I was in the process of creating Twitter lists of pharmaceutical companies when I came to realize just how many Pharma Twitter accounts there are.
I am curious and I want to take a closer look at what is going on and why it could be happening.
question 1: so why so many Twitter accounts?
- the accounts may have been registered years back when “you had to be on social media”
- different product and business unit lines or roles (for example CEO) call for different and dedicated accounts
- several departments within the same organization may have created different accounts
question 2: can too many accounts be confusing for the audience?
- multiple products or brands speak to different audiences, so lumping accounts together could lead to confusion
- always good to keep brand and customer service accounts separate
- many pharma companies are creating accounts for specific campaigns:
- the purpose for marketing campaigns is to leverage the following you already have so why would you want to start from scratch with a new account?
- instead today it is better to use hashtags for campaign purposes instead of new Twitter accounts
- regional offices may want to have different account since they operate in different parts of the world:
- audiences speak different languages, could be distracting to see several different languages coming from one account
- different accounts allow for different versions of the same product with different regional regulatory policies
question 3: are multiple accounts worth the time and effort?
- accounts need content, day to day maintenance, engagement, and staff to keep the accounts running smoothly
- always remember what is the purpose for your Twitter account and are you meeting your followers needs
- remember several accounts can dilute content if you do not plan
- on the positive side more accounts also means more exposure, different audiences are following different accounts
- with multiple accounts brands can target niche audiences and provide customers with more engaging content
— Novartis Cancer (@NovartisCancer) February 28, 2017
question 4: should pharma have a social media customer service account?
- this is one of the main reasons for most companies to have a Twitter account in the first place
- always good to have a separate dedicated customer service account:
- makes it easier to monitor for customer service related tweets
- helps customer to know where to send comments or complaints or even adverse events
- a dedicated customer service account ensures that all of the branding activity is not over shadowed by complaints or comments or request for information
- make sure that customer service account is constantly being monitored
- good social media etiquette is to have person that wrote the tweet also sign it off
— GSK Response Center (@GSK_ResponseCtr) February 22, 2017
question 5: could the cause for all the Twitter accounts also be due to no alignment within the company on a social media strategy?
- social media sits across the entire organization and not on one sole team or brand
- in a crisis situation all teams and departments will want to act swiftly and messages must be coordinated
- we tend to forget but, social media has an effect on the entire organization not just one brand or campaign
- anything shared on social media platforms needs to be in alignment with the entire company
- pharma companies need to consider to have in place a social media community manager and an overall company social media strategy