One of the painful facts of life is having to work and interact with people who think they know it all or believe they know what they are talking about. This is equally true in digital in healthcare. On the one hand we always talk about wanting more digital and social media activity in the industry but on the other hand we do not want it done badly. People who think they know what they are doing can be very dangerous if let loose on digital or even worse on social media.
The classic example here is the traditional pharma marketeer with years of traditional marketing experience who sees digital as “just another communication channel”. Whilst it is true that digital is another communication channel it is none the less distinct and requires some different thinking than traditional marketing. Digital does need to be integrated and work with the traditional marketing but it is not a simple “copy and paste” of the offline campaign. The “campaign” (see next post) needs to be adapted to suit digital – so for example a traditional sales rep print-out does not work as-is as an app for iPads or for an interactive edetail.
Digital also goes further and works differently than traditional marketing. At congress it is no longer just about the booth. Online activity at and around congress spikes substantially. Tightening budgets, both for organisations but also for HCPs, means that attendance is not likely to keep growing but interest will. People who are not able to attend still want to be able to follow the key issues and information being released at congress by going online. By restricting marketing at congress just to booth activities and ignoring the wider online ecosphere traditional orientated marketeers are missing a huge opportunity.
Another issue with “know it alls” is when they want to digital for the sake of doing it and ignore advice and guidance because they “know it all”! This is an unfortunate trait that goes across life (and there are some fabulous offline examples from the consulting industry) but unfortunately digital can amplify any mistakes made.
Sometimes education is a good way to tackle this issue – it can help to show people how digital really works and what the true benefits are. Of course the issue with the last example comes in that some people do not believe there is anything more they can learn and that they do indeed know it all. In these cases having good risk mitigation and crisis management plans in place is vital – if things go wrong then you are ready to tackle them!