Digital Transformation

Dreamforce: Social Media in Regulated Industries

We had a panel discussion today on the use of Social Media in Regulated Industries.  We focused on Healthcare and Life Sciences, but the same info applies across the industry landscape.  In regulated industries, social media is especially scary because conversations can be negative, can involve complex subjects and can involve regulatory compliance issues.  For example, if you are a pharmaceutical and you blog about a product, the FDA might need to approve your content.  If a patient talks about an adverse reaction, there are legal and compliance reporting issues that must be addressed.

The Dreamforce panel talked about the following challenges and how they addressed the Roadmap – how do you plan the journey into social media and how fast can you go from startup to fully engaged?

  • One panelist spent time on psychographics on patients to create segments involved in Social Media;  two segments stood out at first:
    • New Moms
    • Tweet in exam room
  • All panelists started with a lot of listening –  they called this the “Crawling” stage
  • Next they evolved into the “Walking” stage and started posting on Facebook about events
  • Some grew from there by “jogging” –  they did a campaign using patient stories: What’s Your Word – a cancer patient campaign – “Jog”
  • Its a long way to go to get fully engaged and you must be aware of legal and compliance issues along the way
  • When to move between Crawl, Walk, Run sometimes involves different leadership and can change depending on circumstances of your institution
  • One panelist used Trust Agents – people trusted to engage on social media to handle criticism or promote messaging.  Use Radian 6 workflow to assign conversations to the Trust Agent
  • Listening has helped learn and validate what they thought
  • Monitor conversations to make everyone more comfortable to move on

In the area of Legal and Compliance –what are the top challenges?  The panelists came up with the following thoughts:

  • Engage the legal and compliance team early.  They need to understand how they are engaged – they are there only to make sure you don’t mess up, not to figure out how to manage converstions
  • There are things you just can’t do, there are things you can do, but maybe don’t want to.  Involve Legal and Compliance to figure these out.
  • There are lots of things you can do and you don’t need legal/compliance here.
  • Radian 6 helped with the conversation with Legal.  Sentiment analysis showed that most of the conversation was neutral.

Overall this was a good session and gave the audience some insight into how these companies dealt with social media in these regulated industries.

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Mark Polly

Mark Polly is Perficient's Chief Strategist for Customer Experience Platforms. He works to create great customer, partner, and employee experiences. Mark specializes in web content management, portal, search, CRM, marketing automation, customer service, collaboration, social networks, and more.

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