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September 25, 2019 Linda Ruschau0

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I know the pain of losing a loved one to opioid addiction. My family continues to grieve the loss of an incredible young man who, after an awful car accident, began a decade-long battle against addiction to his prescribed painkillers. Three years ago, he lost that battle.

Countless other families have experienced similar losses due to our nationwide opioid crisis. According to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), more than 130 people die from opioid overdoses every day. It’s a devastating epidemic that impacts people of any age and from all walks of life.

To help combat opioid addiction, PatientPoint® collaborated with Shatterproof – a nonprofit organization focused on ending the stigma of addiction and improving addiction treatment – to create a powerful opioid education program at the point of care. It launched nationwide in October 2017 across the digital PatientPoint engagement platform, reaching an estimated 15 million patients and caregivers each month in waiting rooms, exam rooms, and in the physician back office. The content is designed to increase the awareness of opioid addiction and encourage doctor-patient discussions about other treatment options.

And the best news is, it is working and we are making a difference. An independent analysis by Symphony Health revealed that each of the 20,793 physicians who had the education program in their practices distributed 142 fewer opioid prescriptions over the eight-month study period than closely matched, non-participating physicians. That adds up to nearly 3 million fewer pills prescribed. If that doesn’t prove the effectiveness of messaging to physicians and patients at the point of care, I don’t know what will.

I often talk about the power of messaging at the point of care, but the results of PatientPoint-Shatterproof campaign really drive it home. I encourage you to read the case study for more details about this fantastic campaign and its impact on the fight against opioid addiction. You can find here.

September 25, 2019 Jason Lotkowictz0

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In pharmaceutical marketing circles, we hear sporadic boasts of a successful social campaign, award-winning content marketing, or insights drawn from a patient community platform. The ambitious brand manager takes these case studies back to the conference room, ready to formulate a new playbook, only to be overwhelmed by the complexities of operating in our highly regulated industry.

Progressive brand strategies shouldn’t be devised to win awards or dominate the marketing trades, but if done well, they certainly deserve accolades. More importantly, meeting your patients wherever they are while offering them interactive content, and adapting your message to service their needs, paves the road to better patient outcomes and higher return-on-investment.

Merck’s VERSED campaign is a great example of activating the system described above, to raise awareness around HPV vaccination. VERSED combines content marketing (, with short form social posts, interactive questions, and community guidelines for adverse event reporting.

While the campaign clearly put patients first, Merck and Klick Health also won the industry recognition they deserved.

Pharmaceutical campaigns that try to combine cutting-edge marketing technologies are often derailed by the breadth of stakeholders involved in the process. To limit disruption in creativity and execution, marketers should seek out cross-discipline solution providers, who can fast track the process. In its broader framework, The Tylt has been recognized as a pioneer in this space and the applications for healthcare are inspiring.

The Tylt is the fastest growing social polling and opinion platform on the web helping marketers create conversation, understand sentiment, and activate on vote-based data. Using patented technology, The Tylt collects opinions and relative influence data from our site and social channels in real-time. In partnership with brands, The Tylt can help achieve awareness and engagement goals by creating new content or reformatting current content for maximum interaction. Informed by voting behavior, marketers can extend the impact of a Tylt campaign by messaging audiences based on the vote they made.

For healthcare campaigns, the process begins with locating the right patient and encouraging them to share their opinion on a personally meaningful health topic. Patient advocacy becomes democratized when declared sentiments, informed by supporting evidence, are shared socially. By bringing structure to health conversations as they trend across social, patient insights can be identified and addressed in the next wave of interactive content, positioning the brand as a partner in the journey to better health.

For example, a multiple sclerosis brand may want to initiate patient interactions with a simple question: “To combat cognitive fatigue, what game do you prefer to play to keep your mind active?”

Answering that question in hashtag form (#SudokuForMS or #CrosswordForMS) creates a unique campaign identifier that allows for insights collection, as votes are shared across social media. The original question reaches an MS population with standard targeting models, whether they receive the poll on social media, as a display ad, or as a polling widget on or our partnered sites. While the brand itself may display sponsorship logos or embed assets throughout the campaign, the campaign value multiplies over time, by engaging patients after they’ve provided self-reported data.

