The pharmaceutical industry is warming up to direct-to-consumer advertising on YouTube, but Google, which acquired the media channel in 2006, would like drug companies to get a lot warmer. At the Eye for Pharma conference this week, David Blair, the head of industry for health at Google, peppered listeners with some fun, startling facts about YouTube’s audience and why they should make it a higher priority in their marketing plan.
Pharma scaled way back on direct-to-consumer ad spend on the Internet last year, according to a report by Medical Marketing and Media. Of the $3.8 billion the sector spent on DtC ads, Internet advertising went down more than 14 percent over 2012 to $60 million — second only to newspaper’s decline of 28 percent. TV DtC ad spend soared 12.7 percent to more than $2.48 billion.
Blair heads up a digital marketing team that works with clients on marketing solutions across Google’s search, display, YouTube, mobile and social platforms. He made a pretty convincing case why pharma should focus less on TV and more on the Web.