Convosphere interview: Social intelligence for pharma companies
How do pharma companies and healthcare providers incorporate social intelligence into their market research strategies? We sat down with Jackie Cuyvers, the CEO of Convosphere, to answer this question and more on implementing actionable insights.
More and more, people are going online to connect and exchange knowledge regarding health. Patients, caregivers, and healthcare professionals (HCPs) are increasingly turning to social media and forums to connect with peers and share advice.
To adjust to this ever changing digital landscape, pharma companies need to explore new ways to gather patient insights. Watch the interview below with Convosphere CEO, Jackie Cuyvers, to learn more about social listening in the pharmaceutical industry.
Read select excerpts from the interview below.
I’ve been gathering a lot of data about what our customers are saying about us and our products. How can I turn this into actionable insight?
To turn social insights into actionable insights, you need a well-defined business question.
At its heart, you’re using the online data from conversations of patients, caregivers, and HCPs to help inform your decision making and make data-driven decisions.
In order for it to be actionable, you need a good understanding of not just the business question, but of the stakeholders who are involved in actioning that. Are they looking to better understand the unmet needs of patients, or are they looking to inform content strategy?
Lastly, you need both the qualitative and the quantitative, without that, it’s just a bunch of numbers. You need to take it beyond just the findings, and answer the so what, why, and why this matters. And now here are my recommendations on how to move that forward and how that’s going to enable those stakeholders to do business differently.
What questions do I need to consider before gathering data?
One of the key questions is, what research already exists, what information do you already have? Who are the stakeholders who are involved, how will they be using the data once you’ve gathered it? Is there a campaign coming up?
What other data sources are you going to use in addition to social data? For example, are you putting the social data in the context of campaign data, call center data, web traffic, or search data. And what are the pharmaceutical vigilance requirements that your organization has in terms of training or certification before embarking on social media research?
How can I make sure the data I’m collecting and the analysis I’m doing stays up to date and relevant?
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Again, it goes back to your business question that you’re working to answer and the stakeholders involved. The frequency and relevancy of both collecting the data, doing the analysis, and doing the reporting needs to be aligned with the timelines of the stakeholders who are going to action it.
For example, if it’s for a product launch, this could be a one-off report or for ongoing campaigns, it could be quarterly. For identifying influencers and profiling them, so for example you’re looking to form a KOL and KOI advisory board, this might be something you do annually versus more frequently.
If you’re using this data analysis alongside trackers you may already be running, social listening and social insights provide the so what and why to trackers, such as, your organization might have a CSR tracker running, then, in this case, your data collection might be daily or weekly.
How can I use social listening tools to help me understand my competitors better?
You want to cast your net wide to start with. Look at the entire therapeutic area or disease area discussion and see how people refer to treatments in this case. Look at not just what the brands and competitors themselves say, because they probably already have their own profiles and channels where they’re sharing content, but what people say about them, and what people say more broadly in the therapeutic area. And the other thing to understand is that there are different points in time where you may get a better understanding of your competitor.
Talkwalker's Quick Search function helps brands quickly compare their position with competitors.
I'm looking for ways to grow our business by expanding our offering. How can I discover new product ideas using social intelligence?
You can use social intelligence to innovate and expand by listening to the different audiences and segments. You could be listening to different HCPs and patients within a disease area, to understand what their unmet needs are, or where there are opportunities to find new types of treatments or modes of therapies.
You can also use social intelligence to grow and expand by looking and listening to what different influencers are saying, and monitoring trends that are emerging in different markets. It’s not just located in one market, you can use social listening to listen across the world. Innovation, ideas, a better understanding of these trends or needs can expand across multiple markets.
At what states in the pharma lifecycle can I use social listening?
You can use social listening across the entire pharma lifecycle. All the way from when a product is in clinical trials, understanding the needs of the patient community, concerns the caregivers may have, all the way through product launch, and going off patent.
At expiry, when the pharmaceutical company no longer wants to invest so heavily in marketing, they can be more strategic, by identifying influential HCPs online and understanding and speaking to the needs or interests of those, and getting that awareness out there without necessarily spending as much time in other marketing endeavors.
Thanks Jackie for taking the time to share your valuable insights. Talkwalker also partnered with Convosphere to analyze how a pharma company used social listening to connect with their audience. You can download the full case study below...