While the number of sales reps has doubled in the last 5 years, the number of physicians that these sales reps call on has stayed relatively constant. On top of that, new HIPAA privacy regulations, PhRMA guidelines, and OIG guidance have caused some physicians to push back on sales reps access. All this translates into decreased access time per sales rep and a decrease in ROI for physician marketing.
These and other factors are creating a need for "next generation" solutions for marketing to physicians that are more cost-effective and measurable. While most physicians can't imagine a world without pharmaceutical sales reps (e.g., free samples, article reprints, free lunch), they are increasingly looking to technology to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of their relationship with pharmaceutical companies.
An emergent segment of practicing physicians, according to Mark Bard, President of Manhattan Research, LLC, is the ePharma Physician® who is most likely to be using online pharmaceutical content and related services and will ultimately reshape pharmaceutical marketing in the coming years.
This article summarizes results from Manhattan Research's recently released survey: ePharma Physician® v3.0: The Future of Pharmaceutical e-Marketing, which focused on the adoption of emerging technologies by an early adopter physician audience. This audience is not small and cannot be ignored!
Data are presented showing which online marketing programs are considered most effective by this group of physicians and what they desire as the optimal channel mix for marketing programs.