Upclose Look at Pharma and Twitter – A Brief Profile

Last week I posted about the update to the database of pharma and social media use with respect to the increase in audience over last year.  While FDA’s OPDP was so complacent in coming forth in guidelines, the number of followers over the past year doubled.

A further look at the Twitter side of things indicates that not only have numbers gone up, but there are some pretty high KLOUT scores out there.  For those unfamiliar with KLOUT, it is a ranking/scoring service that assesses multiple criteria to arrive at a composite score for a twitter feed, ranking it 1-100.

Another possible revelation for some is about the origin of the feeds.  For those who think in “branded” terms, one might think that most feeds on Twitter run by the medical products industry are US-centric – because the U.S. allows direct-to-consumer promotion. However most feeds we found were outside the U.S., including those with the most influence.

Now let’s look at some of the other characteristics of the profile of pharma on Twitter.

  • First you will recall that the number of pharma-sponsored Twitter feeds contained in the database numbers 275;
  • Of the 275, only 117 (42 percent) are US-based while 158 (58 percent) appear to be outside the US;
  • However of the 117 US-based Twitter feeds, 65 percent (n=77) are updated on a regular or daily basis compared to 49 percent (n=78) outside the U.S.;
  • The highest KLOUT score came not from a feed out of the UK at a highly respectable 88 and the second highest was also out of the UK at 84 – the highest US clout score came in third at 78;
  • Finally, the twitter feeds that are updated on a regular or daily basis represented only 55 percent overall with the rest being updated either on a very irregular basis or not at all.

Which brings us to one other important issue to cover – the number of abandoned properties.  Some companies have many, many Twitter feeds which span a range of purpose.  Some are geographically based, as noted above, some are disease-focused.  Many are announcing opportunities in careers.  Some are focused on corporate social responsibility. But whatever the focused, there are a good number of abandoned properties –a subject written about here before.  It is always a good idea for a corporate brand to keep track of social media assets and delete those no longer in use.

Note:  You can see all of the pharma/device/biotech job tweets on the Eye on FDA Twitter Jobs List here.  You can see the list of pharma/device/biotech industry feeds here.  On the latter, the number represented is currently slightly less than is represented in the database.

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