Raise your right hand and repeat after me:
I (Insert name here of pharmaceutical marketing executive) do solemnly swear to focus on the patient first in all my social media efforts.
All key stakeholders across the company regardless of department will be involved from the onset of a social media engagement (yes this means legal, regulatory and IT).
I promise to spend time listening to the social media communities I intend to engage with before I make assumptions on what they want. I will commit to always representing myself and my company in an ethical, authentic and honest manner.
When offering content or having discussions on social media platforms, I will not resort to promotional messages and will instead aim to offer educational and helpful resources. I will not merely use social media as a megaphone to shout messages to the masses. Rather, I will seek to engage in a dialogue on a one-to-one basis whenever possible.
I will expect a crisis to occur and when it does, I will avoid knee-jerk reactions such as shutting down all social media channels. There will be a crisis communications plan in place even when regulations limit what I can say. I will let patients know that they have been heard and offer alternative ways to get information.
When I receive criticism via social media they will not be discarded as some rogue, disgruntled individual. They will be considered carefully and remediation will be taken when warranted.
I will insist on social media measurement but not blindly demand ROI without a true understanding of what ROI is—a lagging indicator. When I measure social media, it will be with a more sophisticated set of metrics tied directly back to my original strategy (see sentence two).
Above all else, I will make helping the patient my central goal and will walk away entirely if that ever changes.