Twitter is a Petri Dish: Growing Your Social Media Culture in a Regulated Environment


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Slides from Shwen Gwee's May 2010 talk at iStrategy SF on "Growing Your Social Media Culture in a Regulated Environment".

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Twitter is a Petri Dish: Growing Your Social Media Culture in a Regulated Environment

  1. 1. Twitter is a Petri Dish:Growing Your Social Media Culture in a Regulated Environment by Shwen Gwee (@shwen) Founder and Host of… PharmFresh.TV   Image Source:
  2. 2. Disclaimer•  The opinions and ideas expressed in this presentation are strictly my own and may not be screened by my employer.•  Everything mentioned or presented is strictly my personal opinion and does not necessarily represent the views of Vertex Pharmaceuticals. ! Image  by:  Monkey  Works  Illustra4on    
  3. 3. Regulated Industries Federal Regulations
  4. 4. Regulated Industries: Pharma Federal Regulations State Regulations Industry Guidelines
  5. 5. US Hospital Social Network List (by @EdBennett)  3,087 Hospital Social Networking Sites  906 Hospitals Total Hospital Social Networking Sites –  448 YouTube Channels Blogs; 3% YouTube –  719 Facebook Pages Four Square; 23% Channels; 15% –  674 Twitter Accounts –  439 LinkedIn Pages Facebook pages; 23% –  693 FourSquare –  106 Blogs LinkedIn Accounts; 14% Twitter Accounts; 22%Source:
  6. 6. YouTube
  7. 7. Facebook
  8. 8. Social Networks
  9. 9. Social Pharma: Twitter Accounts2008 JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC 3   @CellTherapeu.c   @Boehringer   @Novar.s  2009 JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC 31   @SanofiPasteur  @AstraZenecaUS   @JNJComm   @Novar.sTrials   @RaceWithInsulin   @ADHDSupport  (Shire)   @GenzymeCorp      (Novo  Nordisk)   @MediBiologics  (MedImmune)   @NovoNordisk_GA   @Roche_com   @AstraZenecaJobs   @MerrimackPharma   @SanofiUSVOICES   @AstraZeneca   @NVSOncoCareers   @AstellasUS   @Diabetes_sanofi   @BayerHealthcare   @ElanPLC   @BayerUSnews   @Amgen   @AmgenFounda.on   @Pfizer_news   @GenentechNews   @AZhelps   @GSKUS   @BoehringerUS   @SanofiAven.sTV   @BaxterCo   @PKUawareness  (BioMarin)   @LlyOncOnCanvas  2010 JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC 16   @BayerUKIreland   @BMSnews   @JNJhistory   @LilyPad   @JanssenUK   @BayerWED   @AlimeraSciences   @McNeilRecall   @Renalinfo  (Bayer)   @VertexPharma   @JoinAstraZeneca   @JNJstories   @JNJvideo     @Baxter_intl   @DendreonNews   @LundbeckInc   Resource: Dose of Digital “Wiki” --
  10. 10. Pharma Twitter Accounts:
  11. 11. Promotional Twitter Feed
  12. 12. Twitter for Support
  13. 13. #Rxsave TweetChat by @AstraZenecaUS Source:, via Pharma Marketing News, “OMG! AstraZeneca Hosts Twitter Chat & World Does NOT End!”, (
  14. 14. 10 Suggestions for Launching Social Media in aConservative Corporate Culture 14  
  15. 15. 1 Identify… Image from Flickr:
  16. 16. 1 Identify… Barriers to Entry Image from Flickr:
  17. 17. 1 Internal (Corporate) Barriers: Overview IT Corporate/   Marketing Enterprise   Executives Legal Regulatory/Safety Pharma/   Federal Regulations Regulated   (FDA, DDMAC, etc.) Industries  
  18. 18. 2 Engage/Educate Internal Stakeholders EARLY   Adapted from: “Engage: The Complete Guide for Brands and Businesses to Build, Cultivate, and Measure Success in the New Web” by Brian Solis (2010)
  19. 19. 2 Engage/Educate Internal Stakeholders EARLY  Engage with key internal stakeholders –  e.g. Legal, Regulatory, Compliance, Marketing, IT, etc.  Educate stakeholders on different platforms and applications BEFORE developing guidance/policy –  Demonstrate platform/channel –  Show examples of corporate utility (industry example or other corporate uses) –  Invite stakeholders to participate in early (internal) pilot programs –  Don’t just talk platform/technology ➝ Educate about approach and culture of social media as well  Consider “Concept Reviews”
  20. 20. 3 Develop Social Media Guidelines/Policy Image from Flickr:
  21. 21. 3 Develop Social Media Guidelines/Policy  Start with existing company “Code of Ethics” and/or “Internet and Email Policy” and build on it  Consider the following categories when developing a Social Media Guideline/Policy: INTERNAL EXTERNAL Internal Corporate External Corporate CORPORATE Communications Communications Internal Enterprise External Employee EMPLOYEE Collaboration EngagementResource:
  22. 22. 4 Develop an SOP (for Each Platform) Source: Larua Bergells, via,, February 2010.
