Wednesday, September 02, 2015

Will the REAL Nexium Facebook Page Please Stand Up?

My friend Zoe Dunn (@zdunnhealth), a digital marketing consultant to the pharma industry, wrote a piece in MM&M titled “Is It Finally Time for Pharma to Change the Way It Uses Facebook?” (see here).

In that article, Zoe chides the pharma industry for not engaging and supporting users of their Rx drugs via Facebook.

“Pharma has hidden behind the ability to turn commenting off on Facebook pages,” Zoe notes, “allowing marketers to use the channel much as they would a typical web page.”

A good example of how an Rx brand should use Facebook, according to Zoe, is the Nexium FB page. “Look at what the team behind acid-reflux medication Nexium has done, for example. The brand has had an 'open' branded Facebook page from the very moment the page launched late last year.”

Unfortunately, the article did not include a link to the Nexium Facebook page she was talking about. I had to fend for myself and do a search on Facebook. Guess what I found.

My search immediately lead to the Nexium24HR page (see image below). Nexium 24HR is the OTC version of Rx Nexium. The FB page responds to several consumer complaints about not being able to access the advertised coupon or about how lousy the packaging is. There's a lot of negativity here but not of the side effects kind of negativity. Which may be tolerable and OK for an OTC brand, but not so much for an Rx brand.

Click on image for an enlarged view.
The next search result brought me to the “unofficial” OTC Nexium FB page (see image below), which seems to be run by the Nexium ad agency because of all the positive and “off-label” comments such as “'I take nexium to help my Barretts. Trying to not have it turn to cancer” and links to the official Nexium website and to studies disparaging the competition. Although the page claims it is “in no way ... associated with 'Nexium' or its manufacturer,” I find this to be in the “I am not a crook” category of disclaimers.

Click on image for an enlarged view.
Finally, Zoe pointed me to the official Rx Nexium page (see image below), which is what Zoe was talking about. My bad.

Click on image for an enlarged view.
It's interesting to note how the Nexium Rx people handle comments from visitors such as this one from Jane Bell Dement:

“I hesitate to ask, but is there a generic for Nexium?”

Like Donald Trump or Hilary Clinton, AZ really didn't answer the question, although it addressed Ms Dement by her first name (the first rule of “engagement”):

“Hi, Jane. Your branded prescription NEXIUM has been here for over 12 years. And even as generics become available, we’re going to continue to be here for you. We’re also offering our best savings ever, which may help you save. Our downloadable Savings Card ( allows most eligible patients to get prescription NEXIUM for $15/month or $30 for a 90-day supply. Eligibility restrictions do apply.”

Jeez! ABC - Always Be Closing!

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