Showing posts with label Marc Monseau. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Marc Monseau. Show all posts

Saturday, March 1, 2008

CNTO411: A New Pharmaceutical Company Blog

Centocor -- a J&J company that was the first to produce a feature length disease awareness documentary ("Innerstate") -- has just launched a new corporate blog that may break new ground in pharmaceutical company blogging. It's called "CNTO411".

The brains and bloggers behind CNTO411 are Melissa Katz, Senior Director of Corporate Communications at Centocor and her boss, Michael Parks, Vice President of Corporate Communications.

Here's an excerpt from the Inaugural Blog Posting:

“Why Centocor?” and “Why now?” Many of you may read John Mack’s blog, Pharma Marketing Blog. Almost a year ago, he blogged about the first of its kind patient education documentary film we made called Innerstate ( “No Oscar for Centocor PR Effort” [Feb. 26] and “The Innerstate DVD. Is TV Next?” [May 21]). Michael Parks, our VP of Communications who also produced the film, broke the traditional news comment mold and used the blog forum to respond to the comment and correct some inaccuracies by putting forth Centocor’s perspective and facts. In addition, he treated this blogger as we did every other journalist and let him screen the film. These small acts may appear to the casual observer to be incidental transactions, but for us, it was a big deal. Why? Because by engaging in a dialogue with John Mack in real time, he was able to immediately correct mis-information, provide the facts, and thus, give John a reason to restate his perspective.

How could he do that? Is that allowed? Should we be doing that? And what will the backlash be? Nobody knew. But that’s what pioneers do: they forge a path through the wilderness and hope they aren’t going to fall over a cliff.
I am flattered to be mentioned in this first post to CNTO411 and to be an inspiration for its launch. You can read more about my relationship to Michael, Melissa, and Innerstate on Pharma Marketing Blog (see "CNTO411: Centocor's Groundbreaking Blog").

I will be interviewing Melissa in a Pharma Marketing Talk podcast on Tuesday, March 4, 2008 at 2 PM. To learn more about this and get instructions for listening in and participating in this podcast, please click here.
Of course, Melissa and Michael owe a lot to Marc Monseau who started up the J&J corporate blog, JNJ BTW, in June 2007 (see "'Round the Sphere: Pharmaco Blogs and Carlat's Crusade").

Michael and Melissa promise to comment on Centocor product-specific news or issues on CNTO411, which would make it the first pharmaceutical blog to do so for prescription drugs, which are heavily regulated. How they plan to do this without "falling over a cliff" remains to be seen (REMICADE is mentioned in the inaugural posting). I hope Melissa will share some insights on that in my upcoming podcast interview.

Friday, October 26, 2007

'Round the Sphere: Marc v. Mack, POE v. MM&M, Commuincation v. Nooses

A few of us blogger denizens of the Pharma BlogosphereTM were out and about attending and/or presenting at pharma industry conferences this week.

Marc Monseau -- J&J BTW blogger -- and I teamed up at the Digital Pharma conference in Princeton, NJ, to do our audience-participation point-counterpoint routine on whether or not the pharmaceutical industry should embrace Web 2.0 (see "J&J Blog, Shire PR: The Whole Story and Nothing But the Whole Story!").

It was such a great success that I am thinking of trademarking it. But I'm afraid J&J might sue me, so I won't! ;-)

Ed Silverman at Pharmalot interrupted his busy blogging schedule to moderate a panel discussion at another pharma industry meeting hosted by DTC Perspectives in Parsippany, NJ. The panel of bloggers addressed the question, "Do Pharma Blogs Have Any Influence?"

This was a mystery panel -- the blogger panelists were not announced prior to the meeting although at one point it was rumored that Peter Rost was invited. But I think Peter was busy making a speech in the Swedish Parliament.

I planned to attend, but other business kept me tied down in my office. Perhaps Ed will enlighten us on the details later in a post to Pharmalot. I know my ears were burning all day!

What I do know is that DTC Perspectives had their annual POE awards dinner the night before and announced the winners of the most innovative DTC campaign. I had predicted the Gold and Silver winners, but was surprised and disappointed by the Bronze winner.

I didn't attend that event either because I rather be watercolor painting! This is my first composition. like it?

But I will be attending the even more gala, Black-Tie MM&M awards ceremony at Tavern on the Green in Central Park, NYC, on Thursday, November 1. For more on this, see "Awards: POE vs. MM&M. I Pick Winners!"

Finally, on a more serious note, Fard Johnmar over at HealthcareVOX blog, went "off topic" to comment on racist "gestures" like nooses hung on trees and doors and the brouhaha over a statement attributed to James Watson, winner of the Nobel Prize as co-discoverer of DNA's molecular structure. See Fard's comments here.