  23. 23. 4 Develop an SOP (for Each Platform)   Determine an SOP for each platform/channel   Develop an escalation/response process for each strategyResources:––   Source: David Meerman Scott, WebInkNow Blog,, December 2008.
  24. 24. 5 Determine Objectives ➝ Strategy ➝ Tactics P People Assess your customers’ social activities O Objectives Decide what you want to accomplish S Strategy Plan for how relationships with customers will change T Technology Decide which social technologies to use Source: Charlene Li and Josh Bernoff, Groundswell: Winning in a World Transformed by Social Technologies, April 2008
  25. 25. 5 Determine Objectives ➝ Strategy ➝ Tactics Align strategies objectives and determine tactics Source: Sarah Larcker (Digitas Health), Digitas Health Social Media POV,, October 2009
  26. 26. 6 Assess Risk Tolerance and Work in “Comfort Zone” Source: Sarah Larcker (Digitas Health), Digitas Health Social Media POV,, October 2009
  27. 27. 7 Think Beyond Tactics and Launch   Objectives and Metrics –  Why you are using a specific platform and how you will measure its value   Risks and Mitigation –  How will we manage/contain risks to the corporation   Channel Proposition and Management –  How we will populate and use this channel   Promotional Plan –  How will we promote our presence on a particular platform and maximize value Resource:
  28. 28. 8 Be Willing to Compromise and Adapt   Limited resources or legal/ regulatory assessment may require a cautious approach, for example: -  Turn off commenting -  All posts must be reviewed before posting -  All responses must be reviewed or pre-approved   Work with stakeholders to adapt SOP to platform (e.g. 24hr review for responses)   Plan for regular reviews after initial launch ➝ Retrospective review of content/process   Be prepared to update policies/guidelines regularly   Learn and adapt accordingly
  29. 29. 9 Set Expectations eXplicitly Be transparent with policies and organization
  30. 30. 9 Set Expectations eXplicitly  Establish “rules of engagement” so audience will know your intentions, limitations, and what to expect from engagement –  All comments will be reviewed before posting –  Comments that don’t directly relate to the Company or to topics covered on this blog won’t be posted –  Some comments may be forwarded … for follow-up as appropriate –  We generally won’t post comments about products that are sold by the Johnson & Johnson operating companies –  Johnson & Johnson and its operating companies work within highly regulated industries. Comments that pertain to ongoing legal matters or regulatory issues are unlikely to be posted –  Further information about our policies…can be found in our Privacy and Legal Notice
  31. 31. 10 Evolve and Grow Work to change mindsets - From “No, because…” to “Yes, if…” Source: Monte Lutz (Edelman), The Social Pulpit,, February 2009
  32. 32. 10 Evolve and Grow Illustration by: David Armano, Logic+Emotion Blog (, July 2009
  33. 33. Twitter is a Petri DishA 2-Week Social Twexperiment
  34. 34. Two Week Twitter Trial  Premise: As an initial foray into social media and as a way to test the utility of micro-blogging for corporate use, launch a “trial run” of Twitter over a 2 week duration.  Find an Executive Sponsor: CFO? CMO? etc.  Launch with a Key Event/Milestone  Determine Authorized Tweeters  Tweet Review Process: –  All tweets to be pre-approved before publishing? –  Reviewers must include: Legal, Regulatory + relevant group? –  Turnaround time for approval within 24-48hrs?  Setup: –  Consider Tools/Apps: CoTweet, TwitPic, TweetDeck, –  Consider hashtag for event: e.g. #iStratSF –  Consider “Twexperiment Survey” at end of two week trial –  Consider external facing Twitter Guidelines (setting expectations)  Evaluate and decide whether to continue
  35. 35. Where Do We Start?
