Thought Leader Select is a company focused on driving industry collaborations among biopharmaceutical, medical device, and diagnostics companies with leading medical experts and centers of excellence, with the ultimate goals of these collaborations being two-fold in purpose: better treatment options for patients and better outcomes for global public health. As part of our company’s mission, we work with multiple organizations to promote best practices that deliver ethical, transparent interactions among these various healthcare constituencies.
One of these groups is the recently-launched Medical Science Liaison Society, a global Non-Profit organization being led by the Chairman of the Board, Dr. Samuel Dyer. The MSL Society is filling a vital need for the expanding role of Medical Science Liaisons around the world, as they collaborate with KOLs, physicians, and other health care professionals to advance medical science together to improve the quality of life for patients everywhere.
Thought Leader Select’s Allison Murphy, a veteran MSL herself from her days working in the Endocrinology Medical Affairs unit at Eli Lilly and Company, recently sat down with Dr. Dyer to learn more about this emerging organization and the impact the MSL Society is having in promoting the role of Medical Science Liaisons in the pharmaceutical, biopharmaceutical, medical device, and diagnostics industries.
As in nearly all other aspects of life, social media is fast becoming a dominant force in the world of healthcare. Leading centers of excellence—hospitals, clinics, research foundations, and universities—are utilizing social media to educate patients about medical resources and treatments on a daily basis. Biopharmaceutical companies are using social media to promote new medications and further educate patients about other wellness resources at their disposal to help with debilitating diseases and conditions.
Physicians and other healthcare professionals, like practically every other profession, are embracing social media at unprecedented levels, engaging with each other on everything from new medical devices to tough medical cases. Due to this rise in HCP use of social media, some have begun to question the very essence of what makes a key opinion leader in the medical profession.
Some of these questioners have gone a step farther, at their ultimate peril, in misinterpreting physician involvement in spaces like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and physician-only social media networks like Sermo. They incorrectly perceive that social media participation is the new thought leadership. Last year, I sat in the audience for a presentation by a leader in the pharmaceutical industry. This person posited a talking point she’d heard from an executive at a physician-only social media network: “If you’re not in their social network, you’re not ... read more »
A recent article in the Wall Street Journal announced that Pfizer is conducting a clinical trial in which patients are able to use their computers and smartphones to enter information about the study, rather then spend time visiting a clinic. It was only a matter of time before clinical trials entered the social media era!
Actually, this approach makes a lot of sense, not just for the investigator, but especially for the patient. The patient is recruited over the Internet, enrolls electronically, receives laboratory tests in the mail along with test drugs, and tracks responses through an application on his or her computer or smartphone. Having participated in a clinical study before where I had to repeatedly return to the clinic, keep a paper log of reactions, bring in my responses to the study site, and answer weekly phone calls from the study nurse, I can say wholeheartedly that it was a big inconvenience. And all of that grief for the incredible reimbursement of $60!
We live in an age of instant and ubiquitous communication. I am never very far or long away from a business-related e-mail, even when I am on vacation. In fact, this instant communication has really changed the face of vacations for most people, but that is another subject ... read more »
February 14, 2011 (CHAPEL HILL, NC)—Thought Leader Select, a Research Triangle, NC firm focused on collaborations between the biopharmaceutical industry and the medical community, announces the launch of a new media partnership with biopharmaceutical industry blog Marketing4Health.
The research and consulting firm (Thought Leader Select) has signed on to become the blog’sexclusive sponsor, beginning February 14, 2011. With a growing international following and strong readership bases in the United States, Canada, and Europe, Marketing4Health focuses on healthcare and pharmaceutical marketing practices and challenges, as well as emerging trends in technology and social media. Natalie Bourre, the editor of Marketing4Health, is a 13-year industry veteran, with leadership positions at Alcon, Serono, and, most recently at Solvay, where she led the marketing team for Pantoloc (Protonix), which became the 5th largest Rx brand in Canada during her tenure.
“When we were seeking a media partner for 2011, the choice was obvious,” stated Brian Castle, the firm’s director of global marketing and client relations. “Natalie Bourre and Marketing4Health represent a perfect fit for our company, in that she is committed to advising the industry to market new medications in the right ways, whether to medical experts or consumers. With any advertising partnership, we want to drive potential clients our way, and we know that Natalie’s readers are our kind of people—leaders in the industry ... read more »
There’s been plenty of talk in recent months about the impact of social media on the future of healthcare. Many stakeholders are carving out their own space within the social media sphere, with customized strategies that fit their respective ambitions and external pressures, such as regulatory guidelines.
Biopharmaceutical companies are beginning to craft social media strategies and experiment with different activities; the FDA is reviewing potential social media guidelines; and medical professionals are individually using social media in a variety of ways. A recent article in MedAd News says that “according to Manhattan Research, 89 million American adults used social media for health in 2010”. That’s a staggering figure –nearly 30% of the American population used social media sites to discuss health-related issues. Evidence that the use of social media in healthcare is here to stay has even hit pop culture, when last week’s episode of Grey’s Anatomy featured Dr. Bailey tweeting her surgery play-by-play. Upon seeing how much visibility his department could attain within the medical community, even Chief Webber jumped on board!
At Thought Leader Select, we’re also examining how to better understand the ways that thought leaders in the medical community use social media. In our quest to stay on top of the trends among medical experts, we’d ... read more »
Brian Castle joined Thought Leader Select in January of 2010, as director of global marketing and client relations. Brian has 12 years of experience leading teams in business development, sales, marketing and customer services. He spent 11 years in the financial services industry, managing business units for several top banking institutions. Upon leaving the financial sector, Brian used his expertise in business development, communications and marketing to help business and non-profit clients develop and execute marketing, social media and branding strategies. In his new role at Thought Leader Select, Brian is helping the company expand its sales and marketing efforts and create a larger presence in the KOL identification and profiling marketplace.
The Thought Leader SelectBlog sat down with Brian, the powerhouse behind Thought Leader Select’s social media strategy, to learn more about his role within the company, what drives him at work and the extracurricular passions that make him unique.
TLS Blog: Good morning, Brian. What made you sign on with Thought Leader Select?
Brian Castle: I spent most of my career working in the financial services industry. When the industry started experiencing its recent turmoil, I decided it was time to make a change. So I reached out to several business owners and started collaborating with them on a host of projects in marketing, business development, social media, and public ... read more »
In a recent Marketing: Health blog post at MediaPost, Kathy Thorbahn of Razorfish Health, a marketing/advertising/public relations firm focused on health care industries, makes a strong case for the pharmaceutical industry to fully embrace social media in its efforts to give balanced information for consumers to make good health decisions.
While several companies are experimenting with self-created communities built around different products, brands, diseases and conditions, as well as starting Twitter accounts, Facebook pages, and YouTube channels for company news the promotion of certain products (see Digital Dose of Pharma for a list of pharma’s early adopters in social media), Thorbahn makes the point that the industry is missing out on the real essence of social media—“. . . ultimately social media is not about advertising, and it’s not about marketing. It’s about sharing the insight, information and tools that can help people make better decisions.”
In the not-too-distant future, we may see companies like Thought Leader Select and others, in their ongoing efforts to promote positive relationships among pharmaceutical companies, physicians, and patients, utilizing social media communities to bring these three groups together to share product information (pharma), treatment advice (doctors), and feedback about the effectiveness of drug therapies (patients). This level of communication and transparency, aimed at promoting the public health by drilling down to one-to-one interaction ... read more »