Social Media for Pharma C-Suite Dummies The Need for Social Media TrainingClick Here for Additional Resources

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Less than a third of companies today use social media to support their corporate strategy and risk management practices, according to research conducted in 2012 by Stanford University’s Rock Center for Corporate Governance, the Center for Leadership Development and Research at the Stanford Graduate School of Business, and The Conference Board.

In the report titled “What Do Corporate Directors and Senior Managers Know about Social Media?” the authors detail the results of a survey of more than 180 senior executives and corporate directors of North American public and private companies. The findings reveal a disconnect between companies’ understanding of social media and the actions they are taking to apply it to their business.

Key findings include:

  • While 90% of respondents claim to understand the impact that social media can have on their organization, only 32% of their companies monitor social media to detect risks to their business activities and 14% use metrics from social media to measure corporate performance.
  • Only 24% of senior managers and 8% of directors surveyed receive reports containing summary information and metrics from social media. Approximately half of the companies do not collect this information at all.
  • Nearly two-thirds of respondents (65%) use social media for personal purposes, and 63% for business purposes. Of those who use social media, 80% have a LinkedIn account and 68% have a Facebook account, demonstrating that executives and board members are familiar with this medium.

Senior Execs and Social Media

Still, only 59% of companies in the survey use social media to interact with customers, 49% to advertise, and 35% to research customers. Approximately 30% use social media to research competitors, research new products and services, or communicate with employees and other stakeholders.

Questions/Topics Discussed

  • Why should senior management get social media training?
  • What should training incorporate?
  • How should they learn about social media?
  • When should they learn?

Guest Bio

Alexandra FulfordAlexandra Fulford (@pharmaguapa on Twitter) is an independent strategy consultant specialised in digital media and social media, in the pharmaceutical industry.

Alexandra has extensive experience in working with top pharmaceutical companies such as Roche, Novartis, Novo Nordisk, Merck Serono, Sanofi and Astra Zeneca, as well as firms such as McKinsey and Digitas Health. Projects have included digital strategy development and implementation; social media strategy, implementation and guideline development; developing and running digital and social media training programmes and workshops; developing cross-functional and global to local digital implementation processes and strategies.

Alexandra has a passion for pharmaceutical digital strategy and marketing and is particularly interested in how the industry can make use of new digital technology and social media.

She speaks fluent English, French, German and Spanish and basic Mandarin.

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