  36. 36. Why Twitter  Low(er) barriers to entry –  Low resource requirement for launching and managing –  Low/No cost of entry (most tools are free/cheap)  Lots of free tools/apps to support –  Including corporate oriented tools  Ease of review/approval for 140 characters  Ability to extend and grow –  Link to multiple content formats (e.g. images, video, etc) –  Supports and connects to other platforms in the future  Several good industry examples already established  Able to fulfill multiple objectives –  Listen, Engage, Energize, Support, Embrace
  37. 37. Internal Hurdles   What is the Value of Tweeting… –  When there is no product on the market?   Do we have the needed reources   No industry social media regulations/guidance   Overall skepticism of Twitter as “just another fad”   Approval process –  Who should be involved? –  How often do reviews need to take place? –  Should it go through the regular review process or create a separate process? –  How fast do we need to turn the review around? –  How do we route Q&A’s for specific questions (e.g. financial questions)?
  38. 38. Analysis of Tweets and Links to Press Releases Pfizer Novartis Genentech All press releases are tweeted  -  Press releases supplement additional news/    info Press releases start with “Company X issues - -  press release on…” or “Company X announces…” Re-written press release titles for Twitter  (+/-)   Links to other news/updates on company    website: e.g. Community, Events, Awards, etc. Links to external websites and resources: e.g. Foundations, Fundraisers, News articles, PDF’s, etc.    Twitter advertised on Company news/media - -  webpage Twitter guidelines/policy available - - -38
  39. 39. Analysis of Industry Practices #  of  Following   Number Following and Updates by PharmaCo 2000 1500 @Boehringer 1000 @JNJComm 500 Average  following:  392   @GSKUS @AstraZeneca @Roche_com @genentechnews @Amgen @Novartis 0 0 50 100 150 200 250 300 350 400 Average  Updates:  119   #  of  Updates   Data Source:, July 13th, 2009; whydotpharma analysis Bubble size = # of followers: 1,306 Source: @WhyDotPharma, Pharma twittersphere - To be followed or to follow?, WhyDotPharma Blog, July 14, 2009 (
  40. 40. Insight: What Do People Want From Pharma Tweets?   Which topics would you like pharmaceutical companies to cover more on Twitter? Source: @WhyDotPharma, The state of the pharma twittersphere, WhyDotPharma Blog, July 13, 2009 (
  41. 41. Develop a Planand Define Processes
  42. 42. Formalize Objectives   Extend reach of information that may be of interest to our audiences   Provide an informal “human” voice of the organization that listens and engages with audiences   Increase thought leadership position and credibility within industry and among stakeholders   Increase traffic to traditional online channels   Cover key events in new ways (e.g. via Live Tweeting)   Engage with Twitterverse / stakeholders
  43. 43. Educate Internal Stakeholders  Educate stakeholders on different platforms and applications BEFORE discussing guidance: –  Demonstrate platform/channel –  Show examples of corporate utility (industry examples) –  Educate about principles and culture of social media –  Try internal pilot for proof of concept ➝ invite stakeholders to participate Yammer SocialCast
  44. 44. Develop a Twitter SOP/Policy  Work with compliance to develop an SOP/policy that summarizes the plan, including: –  Scope •  What the SOP covers (corporate use vs. personal use) •  Who it is intended for (one department vs. entire company) –  Who has authority to tweet on behalf of company? –  What type of review is required for content before posting? –  How should SM content be considered vs. traditional forms of communication? •  Privacy, Frequency, Restrictions on responses, etc. –  Who should you follow? Should you be proactive or not? –  Can you link to other sites and re-tweet other posts? –  What is the Tweet-review process? •  Including escalation policy and response workflow/process
  45. 45. Strategies: Key Considerations  Overall Strategy –  Does this fit into the overall brand or corporate strategy/mission? –  Knowing my audience, what value can I bring to them?  Resources –  Who are the assigned resources for ensuring regular review and response to this initiative and for how long? –  Do we have a SOP and response plan in place for this?  Metrics and Analytics –  How do we measure and/or monitor the ongoing effect, overall impact, and success (ROI/ROO) for this program? –  Who is responsible for the data/information that is generated from this initiative? Who else needs to see it?  Upgrades and Termination –  Who is responsible for updates/upgrades to the project OR terminating project, if not updated.
