ALEXANDRIA, Va. — The National Community Pharmacists Association on Tuesday extended its deal with RxWiki through 2021.
"With more and more patients seeking health care solutions online, it is critical for independent community pharmacies to have a solid digital presence and rethink how they communicate with patients," stated Douglas Hoey, CEO NCPA. "That's why we are proud to continue our work with RxWiki to help community pharmacies strengthen their digital presence and offer convenient patient services like a refill app. RxWiki already operates high-quality digital solutions for 1,400 pharmacy brands, and this new agreement secures our member benefits and places greater emphasis on training and education for community pharmacy owners, managers and staff."
The fact is, the majority of community pharmacists are using social media to stay connected with their patients and drive visits to their physical store. According to an RxWiki survey released earlier this year, 65% of community pharmacists use social media, with 63% using Facebook and 24% using Twitter. Usage of other networks like Instagram and Pinterest were low, at 12% and 2% respectively.
Over 68% of pharmacists reported that they felt that social media had a definite positive impact on their business by either helping them stay connected with their patients, delivering health news to them, or driving visits to the store.
"BY THE #s: 65% of community pharmacists use social media to stay connected with their patients and drive visits. ”Posting one or more times per week was most common, with the most popular content being health related information and general going-ons in the pharmacy. There was no consistency on the person responsible for managing the accounts. In some pharmacies, it was the pharmacist who managed the account while in other pharmacies, it was the owner, the staff or a business manager.
While “time” was the biggest reason why respondents don’t use social media, those that do are only spending a few minutes each day managing the accounts. Less than 20% said that a lack of understanding of the platforms was the reason they didn’t use the platforms, reflecting the broader trends of social media adoption amongst all age groups.
In addition to posting content, 23% of pharmacists are advertising on social media, especially using Facebook advertising. Budgets ranged from $10/month all the way to more than $100/month.
As part of the deal, NCPA members receive an annual digital health check and a royalty-free license to RxWiki's original pharmacist-written and verified content and a newsfeed to power pharmacy social media or email marketing programs.
Other services available on RxWiki's Digital Pharmacist platform will be provided a members-onlu discount.
"We are delighted to work with NCPA and have the opportunity to help community pharmacists stay connected with their patients in new and innovative ways," said Chris Loughlin, CEO of RxWiki. "Every day, hundreds of thousands of patients are engaging with their community pharmacy via the mobile apps, websites, e-newsletters, and social media programs we develop. Our new products, such as adherence alerts and patient reviews, are driving adherence and giving pharmacists valuable patient feedback."