What do physicians really think about pharma’s digital marketing efforts?

Topic: Healthcare   |   11 April 2023

What do physicians really think about pharma’s digital marketing efforts?

With all the investment being directed towards digital marketing it is more important than ever for pharmaceutical companies to stay informed about how physicians react and respond to their campaigns. However, gaining real insight into this can be tricky, and there are so many uncertainties as to whether what’s being put out is having any measurable effect. 

From research conducted by Bryter, we know that physicians often feel dissatisfied with digital marketing efforts. But what are the most common complaints?


Physicians can face data overload when bombarded with emails, text messages, webcasts, and other forms of digital engagement through which pharma companies try to reach them. The result is that physicians sometimes perceive digital engagement with pharma as bothersome and intrusive.

Many are frustrated with the number of digital marketing emails they receive from these companies. Despite potential benefits such as convenience and speed, many physicians simply do not have the bandwidth to review, evaluate, or respond to all this digital information, making them dislike its presence in their day-to-day work life.

Biased and require interpretation 

Some physicians find that inaccurate information can be a common occurrence in digital marketing campaigns, wasting both the physician's time and energy for researching and fact-checking. Due to the number of campaigns coming through, doctors are presented with information on competing products with varying degrees of evidence supporting their effectiveness. This can create an unnecessary burden when navigating through digital communications and finding medical information that is unbiased and relevant.

Hard to find

One of the advantages of so much content being available digitally is that physicians have the world at their fingertips. However, sifting through all the content available takes time, and they can often miss important updates in their disease areas or changes in guidelines. Although they can find this information, they are time-poor and don’t have the bandwidth to invest in looking for this information, which means it can be left unseen. 

As we can see, there is a contradiction in how physicians feel about digital content. They don’t always have the time or inclination to look for on-demand content themselves, but they can be overwhelmed when pharma companies deliver information to their inbox. 

So, what do physicians value in digital communication?

At Bryter, we use innovative methods to assess physician needs. Rather than directly asking them what they need or how satisfied they are, we analyse the underlying factors driving their satisfaction with a particular brand’s efforts. 

In this way, we learn how to design content that physicians will appreciate and value.

Recent research by Bryter reveals the key factors driving satisfaction with digital content, using haem-oncology as an example disease area.

Factors Driving Satisfaction With Digital Content


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