Big pharma posted less on social last year, but which firm got the best engagement?

Big pharma firms posted less content on their social feeds last year, but grew their communities, according to a new report.

The Social Check-up by Ogilvy Healthworld UK and Pulsar also found that three of the firms that post with a below-average frequency are among those that get the most engagement.

The report looks at the global corporate Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube channels of 20 leading pharma firms.

As shown on slide three in the SlideShare embedded below, the average number of posts declined across each platform from 2016 to 2017, to fewer than three Twitter posts a day, less than one Facebook post a day and a little more than two Instagram posts per week. YouTube upload, by far the least frequent, rose.

However, slide four shows that audience sizes have grown by 47 per cent on Facebook, 15 per cent on Twitter, 50 per cent on YouTube and 67 per cent on Instagram.

Slide six plots weighted engagement scores for the 20 companies' posts against the total number of posts. In order, the five firms posting the most were:

  1. Roche
  2. Amgen
  3. Pfizer
  4. Johnson & Johnson
  5. GSK

Meanwhile, the five firms achieving the greatest levels of engagement were:

  1. Novo Nordisk
  2. Johnson & Johnson
  3. Merck/MSD
  4. Novartis
  5. GSK

As the report notes, Novo Nordisk, Novartis and Merck/MSD all made less than the average number of social posts over the period.

Chloe Partikas, social media director at Ogilvy Healthworld, said: "It is clear that the pharma social media space is changing. Pharma is reaching social media maturity, posting more strategically and tailoring content to the channel and audiences.

"The social media space is becoming ‘pay to play’ and companies are embracing paid social to ensure their content is visible in a very crowded space. Companies must continue to adapt their strategies to stay ahead of the game."

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