Presentation: Leverage Social Media to Grow Retail Pharmacy Market

AUGUST 25, 2018
Gina Kokosky
The digital era has generated a concern for the future of retail pharmacists. With smart phones that place any product a consumer could possibly want at their fingertips, and e-commerce giant Amazon’s recent purchase of PillPack, some pharmacists are concerned about what the future of pharmacy looks like.

Digital media may actually help drive retail performance, however, according to Facebook Client Partner, Aaron Calloway, MBA, who gave a presentation today about his company’s marketing tools and retail opportunites at the National Association of Chain Drug Stores-Total Store Expo NACDS-TSE 2018 in Denver, Colorado. 

In his presentation, titled The Future is Mobile: How to Leverage Digital Assets to Drive Performance, he explained that digital media may provide retail businesses the opportunity to authentically advertise their brand, draw in relevant clients, engage with their audience and grow their market, all while reducing the cost of advertising.  

Calloway noted a shift in consumer behavior over the past decade, driven by the ever-expanding space of digital media platforms. Facebook has 2 billion monthly users, while Instagram and Facebook Messenger have 1 billion monthly viewers, respectively. An ever-increasing array of social media tools have created a shift from previous behaviors, such as reading newspapers and magazines to consuming digital media ads, online video content, and directly engaging with a brand, he explained. 

As 50 cents of from every dollar spent in-store is influenced by digital media, utilizing digital media resources can make a significant impact on in-store sales,. Calloway noted. He added that  the average Facebook user spends 6 hours a day on their digital devices, giving Facebook plenty of time to aggregate data about users and determine what products they’re interested in in seeing on their feed. This not only helps meet the needs of Facebook users, but also creates personalized and product specific audiences for retail. 

“We have the likes and interests from all your customers on, and off, of Facebook. We get all of these signals,” said Calloway. “We can use all of that data, and we know who you want as a client to reach as an audience, and we can help you find those exact people who shop at CVS, or Walgreens, or Kroger, or any of the other retail pharmacies.” 

Calloway stressed the importance of video in growing the retail pharmacy market. Due to high speed of scrolling on digital devices, advertisers need to create ‘thumbstopping’ content—content that makes the audience stay longer. Video has the ability to captivate audiences longer than photo or word heavy content and give the audience a stronger idea of who the brand is, according to the presentation. 

Moving forward, Facebook plans on continuing to help retail businesses grow their market with advanced features through messenger. Calloway encouraged retailers to invest in messenger, as it attracts more than 1.3 billion users, and 53% of consumers are more likely to engage with companies they can message directly. 

“We are still innovating and launching more products. Messenger is a great platform that’s underutilized right now,” said Calloway. “When you think about people, when you think about brands…being able to have instant, direct, and personal access is a great way that people actually engage with a business.” 
 

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