Friday, February 20, 2009

Pharma Strategy Blog

I found this fascinating quote today:

What would happen if an enlightened medical, new product or marketing team took the same RSS links and fed them into Twitterfeed and hence to a Twitter or Friendfeed account and aggregated numerous sources of interesting data?  Would that be education or promotion?  Or suppose there was also a blog with lovely widgets and chicklets saying Add Me to your RSS Reader or Email Me when a new post goes up or Share This with others via StumbleUpon, Digg, Mixx, Facebook etc.Sally Church, Pharma Strategy Blog, Feb 2009

You should read the whole article.

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Wii Attracting Young Boys, Older Women in Droves - Nielsen

Wii Attracting Young Boys, Older Women in Droves – Nielsen

New usage data from Nielsen confirms what many of us have observed: Wii is attracting a new audience, but that audience isn't playing very often compared to PS3 and 360 gamers.

by James Brightman on Tuesday, February 17, 2009

With all the talk of Nintendo expanding the video game audience, it should come as little surprise that new data from Nielsen Media Research suggests that Wii fares best with young boys and older women. The metered usage data, which covers last year's all-important fourth quarter (October – December), shows that Nintendo's console does a good job attracting boys age 6-11 and women age 25-34.

Furthermore, usage of the Wii by women over 35 is much higher than with the Xbox 360 and PS3. Wii Fit, Guitar Hero and Rock Band were cited as products that have been particularly enticing for older females. While the Wii has certainly brought in a new audience, the more traditional 18-24 age group (often looked at as the hardcore gamer demographic) has engaged in much less Wii usage – for both genders in this age range.

As for the other consoles, Nielsen found the PS3 to skew the oldest of the three platforms, possibly because of consumer brand loyalty and since Sony dominated the market with the PS One in 1994 and PS2 in 2000. "Gamers who owned one or both of these consoles in their youth may have 'graduated' to the PS3 in their assumed adulthood. For both males and females, the highest usage came from the 18-24 age group," Nielsen noted. Microsoft's Xbox 360, meanwhile, seemed to find the middle ground between Wii and PS3. Among males, the largest percentage of usage was found in the 12-17 age group, older than Wii, but younger than PS3. For females, the 25-34 age group had the highest percentage of usage.

Overall, however, while the Wii was the least used console on average, the Xbox 360 saw males using the Xbox 360 on nearly twice as many days per month as females (10.2 vs. 5.4 in December). On the PS3 and Wii, usage breakdown by gender was much more balanced.

"All three of the consoles have their fans, and sales of consoles and games have been some of the few bright spots in an otherwise bleak retail environment," said Bradley Raczka, Marketing Manager for Nielsen Games. "It will be interesting to watch the continued migration to the current generation consoles in 2009, and see how releases of titles such as Halo Wars, Resident Evil 5, MadWorld, Killzone 2 and Street Fighter IV impact usage trends in the first half of the year."

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Plugging in to Social Networkers' Behavior

Plugging in to Social Networkers’ Behavior

FEBRUARY 20, 2009

Brands do best by helping users do what they like

In the social media arena, marketers know that traffic is high and increasing, but social networks have yet to find a solid revenue stream.

The disparity between usage and advertising is striking.

In 2009, more than 44% of Internet users will visit a social network at least once per month, according to eMarketer. But social network advertising represents just 5% of overall online ad dollars.

It’s no wonder that traditional online ad formats, such as display, are not terribly successful. Social networkers are preoccupied.

A November 2008 JPMorgan survey showed that 78% of online social networkers were there to keep in touch with friends. One-half of respondents said they wanted to connect with old friends. Many more were engaged with content, such as sharing photographs or music.

Marketers will get more leverage with consumers by providing widgets and other applications to help people chat and create and share content, as Ian Schafer, CEO and founder of ad agency Deep Focus, told eMarketer.

“Social networking is not just about the display advertising, it’s about the other things that you can do with it,” he said. “For example, if my audience is active on Facebook, I want to be sure that I am making it very easy for someone to share whatever content they’re creating or consuming with all their friends.”

Capturing and making sense of all the activity on social sites is daunting for marketers, admitted Debra Aho Williamson, senior analyst at eMarketer.

But there are a number of methods for marketers to tap into these sites.

“Social networks are where consumers feel comfortable expressing their feelings—good or bad—about companies, products and services,” Ms. Williamson said. “Marketers, retailers and social networks have an opportunity to tap into this stream of information-sharing.”

Both MySpace and Facebook are exploring e-commerce initiatives that incorporate users into the process. For instance, at MySpace Music users can purchase downloads of songs on friends’ playlists. MySpace and Facebook have classified ads where friends can sell to other friends.

“These offerings are only the beginning,” Ms. Williamson said.

