The Bracken Blog 

What's Broken with Traditional Biopharma Marketing

A Hand-Curated Bundle of Goodness


Traditional biopharma marketing includes the following activities:

  1. Attending conferences and trade shows

  2. Creating printed marketing literature

  3. Advertising in industry journals and magazines

  4. In-person presentations

Here are the problems with relying on these 4 activities to provide the majority of your marketing results.


It’s Not Enough

We’re not recommending that you entirely stop the above programs if they work for your team. But in-between the trade shows and passive advertising impressions, what’s out there to drive interactions with your brand?

A digital marketing program provides content that will be in front of your target marketing at regular intervals, and show up at vital times of their research process for solutions.

Digital marketing content can be hyperlinked to, or attached in an email, giving you a reason to drive a follow-up conversation.

Followups that read “Great connecting with you. Let me know if you have any questions.” are not enough. Waiting for a prospect to reach out when they have questions, or to run into you at the next event, is not enough.


It Can’t Be Easily Measured

John Wanamaker, an iconic American business man and political figure around the turn of the 21st century said:

“Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don’t know which half”.

In the previous section of this ebook, we talked about why the measurability of digital marketing provides such an advantage. With all the data of digital marketing at your fingertips, you are able to understand which pieces of your strategy are actually driving results, and which are inefficiently using up budget.

With traditional biopharma marketing activities, measuring isn’t easy. Budget gets wasted, confidence in decision making is lacking, and sometimes what drives the most results gets ignored because it's not understood.


It’s Not Scalable or Compoundable

The problem with conferences and in-person presentations is you personally need to be there every time. If you give a great lecture, the only audience is the attendees of the event.

Digital marketing produces content that can generate traffic to your website and leads to your sales team for the rest of time.

Content can be used over and over again in emails to address frequent challenges, questions and sales objections.

With the examples in the previous section of social media and search engine traffic, we established that the success of content production compounds on itself over time.

Increasing success with traditional biopharma marketing activities require proportional increases in time and money. Digital marketing creates an engine that can over time produce greater results, without needed proportionally greater inputs.



  • Digital marketing provides biopharma teams with the ability to drive brand interactions around the clock, and at meaningful times of the research process.

  • Traditional biopharma marketing uses a system where success and inefficiency are difficult to track. Therefore confidence in decision making is lacking.

  • Increasing success with traditional biopharma marketing tactics requires increasing amounts of time and money.


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