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Keeping on the cutting edge of Pharmaceutical webcasting

Keeping on the cutting edge of Pharmaceutical webcasting


As both social media and webcasting continue to evolve at a rapid rate the pharmaceutical sector continues to innovate and evolve the ways in which it communicates to diverse and geographically spread audiences.
Last Updated: 24-May-2012

As both social media and webcasting continue to evolve at a rapid rate the pharmaceutical sector continues to innovate and evolve the ways in which it communicates to diverse and geographically spread audiences. In such an ever changing environment it is difficult to keep on top of what ‘best practice’ actually is, and how new technologies can enable more engaging conversations with stakeholders.

The webcast has now become a standard part of the toolkit for communications teams to create connections between Key Opinion Leaders (KOLs), stakeholders and journalists. However with the continued growth of social media and mobile devices it is becoming more and more important to accommodate the viewer so they are able to watch and interact with content as and when they want to. This inevitably leads to developing different versions of the content to suit viewers’ different requirements.

Historically there has been a push to stream all webcasts live so that audiences can receive the information in a timely fashion. However this is not without risk and expense. We believe that there is actually little value in streaming live unless you make the webcast truly interactive. The alternative is to capture it ‘as live’ and make the webcast available shortly after the end of the event. This can reduce both risk and cost, which it always an important consideration for those taking their first steps with this approach.

To make a webcast stickier and create a truly appointment to view content the live interactive elements are fundamental. The basic building blocks for making a dynamic interactive webcast take a number of forms from live polling of the audience, which is a rich source of important stakeholder information, to questions submitted live and fielded by the participants.

With the growing diversity of communication platforms and new devices there is now an opportunity to make these webcasts even more dynamic. Part of this is in enabling the viewer to watch and individually interact with the content wherever they are on their mobile device or even sitting in a room with colleagues.

In terms of making the webcast even more dynamic this can mean webcasting directly into social media platforms, taking questions from Facebook or Twitter, or even using polling results from the audience to dynamically change the content of the programme while live. For example if the webcast is covering three topics ask the audience via a poll which is the most important. Allocate time on the webcast to the three areas of discussion based on how important they are to the audience.

For Pharmaceutical press webcasts this ensures the focus is on the exact areas of interest of those journalists watching helping to garner more coverage.

In terms of reach further value can be added by making the webcast multi-language. This is particularly relevant when it comes to Pharmaceutical webcasts as these tend to contain information which is relevant to stakeholders in multiple territories.

Additional languages can be delivered relatively easily with on-demand content via subtitling, but with longer programmes turnaround time can be an issue. However the real value is being able to do this live, with the same interactive elements available in a single language webcast.

This workflow is however complex, as live dubbing not only has to be supplied for each individual language but there also needs to be a clear workflow for the translation of incoming questions and comments into the default language of the broadcast. Of course multi-language pages and slides must also be included in the development.

In some case clients may wish to keep the site in the main language and simply translate the webcast and accompanying slides into the native language. Although this is still reasonably effective to fully leverage the multi-language webcasting you need to have an end to end solution which is able to present the whole experience in different languages.

The results when using this solution with the right target audiences are impressive expanding the reach of the webcast by many times, making the additional language approach highly cost effective.

With an every changing technical landscape it is more important than ever to understand your audiences’ expectations when it comes to online delivery. By utilising the right tools you are able to deliver an experience which surpasses their expectations in terms of both ease of access and level of interactivity.