A conversation with Bob Harrell, VP of Marketing at Appature (see Bio). Bob discusses the transformation currently underway in the pharma commercial model, as well as his company's "surprisingly simple" cloud-based marketing software platform for pharma and medical device companies.
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Pixels and Pills Interview with Kabir Shahani, CEO, Appature (July 2011):
As the average pharma sales rep spends less time with physicians, healthcare marketers are becoming more pressured to seek other ways to drive effective marketing programs. Appature's CEO, Kabir Shahani sees this as an immense opportunity to use the vast amount of data available to healthcare marketers coupled with relationship marketing technology to discover new methods to digitally personalize the healthcare professional experience.
Appature Nexus is a cloud-based relationship marketing tool designed to meet the specific needs of marketing professionals in the healthcare industry. Appature Nexus is unique for software-as-a-service applications in that it is designed with the stringent security and data storage requirements of the healthcare industry in mind. Each installation of Appature Nexus resides in its own isolated data cluster providing physical separation of data, protected storage, reliable data redundancy, and full 128-bit encryption for all data transmitted over the wire. Appature Nexus installations are housed in a SAS 70 Type II certified state-of-the-art co-location facility with biometric security and video-camera surveillance. Located on a major Internet backbone, rapid response times and high availability are of important consideration to both Appature and to our customers.
What are the major changes you see happening in the industry right now with regard to physician promotion?
What gaps currently exist in pharma marketing teams or capabilities that may create risk in addressing the new commercial model?
Why have marketing organizations been slow to change over the past several years as the commercial model has been shifting around them?
What does it mean to be an "informed marketer"?
Why is marketing technology critical to achieving the next stage of evolution for pharma brand managers?
Bob Harrell, VP of Marketing for Appature, Inc., is responsible for leading Appature's marketing to pharmaceutical and medical device companies, including online and non-personal marketing efforts, sales enablement and thought leadership initiatives. Bob's more 20 years in the pharmaceutical industry began in hospital sales for Merck, followed by field sales for Astra Merck. He then assumed a variety of headquarters positions at Astra Merck and AstraZeneca, including Product Communications Manager, Director of Field Communications, and Director of Strategic Communications.
Next, Bob served as a Group Account Director for SimStar (now part of Rosetta Marketing), a Princeton-based RM/digital marketing agency, overseeing digital marketing programs for clients such as Novartis, Roche, and Sanofi. He then spent two years in Prague, Czech Republic, leading Marketing for an B2C eBusiness startup. Prior to joining Appature, Bob was Director of Integrated Marketing for Shire Pharmaceuticals, where he led digital, database and relationship marketing to maximize value of Shire brands.
Bob attended Duke University where he graduated Magna Cum Laude with a degree in Public Policy.