The marketing medium of the Internet is the focus of this month’s special For Art’s Sake department (see related story on page 36). Pharmaceutical companies are learning that the power of the Internet cannot be ignored. About 6 million Americans go online for medical advice on a typical day, more people than actually visit health professionals.
The marketers of Famvir, Celebrex, NicoDerm CQ and other smoking-cessation products, and the resource center for ElderCare, are to be commended for taking full advantage of the Internet’s power. Novartis Pharmaceuticals’ Website for its genital herpes product Famvir, has been identified as an exemplary example of niche marketing for its approach to product differentiation. Pfizer’s Celebrex site is interactive, educational, and meets the company’s brand objectives. GlaxoSmithKline’s Web initiative for NicoDerm CQ also is educational as well as motivational. Janssen Pharmaceutica’s ElderCare site is an excellent blend of form and function.
Contributed by Shelly Bowen, Director of Interactive Content, RealAge Inc.
I recently ran across one such prominent delivery method at Celebrex.com. They used Flash animation to illustrate what happens when someone develops osteoarthritis and then compared this condition with rheumatoid arthritis. In only a few frames, the reader grasps the effects of the conditions, the differences, and what Celebrex does to the body to help the patient. The experience is interactive, educational, and meets the company’s brand objectives.
Another company that has grasped the importance of educating their audience in a relevant, intriguing way is GlaxoSmithKline. The company created a mostly nonbranded site called Quit.com that features a “mind, body, habit” whole-body approach to quitting smoking. This experience, too, is educational, but also motivational, which is imperative to moving…
Contributed by Joe Farris, Chief Operating Officer, Manhattan Research LLC
From a strategic perspective, Famvir — a Novartis Pharmaceuticals’ product indicated for genital herpes — is in a league of its own. The brand has fully exploited the online media, while other category competitors have taken the more traveled route of traditional mass media. Famvir exemplifies niche marketing in its approach to product differentiation — in addition to reaching consumers with sensitive conditions online, where they may be more comfortable…
Contributed by Alice Degenhardt, VP and Design Director, Thomson Physicians World
In my 25 years as director of art for Thomson Physicians World, I’ve had the chance to view and work with the full gamut of medical art forms and media, including healthcare Websites. The thing I find most fascinating about the Internet, given its hybrid nature as both medium and message, is its unique ability to educate and inspire as well as entertain.
I really admire the Janssen ElderCare site because of its excellent blend of form and function. Not only is the site visually arresting and very cleanly designed, it’s extremely easy to navigate — qualities that are harder to find on the Web than one might think. “Functionality” is the word that kept coming to mind when I clicked…