Do healthcare organisations require a medical communications agency to manage social media?

4 min read
First Published: 
May 2021

Key Learnings contained in this article:

As a normal practice social media agencies manage portfolios for a spectrum of industries ranging from hospitality to engineering goods and everything in between. For companies however, this means entrusting an external entity to build social proof and manage their reputation online.

In this time when a large number of industry professionals are spending more time on social media, the potential for breaking social proof for a company is extremely high.

Unless a healthcare organisation has an in-house social team, outsourcing social media management to an external agency with no healthcare or medical related background carries with it a unique set of challenges. The team responsible for the healthcare company’s online presence should at least have:

  • In-depth knowledge of various diseases and their related therapeutic areas
  • Working experience or a background in medical affairs, market access, health economics and regulatory areas
  • Specialized medical writing experience and knowledge of key medical terms
  • A good understanding of pharmacology and/or toxicology

Without the above mentioned requirements and experience, an agency with no medical or health care background will undoubtedly have a major challenge curating accurate content for a healthcare based target audience.

An established and experienced medical communications agency that has social media management SOPs in place will add great value in terms of developing objective oriented social media plans and meticulously created result-driven campaigns.

Having a medical writer who is experienced in the client’s medical specialization, disease and/or therapeutic area reviewing every piece of content will ensure the intended message is accurate and targeted at the right audience.

Some of the standard deliverables along with an estimated price that a medical communications agency can provide are listed below. It is important to keep in mind both the price and services mentioned below are very broad estimates and could vary significantly depending on the agency and client, exact nature of the project and its requirements.

As a rule of thumb, the agency and client will agree upon a set number of hours per month dedicated for the project. Any extra hours spent are billed additionally. Standard fees generally do not include social media ad spend, creative costs for video development, photo shoots etc. and costs to purchase licenced content.

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Renny J. Thomas
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