NO rules except DON'T GET CAUGHT by being STUPID like Abbott!
OK, enough about New Media. What about Old Media?
Print DTC ads in magazines is something we don't write about often. It's just not very glamorous or as funny as TV DTC ads!
This week, however, I noticed a mysterious print DTC ad for GSK's Veramyst in Time Magazine (see "What's Up with the Veramyst 'Brief Summary' Print Ad?"). It's like a mystery I cannot solve! Someone please tell me what's going on!
One thing that's not a mystery are moron main stream "journalists" who repeat practically verbatim the stuff pharma PR wonks hand them. Rost pointed this out in his recent post, "Healthcare journalists are morons." [Rost is really on a Roll with his pharma-related posts lately!]
The story at the heart of this was about a Pfizer "study" that attempted to "generate the hypothesis" that you are at a higher risk of DEATH if you stop taking Pfizer's Lipitor and switched to Merck's generic Zocor!
Drat! I should have used the "hypothesis generating" weasel statement when I released the results of the Pharma Blogosphere Reader Survey! D'Oh!
Of course, I've known for a long time that health journalists were "marketers in PR clothes;" see, for example, "Marketing Disguised as PR" and "PR Marketing: Mystery Wrapped in a Riddle."
But health journalists are NOT morons. Far from it! They are part of the pharmaceutical industry's PR/Marketing team and THEY ARE UNREGULATED TO BOOT. Also, many health journalists end up working in Big Pharma corporate communications. Ray Jordan, J&J PR Veep, for example, started out as a journalist (see "Introducing Ray Jordan, J&J PR Veep, Winemaker!")