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TeleManager product allows refills through Facebook

BY Alaric DeArment

NEWARK, N.J. — A company that develops cloud-based pharmacy automation and communications products has released a way for patients to refill their prescriptions on Facebook.

TeleManager announced the release of iRefill Facebook, the newest component of its iRefill Connect suite of products. Other components include iRefill Mobile, which allows two-way communication between patients and their pharmacists.

"Pharmacy patients desire more and more options and flexibility when communicating with their pharmacies," TeleManager Technologies VP and COO Paul Kobylevsky said. "The iRefill Connect Suite’s approach not only meets these patient demands, but also does so in a way that makes the solutions efficient, effective and affordable for pharmacies of all types and sizes."


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P&G names artist Janelle Monae as newest CoverGirl

BY Antoinette Alexander

HUNT VALLEY, Md. — Procter & Gamble’s CoverGirl brand has tapped singer and songwriter Janelle Monáe to be its newest CoverGirl.

The artist, once called a “different kind of diva” by Vogue, just wrapped her first CoverGirl advertising shoot, which is scheduled to debut in the September issue of that publication next week.

“Ever since Janelle made her electrifying arrival on the music scene, she has captured our imaginations, stirred our souls, and made us all move our feet,” said Esi Eggleston Bracey, VP and GM of CoverGirl Cosmetics. “Janelle is a true force of energy and a beautiful spirit who truly delights in her creative journey, not just the destination. We’re elated and can’t wait to show the world another dimension of her artistic ‘superpowers’ as a member of our CoverGirl family.”

Since its introduction in 1961, the cosmetic brand has been a beauty industry leader in providing women with the makeup tools to rock their everyday cover moments. The long list of CoverGirls has included Christie Brinkley, Cheryl Tiegs, Rachel Hunter, Tyra Banks, Niki Taylor and Molly Sims. The current roster of CoverGirls includes such icons as P!nk, Sofia Vergara, Queen Latifah, Drew Barrymore, Ellen DeGeneres, Taylor Swift and Mary Spencer, Canadian 2012 Olympian (women’s boxing).

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Better BTS promotions offered by retailers this year, PriceGrabber survey finds

BY Allison Cerra

LOS ANGELES — Nearly half of consumers polled in the latest PriceGrabber survey said that retailers are serving up better back-to-school promotions this year, compared with 2011.

Polling responses from 2,745 U.S. online shopping consumers — with 1,000 of the respondents planning to shop this back-to-school season — PriceGrabber said that while 48% agreed that this year’s promotions are better than last year’s, 88% of consumers chose "sales" as the top retailer promotion that will entice them to make a back-to-school purchase this year; 39% of shoppers cited coupons; 44% noted that "free items with purchase" would persuade them to buy; and 34% selected sales available online only. The best deals are being offered on school supplies (67%), clothing (58%), electronics (i.e., computers, tablets and smartphones) ranked third at 32%, tote bags (30%) and books (15%).

Where are consumers scoring the best deals? PriceGrabber found at one-third (34%) said the best back-to-school deals are online, 22% cited brick-and-mortar stores and 44% said they found the deals to be the same. When asked how they plan to purchase back-to-school items this year, 60% of consumers said in stores and 40% selected online.

"The start of the back-to-school shopping season has been very competitive with retailers offering aggressive promotions to win the consumer dollar," PriceGrabber general manager Graham Jones said. "We anticipate retailers will continue to offer very strong promotions and incentives through the remainder of August and even into September as kids start the school year."

Additional findings included:

  • 67% selected large, multichannel department stores as the type of stores they plan to shop at for back-to-school items, followed by online retailers;

  • 54% of respondents said they plan to shop at discount retail outlet stores; and

  • One-quarter of survey respondents said they have been lured into brick-and-mortar stores due to back-to-school sales and promotions for items under $1. Of those respondents, 48% said that once they got into the store they also purchased additional back-to-school items that were not on sale.

"Shoppers continue to look for the best deals and ways to get the most value from every dollar they spend on back-to-school items," Jones said. "Retailers with aggressive online and in store promotions in August will be better positioned to capture sales during this shopping season."

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