Report: Big Data, social media and mobile double their share of biopharma marketing mix

Over the past decade a plethora of digital formats have begun competing with print, television, radio and conferences for biopharma marketeers' budgets. And while initial uptake was slow, a survey has now found that Big Data, social media and mobile have doubled their share of the marketing mix since 2012.

The data comes from Cutting Edge Information, a life sciences consultancy that surveyed biopharma marketing executives about their spending over the past three years. In 2012, Big Data, social media and mobile accounted for 9% of the marketing mix. A surge in spending on social media last year increased the digital mediums' collective share of marketeers' budgets to 15%, and the upward trend continued in 2014. The survey suggests the three digital formats now account for 21% of the marketing mix, more than double their stake in 2012.

Strong investment in mobile and Big Data drove the increase seen in 2014. Mobile now accounts for 13% of the marketing mix, with executives telling Cutting Edge Information the platform is best suited for disease management and physician education. The survey findings are corroborated by the steady stream of mobile apps introduced to Apple ($AAPL) and--increasingly--Android devices over the past few years. Eli Lilly ($LLY), Novartis ($NVS), Sanofi ($SNY) and many of their Big Pharma peers have rolled out new apps over the past 18 months.

Other surveys--such as one run by Medical Marketing & Media--have found biopharma marketing spending is flat, so the increased focus on the three digital platforms is likely coming at the expense of other areas. Cutting Edge Information found the share of marketing budgets allocated to print and conferences fell in 2013 and again in 2014. Spending on television and radio was flat over the same period. Big Data, social media and mobile may also be slowing growth in traditional digital channels, such as banner adverts. The category accounted for 12% of marketing in 2014, up from 10% in 2012.

- here's the CEI release

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