Mar 13, 2012
Today, marketing to consumers is about meeting the needs of individuals, reaching out to them in their online spaces, and integrating into their daily lives. Doctors diagnose patients and prescribe treatment regimens unique to the needs of each individual patient. To get the best results, your marketing campaign should do the same. That’s where crowdsourcing comes in.
Crowdsourcing is a way to quickly obtain feedback and direction from relevant online audiences about your campaign/communications challenge—think of crowdsourcing as a cross between a
focus group and a quantitative survey. To better determine the role crowdsourcing could play in pharma, we decided to conduct a social experiment.
THE SOCIAL EXPERIMENT
We kept the exercise simple and designed a crowdsourcing experiment that enlisted caregivers of cancer patients, asking them to better define their needs and perceived duties around the task of care giving, and simply asked them what they needed from a support program. What we learned opened our eyes to the power and passion of individuals.
ENGAGING THE CROWD
A short survey consisting of just three questions was designed and pushed out to 37 different online groups across several social media channels, including Facebook, LinkedIn, and forums—all were cancer-related social networks. I used my real name, my actual Gmail account (or forum-specific identity for transparency), and clearly stated that I was interested in creating better caregiver/patient support programs.
Twenty-five responses were received within 24 hours of the program launch, representing half of the 50 total completes received during the seven-day experiment. While we can’t fit all of the findings from the crowd in this post, two key findings came across loud and clear.
- Caregivers of cancer patients need help with the basics of everyday life.
80% of the crowd felt keeping their patient in good spirits and making sure their patient took their medication were top of the list. Following close behind were providing transportation, performing chores/shopping, and attending doctor appointments with the patient for whom they provide care. And, the caregivers stated they needed more than a great patient-support program. They needed support in taking care of themselves, getting a break to avoid burnout, and keeping their own attitudes positive.
- Providing day-to-day medical management is the job of the healthcare team.
Only 35% of the crowd felt they should be monitoring their patient’s progress or taking vital signs. Similarly, just 35% of the crowd felt they should be advising their patients about treatment options. Simply put, the majority of the crowd doesn’t feel they need support here and rely on the doctors and treatment teams to provide this level of support.
How are you leveraging social media and the crowd in new and innovative ways to deliver more relevant content and value? E-mail me or post a comment below to discuss what’s working for you and how you’re blazing new trails.
By Kurt Mueller, Chief Digital & Science Officer Roska Healthcare Advertising