More than two-thirds (67%) of US physicians have a positive attitude toward electronic promotion (ePromotion) by pharmaceutical companies, and nearly three-fourths (73%) say they think ePromotion is equal or superior to face-to-face communication from drug sales reps, according to (pdf) an annual study on ePromotion? from SDI.
These 2008 numbers are up from last year’s survey and, according to SDI, indicate a growing trend that could influence the way pharmaceutical companies market to physicians. In 2007, 62% of physicians viewed ePromotion positively, while 68% considered it to be equal or superior to face-to-face communication.
Other key survey findings:
- 69% of physicians participate in electronic promotional activities after office hours, in the evenings.
- In 2008, the average time spent by a physician on a single ePromotion activity was 18 minutes.
- Overall, Merck was again ranked first by physicians for having the best ePromotion activities.
“Every year we have conducted this survey, we have seen acceptance toward ePromotion among physicians increase,” said Jason Fox, associate director at SDI. “Given how busy most doctors are and how expensive and challenging it has become for pharmaceutical companies to reach them, the results of this survey underscore a growing opportunity for the two groups to interact more regularly.”
ePromotion is defined by SDI as variety of technology-powered initiatives that help pharmaceutical companies communicate with and educate physicians about their product offerings. Examples of ePromotion include e-details, online seminars, opinion leader events, Web conferences, and group discussions.
About the survey: For the eighth year, SDI’s ePromotion study analyzed physicians’ attitudes about, and preferences for, ePromotion. The survey was fielded using SDI’s online market research platform and includes feedback from approximately 1,000 physicians across 14 specialties.