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Wii's Secret To Success: Young Boys And Old Women

Wii's Secret To Success: Young Boys And Old Women

Posted using ShareThis

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Thursday, February 19, 2009

FDA Uses Social Media, But You Can’t

FDA Uses Social Media, But You Can’t

Posted using ShareThis

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Gaming To Save Healthcare Marketing

Gaming To Save Healthcare Marketing

Posted using ShareThis

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Novartis, Boehringer Start Using Twitter Accounts

Novartis, Boehringer Start Using Twitter Accounts
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Great read! Social Media Marketing Is A Multicultural World

Social Media Marketing Is A Multicultural World

By Felipe Korzenny Thursday, February 19, 2009 (Mediapost)

Social media is now ubiquitous. Usage of blogs, social networks, and video sharing sites is increasing rapidly, and millions of people now look to social media sites as their primary source of news, opinion, and entertainment. As we witness this dramatic shift from traditional to social media, we believe it's important to examine its cultural dimensions - that is, who is driving this shift, what are the cultural factors behind it, and what are the implications for marketers seeking to reach specific ethnic/cultural groups via social media?

We recently conducted an analysis of newly collected data to examine the patterns of social media behaviors of different ethnic/cultural groups in the U.S. The data come from the Florida State University Center for Hispanic Marketing Communication with the support of DMS Research from a national online sample of nearly 2,500 people with approximately 500 cases in each of the following cultural groups: Hispanics who prefer English, Hispanics who prefer Spanish, Non-Hispanic Whites, African Americans, and Asians in the United States.

We aggregated information to find out what ethnic/cultural groups are more likely to visit social networking sites. We found broad diversity in social media behaviors among different ethnic/cultural groups and that emerging minorities visit social networking sites more frequently than non-Hispanic whites.

Percent of respondents who visit social networking sites more than 2 or 3 times a month:

English-preferring Hispanics,36%
Asians, 34%
Spanish-preferring Hispanics, 27%
African Americans, 26%
Non-Hispanic whites,18%

We then broke out the data for leading social networks, MySpace and Facebook, to see if there are any groups leading usage of the most popular social networking sites - again, minorities lead the way, with English-preferring Hispanics being twice as likely to visit MySpace regularly than non-Hispanic whites. The relative importance of emerging minorities as compared with the traditional majority points to a major shift in social influence.

Percent of respondents who visit MySpace or Facebook "regularly":

English-preferring Hispanics,44% (MySpace) 18% (Facebook)
Spanish-preferring Hispanics,35% and 13%
Asians, 31% and 18%
African Americans, 29% and 12%
Non-Hispanic whites,22% and 7%

These data are interesting, but in order for these findings to be useful and actionable for us as marketers, we need to determine the reason for the strong representation of ethnic minorities on social networking sites and how to best engage with this audience. We believe that there is a mix of cultural, demographic and market factors that make social media particularly appealing to emerging minorities.

Demographically, ethnic minorities are younger than non-Hispanic whites. It's no secret that younger people in general are more likely to adopt new technologies, particularly technologies that enable communication and provide social connectivity. This age gap between minorities and non-Hispanics only partially explains the gap in social media involvement.

In order to analyze the influence of age on social media behavior, we divided respondents into two segments, those 35 years of age and younger and those 36 years of age and older. The following shows that people 35 and younger of all cultural backgrounds are more likely to use social media, with Hispanics who prefer to communicate in Spanish lagging behind. Young Spanish-preferring Hispanics may lag because they are likely to be newer to the Internet, and also because their friends and relatives are less likely to be online due to economic and access factors. While Hispanics in general are aggressively getting online, those less acculturated are still somewhat less represented in the digital realm today.

Percent of respondents 35 and younger who visit social networking sites more than 2 or 3 times a month:

English-preferring Hispanics, 58%
Asians, 58%
Non-Hispanic whites, 57%
Spanish-preferring Hispanics, 33%
African Americans, 33%

When examining the usage of social networking sites among those 36 and older, we find that older Hispanics, regardless of language preference, are more active, especially when compared non-Hispanic whites within the same age group.

Percent of respondents 36 and older who visit social networking sites more than 2 or 3 times a month:

English-preferring Hispanics, 24%
Asians, 24%
Spanish-preferring Hispanics, 23%
African Americans, 17%
Non-Hispanic whites, 13%

This substantiates the notion that age is only a partial explanation for the higher usage of social media among Hispanics and other ethnic minorities. Culture and market factors also play an important role in promoting online social connectivity among these groups.

Culturally, ethnic minorities tend to be drawn to collectivistic values and often look to one another to help guide decisions and opinions. In addition, ethnic minorities are more likely to leverage social networks to communicate with groups of family and friends who are geographically dispersed. Social media facilitates such collective sharing of information and communication.

In addition, market forces are driving ethnic minorities to use social media. There is a dearth of culturally relevant and in-language content available online. As a result, ethnic minorities tend to be proactive and create and share their own content and social networks are ideal platforms for publishing and distributing such original content.

