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With over 700,000 users, DocCheck® is one of the most heavily subscribed medical portals in the world. Around 8,000 new DocCheck users register each month. While growth was primarily concentrated in Europe up to 2006, the number of users outside the EU has increased disproportionately in recent months. Already one in two physicians in Germany, where the community was first introduced, is a member of DocCheck.
The goal of the present study was to depict the usage of social media (online networks) within the target group of physicians. The influence and importance of social media as a modern channel of communication is growing constantly, also in the pharmaceutical sector. To date, there has been study that focuses on the usage behavior of physicians in social media. The present study aims at contributing to knowledge in this field.
The study at hand differentiated between different target groups. The main focus lays on users of social media, who both read and post medical information on networks. We were also interested in users who read only but do not post on medical networks and users who post only, but only on non-medical networks.
Specifically, the following data were assessed: type of networks used, the frequency of posting, motivation of posting, estimation of network usage through colleagues, relevance of contents posted and an estimation of online user-generated content in the future.
Dr. Frank Antwerpes
The DocCheck® Medical Services Chief Executive Officer is a physician and dentist, who also worked as a freelance copywriter and conceptor for advertising agencies and industrial enterprises during his studies.
In 1996 he had the idea to provide an online community for healthcare professionals. The DocCheck® Medical Services GmbH was founded in 1999 after the community starts to getting bigger and the services were enlarged.
With more than 500,000 users worldwide today, the simple idea of a place their healthcare professionals can come together turned out to be a huge success - for DocCheck® and their users.