pharmaceuticalIt makes sense, doesn’t it? As consumers we are no longer just interested in what we are buying, we’re also paying more attention to who we are buying it from – we seek out fair trade coffee and now, we want to know who is developing the medications we take. The pharma industry has always been one step removed from the customer due to strict marketing regulations, but now patients are showing more appetite to understand and interact with drug companies. 1 in 3 online consumers (36 percent) are interested in receiving customer service from the pharmaceutical industry. According to health economist and management consultant Jane Sarasohn-Kahn, customers want to learn about prescription drugs “right from the source.”

This presents a golden opportunity for pharma companies to cast off the shackles of a faceless corporation and develop relationships with the customers who use their products.  It’s a chance to dispel some of the myths and help customers.  Pharma companies are grabbing that chance by offering more channels to contact customers and promoting these channels proactively through their websites and social media.

But there are dangers here.  Pharma can only improve its relationship with patients if the interactions it offers are good experiences.  History is also in some ways a handicap – they have little to no experience in dealing with a high-volume of consumer interactions. As the amount of engaged patients increases, how can pharma companies provide an experience that actually improves their standing with consumers?

The Power of Interactive Voice Response

Intelligent voice solutions can facilitate a dynamic interaction with the caller, empowering customers to resolve inquiries quickly and easily. Cloud-based Interactive Voice Response (IVR) solutions can also be integrated via a secure web connection to any backend system (e.g. CRM, databases, web services) for real-time personalization of the caller experience and data capture of information such as patient history and preferences.

Patients are now seeking out convenient and quick information for new and existing drugs and prescriptions, and they are coming to the horse’s mouth for the answers.  It’s imperative to make sure they can get that information in a convenient, personalized way.

To find out more about how pharmaceutical companies can deliver an experience that works for the patient, read our pharmaceutical industry brief.