Social networking services allow people to organize and enhance their relationships online, but regardless of technology, culture is still the glue that bonds people together. Marketers seeking to reach ethnic minorities through social media must reinforce and connect with the culture of their target audience if they seek to strengthen their clients' brands on social networks - doing so requires a strategic long term approach that should include the following elements:

Define your objectives

Using social media can accomplish a number of business objectives. Do you want to advertise a new product? Gather research? Provide customer service and build goodwill? Knowing what you're looking for will make it much easier to find.

Understand your audience and be strategic

A successful social media strategy requires a clear definition of objectives, understanding o your audience and a strategy for engaging them. Consider the cultural motivations that are driving your target audience to social media. Are they there to talk about music? Are they keeping in touch with relatives overseas? Are they there to connect and share their collective culture? What language are they using? They may be doing all of these things and more, but if you can determine what's drawing your audience to social media in the first place, you'll have a better chance of engaging them when you join their conversations. Building and maintaining conversations with a target audience requires research, careful planning and a strategic approach.

Dedicate resources to proactively engage your audience with timely and relevant content

Ethnic minorities are turning to social networks to express themselves, connect with their culture and communicate with each other. To be successful, marketers must be open to engaging audiences with timely and relevant content that stimulates feedback and sharing. Engaging in meaningful conversations is the goal of social media marketing and doing so requires a deep understanding of needs, openness to negative commentary and dedicated resources. A social media presence is worthless if it lies dormant.

The time is now

Few marketers are proactively targeting ethnic minorities online and even fewer are leveraging social media to do so. A first mover advantage is available for those that devote the time and resources to engage these critical audiences in ways that they find meaningful. The fact is that we now have an unprecedented ability to reach and interact with ethnic minorities; and companies that deliver value to this segment today will be rewarded with the long-term loyalty of this market.

Brief note on the author: Felipe Korzenny is the director of the Center for Hispanic Marketing Communication at Florida State University and senior strategy consultant at Captura Group. He has over 30 years of Hispanic marketing experience and has published six books, nearly 100 publications on communication and culture and is a prominent nationwide speaker. Email him at:

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Site lets advertisers target users based on poll answers

Site lets advertisers target users based on poll answers

Social media site is allowing advertisers to target users based on their answers to poll questions. The site, which has more than 1 million registered users, lets users pose questions to others, ranging from whether users like President Obama to whether a college degree is important. is letting advertisers put these answers to good use. For example, people who answered yes to the question "Are the Jonas Brothers the new Beatles?" received a Kohl's promotion, reports ClickZ. Young women were the targeted audience for Kohl's campaign and were also most likely to answer yes. also says companies use its customized poll widget to better engage their audience.

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Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Everyday Health continues to make gains in online consumer health space

Everyday Health continues to make gains in online consumer health space

Citing comScore Media Metrix rankings, Everyday Health reports that it was the most visited online consumer health network for the last three months of 2008 and January 2009. It was also one of the top five gaining U.S. properties for 2008, according to comScore's 2008 Digital Year in Review. For the past four months, the Everyday Health Network says it has attracted more than 25 million unique monthly visitors to its 24 sites. Its advertisers include Pfizer, AstraZeneca, and GlaxoSmithKline

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Online ratings service lets users update Facebook page with reviews

Online ratings service lets users update Facebook page with reviews, a Web site that helps consumers find and rate services, including doctors, now has a Facebook presence. Users can share recommendations with their Facebook friends whenever they write a review on, thanks to Facebook Connect. users can log in to the local online business directory with their Facebook ID and password. Users will see their Facebook friends on their personal My Kudzu page and can post reviews to their Facebook Mini Feeds without leaving

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Project launches beta technology platform for healthcare community

The Medpedia Project has publicly launched the beta version of a technology platform for the worldwide health community. The long-term project aims to create a new model for sharing and advancing knowledge about health through a free, easy-to-understand online technology platform. The Medpedia Platform includes three services: a collaborative knowledge base, a professional network and directory for health professionals and organizations, and communities of interest in which users can share information about conditions, treatments, lifestyle choices. This free resource is available today at Since the announcement of the project in July 2008, more than 110 organizations have contributed or pledged more than 7,000 pages of content to the knowledge base, and thousands of people have become a part of the community.

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Web-based services get Merck high marks among U.S. physicians

Web-based services get Merck high marks among U.S. physicians

Strong ratings among doctors for Merck's Web-based physician services and patient information programs garnered the company the top spot among physicians for effectively delivering sales and service activities. Physicians in the United Kingdom, Germany, Spain, and Italy gave that distinction to Novartis, according to TNS Healthcare research. Merck tied with Novartis in the United Kingdom and Germany. In 2008, Merck and Novartis tied for the top spot in the United States. The report shows that in the United States, companies score well on reps' knowledge, as well as new service elements such as Web-based services, educational programs, and patient support.

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