Biopharma has encountered more critics than cheerleaders as it has cautiously edged into social media, but Boehringer Ingelheim has recently won a high-profile supporter--Twitter ($TWTR). In a case study, the social network praised Boehringer's use of its platform.
PMLiVE spotted the case study on Twitter's business-focused website. On the site, Twitter describes the social media tactics that have helped companies involved in publishing, entertainment and other consumer-focused industries, but there are noticeably fewer healthcare success stories. Boehringer is the first biopharma company to be picked out by Twitter. In its Boehringer case study, Twitter focuses in on the German biopharma's chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) tweet chats.Boehringer's Twitter header
Boehringer used the #COPDChat hashtag and paid for promotional tweets to raise its profile around last year's European Respiratory Society Congress (ERSC). Twitter reports the strategy resulted in Boehringer's account being the most mentioned username during the congress, contributing to a 7% jump in the number of people following the company. Over the course of the ERSC campaign tweet chat impressions totaled 1.7 million.
Twitter claims the campaign helped Boehringer become recognized as an industry leader in the use of digital platforms, but its effect on the business of developing and selling drugs is less tangible. The case study nonetheless provides some pointers for any drugmakers planning to ramp up their social media activities. Twitter cites Boehringer's strategy of getting tweets preapproved by "key stakeholders" as central to making the campaign work in the highly regulated biopharma industry.
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