The pharmaceutical marketing industry’s reliance on traditional media has reached the point of stagnation. With TV, print, or digital display, the highest spender wins share-of-voice, and if the product is effective, it gains market share. The only way to disrupt this model is to stay focused on innovations that add value through personalization, platform agnosticism, and a relentless focus on patient interaction.

To learn more about activating The Tylt in your next pharmaceutical marketing campaign, contact Jason Lotkowictz (

September 25, 2019 admin1

In its ongoing commitment to raising awareness of mental health conditions and treatments and to help the millions of suffering adults, Allergan launched a new campaign for VRAYLAR earlier this month. To represent the ups and downs of mood swings associated with bipolar I disorder, the campaign showcases a woman viewing various episodes of her life as she rides up and down in a shaky elevator.

In “The Ups and Downs Campaign,” upon entering the elevator and pressing the button to her floor, all of the button lights begin to flicker rapidly. The elevator plummets down, with the doors then opening to show her crying on the edge of her bed, before surging back up high, where the doors open on a scene of her arguing with a man. The elevator screen then shows the arrows pointing in both directions, as the doors open to reveal her clothes shopping in a panicked state. After taking VRAYLAR, the elevator ride steadies before stopping in her current life moment where she cleans up the mess in her bedroom, and then takes a smooth elevator ride to meet her date in the lobby.

The creative was shaped by “insights and anecdotes shared by” bipolar I disorder patients, according to the public relations team. “Using physical metaphors taken from how patients describe the condition,” this illustration helps describe the mood episodes as well as the transitions between, covering the full spectrum of bipolar I symptoms: depression, mixed episodes, and mania. The next stage of this campaign will introduce another visual, “inspired by real analogies real patients made about how the ups and downs of bipolar can feel. The intention is to help more people who may be living with the condition recognize the symptoms, and talk to their doctors to see appropriate treatment.”

The campaign includes in-network and cable spots, running in all time periods of the day but with a particular attention to specific shows. Print and newly designed website companion elements launched mid-month. BBDO created the ad; BCW supports the PR and strategic communications efforts for the brand.

September 25, 2019 admin0

Three new member companies have joined the Point of Care Communication Council (PoC3), as announced this month: CoverWrap Communications, Rx EDGE Media Network, and Targeted Media Health (a division of Meredith Corporation). In addition to “[helping] influence and amplify the future of POC marketing. In the near term, they plan to immerse into the PoC3 Verification & Validation Guidance effort and the establishment of measurement best practices.”

David M. Kenyon, CEO at CoverWrap Communications, Nate Lucht, President & CEO of Rx EDGE and Leverage Point Media, John Kenyon, VP and Managing Director with Targeted Media Health, were all in agreement as they shared their enthusiasm in joining PoC3 and helping to advocating for and strengthening the point of care space, as per the news release.

Karen Newmark, Executive Director with PoC3, shared how this continued expansion helps the association lead the progress: “PoC3 has grown tremendously over the past year, and we anticipate the growth increasing in 2020. We expect to see different types of companies, all with common interest in the PoC3 mission, wanting to build on the unprecedented momentum in the POC channel.”

Click here to read the complete news release and full team member statements:

September 24, 2019 admin0

The custom campaign, In These Rooms, launched this month to help transform the point of care space to a more empathetic “moments of care” image. Created by Outcome Health, a 90-second video was released which portrayed life-changing moments that patients and caregivers experience in waiting rooms and exam rooms. According to a news release, In These Rooms depicts “raw, authentic emotion” to create a shift in mindset when it comes to healthcare content in these locations and channels. The long-form video will be complemented by shorter spots – distributed via selected healthcare trade support – as well as a social media campaign.

To provide a well-rounded representation of potential patient and caregiver experiences with their healthcare professionals, the creative includes: “a waiting room, a pediatrician visit for an asthma check-up, an OB-GYN ultrasound room to hear a baby’s first heartbeat, a standard exam room for a long-overdue physical, and a doctor’s office to learn about treatment results.”

Matt McNally, CEO of Outcome Health and DTC Innovator honoree, stated in the news release: “In These Rooms challenges all pharma marketers and their agency partners to think differently about point of care and is the first step in our commitment to the ongoing understanding of the needs in this space. Today, we call on our industry to create content and experiences that wrap patients with empathy, education and support at the ‘moments of care’ when they are most vulnerable and need it most.”