Thursday, March 18, 2010

Drug Companies Are Flocking to Facebook for Eyeballs, Not Conversation

More and more pharmaceutical companies are launching Facebook pages that promote their products. The latest is Allergan, which launched a celebrity Facebook campaign for Juvederm, a dermal filler used for "long-lasting correction of moderate to severe facial wrinkles and folds." Allergan also makes Botox.

According to an MM&M story, "Ex-Extra host and broadcast journalist Dayna Devon will dispense personal tips to Facebook fans each week, and is sharing her experience with Juvederm through the social networking site."

But why open up a Facebook page, which looks like just another product website (see screen shot below), especially if you are not going to accept and publish comments to the Wall?


IMHO, Allergan and other pharma companies are not launching Facebook pages to "engage" consumers in "dialogue." First, there is no "dialogue." Of course, the excuse is that pharma is waiting for the FDA to publish guidelines that will allow them to use ALL the nifty social networking features of Facebook, including online dialogue. Here's an example of how the FDA is being blamed for not "allowing" comments on pharma Facebook pages:
@RosettaHC tweeted: Juvederm launches Facebook page. No open comments allowed. (FDA: when's guidance coming?) http://bit.ly/aPpC8v #hcsm #fdasm
If it looks like a Web 1.0 site and acts like a Web 1.0 site, why not just stick to a Web 1.0 site and forget about Facebook?

The REAL reason for launching Facebook pages is because of Facebook's POPULARITY and the number of "eyeballs" it can deliver, not the the number of conversations. According to the latest Hitwise analysis, Facebook has surpassed Google in terms of Web site traffic (see figure below and "Facebook More Popular Than Google? Let the Ad Wars Begin").

3 comments:

  1. I'm not really sure where MM&M came up with this, but Allergan has had this Juvederm page for quite some time. It's been on the Pharma and Healthcare Social Media Wiki that I manage for about 5 month, which means it existed even before that.

    http://www.doseofdigital.com/healthcare-pharma-social-media-wiki/

    Jonathan
    Dose of Digital

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  2. Thanks. I was wondering how it got over 4,000 fans so quickly!

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  3. it will be unfortunate if companies only go to facebook for eyeballs as the audience goes there for conversation (engagement). the first company that offers conversation will win.

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