Takeaways from the 2020 Socialbakers Health and Social Media Report – News – MM+M

Not surprisingly, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Facebook page saw a huge surge in subscribers in March and April 2020, as more and more people flocked to the social media pages to learn about the pandemic.

It turns out that the increase in subscriber numbers and social media usage also happened across the board among pharma brands in 2020. It was a year that created a paradigm shift in the how healthcare brands communicate through these platforms, according to a new report on social media marketing partner Socialbakers.

The report tracked how biopharmaceutical and health tech brands used social media during the pandemic – and how it could impact healthcare communications in the future. Here are the top five takeaways from the results.

2020 has been a ‘catalyst’ for increased investment in social media

A key driver of the rise in social media among biopharmaceutical brands has been the strong engagement around vaccine development news, which has garnered great public interest. Once brands saw that this avenue could generate a lot of interest and engagement, it encouraged them to invest more money and effort into designing stronger social media campaigns.

“Looking at the results, it’s clear that this is an absolutely unprecedented year,” said Chushi Li, content marketer at Socialbakers who worked on the report. “The bottom line is that you can look to this year as a catalyst for increased investment on the end of biopharmaceutical brands and their social media and efforts to connect with the public.”

Negative Sentiment Dropped 10% for Biopharma Brands

Previous data showed that the once negative reputation of the pharmaceutical industry shifted to a more positive reputation in 2020, as more people began to perceive the industry as ‘problem solvers’ during the crisis. of COVID-19.

This latest report echoes that data, finding that social media comments on biopharmaceutical pages expressing negative sentiment fell 10% in 2020 compared to 2019.

Better quality social media content

Li notes that along with improved brand reputations, as well as increased social media funding and investment, overall content has proven to be of higher quality than in previous years.

“There have been very demanding social media campaigns and content strategies that, compared to the top posts of 2019 and 2018, the difference is really, really noticeable,” Li said. automated sharing of news articles – now you see really thoughtful and more demanding content being published on their pages.”

The spotlight was on Twitter and Facebook

Twitter and Facebook topped the social media platforms that saw massive growth in the use of biopharmaceutical brands in 2020, whether due to an increase in posts or engagement.

Facebook posts and interactions doubled for biopharma in 2020 compared to 2019, according to the report. Pfizer had the most total interactions on its Facebook page, followed by GSK, Johnson & Johnson and Bristol Myers Squibb.

Meanwhile, the total number of interactions on Twitter for biopharmaceutical brands increased by 255% in 2020 compared to previous years, from 233,000 total interactions in 2019 to 827,000 in 2020. The growth in the number of followers on biopharma Twitter pages was also remarkable, with the average page gaining over 30,000 followers in 2020 compared to just 9,500 followers in 2019.

The report also compared the top three performing tweets from 2020 to 2019. As you might expect, the top three performing tweets in 2020 were related to the COVID-19 vaccine – and had interactions 20 times greater than those of 2019.

The report’s findings have implications for how biopharmaceutical brands will use social media in the future to improve communication with consumers. Interestingly, even brands that had nothing to do with developing or testing COVID-19 vaccines saw significant growth when it came to social media.

That’s because biopharmaceutical brands in general have started to “make more of an effort to connect with the general population, to be more human, to improve their brand and brand perception,” Li said. vaccines invested even more money in social media last year, and metrics show it paid off, with the percentage of posts promoted even for small businesses driving their rapid growth.

“Once [brands] seeing the results they can get in terms of reach and engagement, it’s triggered a snowball effect,” Li said.