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inVentiv buys Kazaam to boost digital commercial services

By Natalie Morrison , 07-Jun-2012

inVentiv Health will expand its digital and social media commercial services following the takeover of Kazaam Interactive.

The firm said that, with all stakeholders becoming more “tech savvy”, the move was a reaction to a growing need for digital marketing in the drug industry.

inVentiv can now offer a host of in-house digital services – including information architecture, user experience design, website development and hosting, content management systems and mobile and smart phone application development – which it says it might have previously outsourced.

Robert Chandler, senior VP of marketing communications, told Outsourcing-Pharma.com because the area is still very new, playing by the rules of digital communications is a minefield if you don’t have a solid understanding of the system.

“Digital communications and the use of technology in highly regulated industries, such as health, require greater-than-average understanding,” he said. “There are strict rules governing what you can say and there’s no room to learn on the job.”

“So any digital agency we acquired had to have both strong technological credentials and deep experience in healthcare. There are very few agencies that combine both, but Kazaam is one of them.”

The digital revolution

According to Chandler, it is a certainty that we will see a lot more firms moving into the realms of digital commercial services.

“Health and wellness companies, including many of our clients, recognize that we’re in the midst of a revolution in healthcare marketing spurred by changing consumer expectations and fueled by technology,” he said.

He cited a recent study by Cutting Edge Information, in which the market researcher noted a healthy growth in digital marketing for the pharma industry.

The study, titled ‘Launching Pharmaceutical Brands: Formulas for Commercialization Success,’ looked at a 15 major pharmaceutical brands and found they had spent an average of $150,000 (€119,000) on digital marketing per molecule during Phase III development.

The analysts predicted this figure will grow in 2012.

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