Notes from Digital Health Coalition Summit

Michael Ackerman was representing Silverlight Digital at this week’s Digital Health Coalition Summit in New Jersey. If you were unable to attend – no worries, Michael’s got you covered as usual with musings, notes and things overheard at the event:


  • Patient adherence can play a roll ($300 billion in lost business a year)
  • Need to embrace post hospital – 2-way communications functionality – set-up mobile auto-enrollment while in hospital
  • Patients comfortable communicating via virtual assistant chatbot
  • Collect real-world data from patients – help care team, summaries for the patient, insights for marketing

The Physician’s Landscape

  • Doctors swamped w info – Medical knowledge doubles every 3.5 years
  • 1M members; 30M articles read
  • Ad frequency is important to reach busy docs
  • Doctor retention for native ads 4K times more than retention for banners
  • Video retention also much higher than banners
  • Doctor colleagues are most impactful for influencing

Challenge with Targeting Doctors

  • Docs have lots of different digital identities – iPad, phone, have various desktop browsers – Meaning it’s not as simple as Loading NP list into DNP/DSP –
  • Overcome challenges by reaching doctors when surfing outside pharma


  • TV makes sense when there’s mass awareness for a product launch but over 50% tune-out commercials
  • Pharma still advocating 60%+ of budgets towards TV
  • Social can play a roll – create awareness of TV ad buys


  • 4 in 10 are visiting Urgent Care vs. doctors/hospitals – 55% do so because of convenience, however, 85% believe docs/specialists provide better quality care
  • Baby boomers trust docs much more – also more likely to use EMR portal to get advice
  • 50% patients Google health problems vs. seeing a doctor

Video Techniques to Enhance Your Message

  • Developing effective digital content has been their hardest digital obstacle – Pharma is too self-centered, heavy text, not engaging
  • We all learn A LOT more visually
  • Video has 300% greater engagement than text
  • 80% consumers recall videos; 46% take action
  • Huge advocate of patient story videos – Using actual patients vs. actors, not glossy, share both good and bad.  Need to be patient – It takes a long time to find the right spokesperson
  • Doesn’t know why pharma co’s still spend money on HCP print collateral (Doc don’t read)

Social Media

  • Facebook after Cambridge Analytica – stock price recovered after 2 months, plus still growing outside NA
  • FB interest targeting has been cut back but there’s affiliated interests, life event targeting, lookalike audience and can send custom audience
  • Social benchmarks (from Unmetric) – 25% of pharma have FB unbranded sites, less than 1% are branded. 1/3 of branded sites have comments.
  • FB posts per week – branded (comments) is 1.1, branded (no comments) is .5, unbranded represents 1.9
  • FB average comments – 108 comments per week for unbranded; 25 for branded
  • Twitter – mostly for corporate news
  • YouTube – unbranded dominates

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