  46. 46. Other Important Considerations  Internal communications –  Inform your employees before launching –  Let them know what the expectations are and what their role is (e.g. can they re-tweet corporate tweets?)  Management tools/apps –  Enterprise tweet management tool (e.g. Co-Tweet, HootSuite)? –  Images (e.g. TwitPic, Flickr), Video (e.g. TwitVid)? –  URL shortener (e.g., –  Analysis/Monitoring tools •  Paid: Radian6, Nielsen Buzzmetrics, Alterian SM2, •  Free: TweetDeck,, Twitalyzer, TweetStats, TwitterFriends, etc.  Think about key events/milestones for launching –  Plan for a specific date to launch (e.g. surrounding an event) –  Then plan 2 or 3 more dates following that  Consider how and when you will review progress with key stakeholders
  47. 47. Develop a Comprehensive Plan Strategic plan that includes: –  Background Info (on Twitter use in industry) –  Key Objectives –  Methods of Analysis –  Potential Issues and Mitigation –  Twitter Channel Logistics –  Resource Allocation –  Content: Frequency, Tone/Voice, Value, Retweets –  Content: Source and Types –  Implementation –  Promotion –  Plan for Execution
  48. 48. Tactical Considerations for Twitter  What name to use? –  Consider availability of username on other social platforms/sites –  Note: Some sites have a 5-6 character minimum for usernames  What avatar should you use? –  Corporate logo vs. someone’s face?  What should your profile bio state? –  What is your 140 character bio/profile? –  Where should it link to?  What background image should you use?  Should you have “tweet signatures” (e.g. ^SG)  Should all this be reviewed by MRC before going live?
  49. 49. Tactical Considerations for Twitter  How will you determine who to follow or not follow?  Responses (to @ Mentions and/or DM’s)? –  Will you proactively contact people? –  Will you respond to any mentions (e.g. filtered mentions)? –  How about erroneous facts/info? –  What if you get praise/thanks for something?  Review and approvals –  What is your tweet review/approval time frame and who needs to approve? –  Does EVERY tweet need to be approved first? –  Or can you have some freedom around “standard tweet” responses?  Med/Legal/Reg Issues –  What if you get questions about Medical, IR, press releases, etc? –  How will you handle “safety issues” and complaints/rants?
  50. 50. Tactical Considerations for Twitter  Process and Content –  Who will be allowed to tweet (designated twitterer)? –  What can employees do with corporate tweets? –  Will you “live tweet” from events? –  Will you link to press releases? –  How frequent will you tweet (set expectations)? –  What themes will you focus on (e.g. social causes, etc.)?  Outcomes and Measures –  What are your key objectives? –  How will you measure if Twitter helped to achieve them? –  How will you evaluate the value/type of followers? –  What will you do with the results to assess value? –  How will you evaluate the entire process with everyone involved – determine time, resources, process, expectations?
  51. 51. Get Ready…
  52. 52. Prepare to Launch…
  53. 53. But…
  54. 54. In Summary  Have patience, be collaborative, and don’t force things –  Not everyone is comfortable with social media tools, so patience is key to obtaining internal support  Set appropriate expectations internally and externally –  Consider external-facing guidelines  Be willing to compromise and adapt  Explicitly state “rules of engagement” so customers will understand  If unsure, experiment internally before moving externally –  Consider external experiment as well  Content is king, but context is critical –  Build strong internal relationships to find best stories and social media content
  55. 55. In closing…And  so  what  we  have  ended  up  doing  in  many  cases  is  take  some  small  steps  to  get  more  comfortable  with  ge>ng  involved.    We  are  also  making  sure  we  have  processes  in  place…and  that  we  have  responsible  people  involved  who  can  respond  quickly  to  quesCons.  At  the  same  Cme,  [  these  projects  ]  are  giving  us  some  great  experience   Marc Monseau (J&J) Source: Marc Monseau, JNJBTW Blog, October 2008
  56. 56. Thank YouEmail: Shwen@med20.comTwitter: @shwenBlog: www.med20.comNetwork: SocialPharmer.comUnconference: SXSH.orgVideo: PharmFresh.TV