According to, Watson was quoted Oct. 14 in the Times of London saying he was "inherently gloomy about the prospect of Africa'' because "all our social policies are based on the fact that their intelligence is the same as ours -- whereas all the testing says not really.''

Ever since I read Watson's book, The Double Helix, I realized he was a pr*ck! His comment about Africans just confirms it. Let's put racism aside for a moment. May I ask, WTF do social policies have do with intelligence? I mean, should charity and financial aid go to only intelligent people rather than to anyone in need regardless of their intelligence?

Fard suggests that we should not waste our time condemning these idiots but rather counteract racist beliefs with communication:

So, I have a simple suggestion for communicators of all colors and creeds. People are quoting the 'science,' IQ tests and SAT scores to suggest that Blacks and Whites are not of equal intelligence. They also rely on anecdotal evidence, saying "look around, you can't help but notice that most Blacks don't take advantage of the opportunities they have in this country." If we want to change these beliefs, we have to replace assumptions with the facts. Show people why they are wrong by citing examples of the quiet, unheralded contributions Blacks are making in business, science, education, law and other areas. Condemnation is good, but saying 'this is wrong' and going back to business as usual two weeks later is criminal.
Fard cites a few names of Blacks that have made unheralded contributions to our society. What I want to know is, where are they in the pharmaceutical industry? I know they are there! I've met a few at industry meetings like Digital Pharma and have written at least one story in my newsletter about the work of a Black pharma product manager.

Women pharmaceutical executives have the Healthcare Businesswomen's Association but where is the Black Pharma Businessperson Association?

Fard, I think it would be a great idea to seek out Black professionals in the pharmaceutical industry and begin telling their stories. Let's ask Marc Monseau for help -- he may be interested in getting J&J employee stories posted to his blog!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

J&J Moving Towards "The Naked Pharma"

Johnson & Johnson's new corporate blog, JNJ BTW, deserves close scrutiny as Marc Monseau -- J&J's Corporate Communications Director and main author of JNJ BTW -- finds his "blogger legs" and continues to interact with other bloggers. It is truly an interesting experiment the like of which I haven't seen since the early to mid 90's when individuals within pharma companies launched and maintained their corporate websites with very little oversight from top management.

DISCLOSURE: I know Marc personally and have had several confidential discussions with him about blogging.
Recently, JNJ BTW was criticized by Jim Edwards of BrandweekNRX and compared to the Soviet era Pravda newspaper (read his post "J&J's New Corporate Blog: Is It Any Good?"). Marc not only responded to this criticism in a comment to Jim's post, but he also wrote a response in JNJ BTW itself (see "…And Speaking of Work") where he does a good job defending himself.

Not only is Marc responding to blogger criticism, he is also learning from it, I think. He agreed, for example, with my advice to include stories from J&J's rank and file employees (see "Advice to All Pharma PR Bloggers Out There"). Here's what he said about that:
John Mack also recently provided an assessment of JNJ BTW on his Pharma Marketing Blog. In it, he advised me and other corporate bloggers to try to bring in other voices from within their respective organizations.

Good advice. It’s actually something I’ve intended to do since I started JNJ BTW.

Just as there are “eight million stories in the naked city,” there are countless stories to be told by the folks who work at Johnson & Johnson or any corporation. I hope to soon have other people from Johnson & Johnson join me on JNJ BTW as guests to talk about some of the things they’ve been working on their personal experiences.
OK. I'll buy that Marc already had plans to do what I suggested. But I made this suggestion some time ago before I even knew Marc (see "A Primer on Pharma Employee Blogging").

Marc's reference to the noir film The Naked City -- which was inspired by 30's photographer Weegee (the photo above was shot by Weegee) -- is not only apt, but sheds some light on Marc's interests, which I know include films. It's apt because good corporate blogs have been described as "naked conversations" in a book by the same name. [Maybe Marc should rename his blog "The Naked J&J". Just kiddin' Marc!]

The Naked City movie is pretty gruesome as were some of Weegee's photos. Hopefully, we won't see JNJ BTW evolve into that dark realm.

I also hope that JNJ Blog doesn't go the way of pharmaceutical corporate Web sites. In the 90's not too many pharma C-level execs thought too much about the Internet and they were blissfully unaware that their companies even had a Web site. But they soon wised up and took control and what we are left with today are glossy online brochures without souls.

It would definitely be a shame if one day J&J did the same to JNJ BTW. I am sure there are controls already in place just as Marc says. I don't want to hear from corporate J&J. I like hearing from Marc, a real person who signs his posts and reveals snippets of who he is. I hope other employees at J&J will soon join Marc.