New Pharma in New Media – GSK Launches New Blog – Teva a New YouTube Channel

Slowly, but surely, the migration of pharmaceutical companies into new media is occurring.  Given it has b een a glacial pace, and far behind other industries.  FDA's DDMAC says one thing and does another when it comes to regulating the digital space, creating even more uncertainty.  Nevertheless, the march of progress goes on and industry with it.

GlaxoSmithKline has launched a new blog – More Than Medicine.  People in the home country of GSK, the United Kingdom, aren't meant to be readers.  The blog states specifically that "This is an official GSK blog and is intended for U.S. residents only."  The blog apparently launched in January 2009, but I only just noticed it.  There were only four postings in January, up to 14 in April and 8 so far in May. In many respects, the blog appears to emulate JNJBTW, Johnson & Johnson's corporate blog.  The blog is a subdomain of the GSK site.  I appear to be about the last to catch wind of the site.  But it is interesting development given the failure of the other GSK blog – alliconnect where there hasn't been a posting since September 2008.  It was designed for customer support in use of an OTC product.  However a corporate platform may be more desirable, allowing companies to speak to stakeholders on a wide range of topics.  

The editor is listed as "Michael M" which is a little odd given that the About this Blog section indicates that the purpose of the blog is to seem a little less stuffy and formulaic.  But the existence of an editor indicates several writing sources, which makes it a challenge to "find a voice" when putting together a blog.  

The other development is new.  Teva has launched a new YouTube channel about Parkinson's Disease.  The channel is called TevaNeuroHealth.  The channel links back not to the Teva site, but to a Web site designed for patient education around Parkinsons Disease, indicating the channel is a digital/social media extension to educate patients around that effort.  So far, there is a single video and the sponsor has disabled the ability to comment and is not allowing embedding, not unlike the GSK channel GSKVision.  However, it is a somewhat socialized channel, already subscribing to other videos and developing friends on YouTube.  Other channels such as Sanofi-Aventis' goinsulin and AstraZeneca's myasthmastory both feature patients and have taken off at the box office.  Channels that feature patient stories seem to be prospering.  One of the most interesting parts of the narrative accompanying the channel is the encouragement of consumers to report negative side effects of drugs and the provision of information on how to do that.  

I'll try to keep better tabs on the blogosphere!
By way of disclosure, the Teva YouTube channel is connnected with efforts of some of my professional colleagues.  
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