Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to explore how a web‐enabled product ID system can be applied to pharmaceutical marketing and consumer relationship management. Design/methodology/approach – As a technical paper, it first introduces and describes the product ID system and then explores various marketing applications of this interactive communication tool in the pharmaceutical industry. Finally, it concludes with managerial implications and caveats. Findings – The web‐based product ID system is able to provide a means for product validation and database marketing, facilitate interactive marketing communication and viral marketing, and collect customer information and feedback for research activities. Research limitations/implications – The perceived lack of security of public networks and customer confidence about drug sourcing are always concerns when applied to online technology in pharmaceutical marketing. Caveats about building such a system of coded ID product are discussed. Practical implications – The use of uniquely coded packaging would impact marketing research activities, enhance consumer promotions, allow end‐users to authenticate a drug's validity, provide a means for early reporting of unforeseen risks or benefits, and build/maintain customer relationship. Originality/value – The proposed web‐based product ID system is an innovative concept that can have important marketing implications in the pharmaceutical industry.
International Journal of Pharmaceutical and Healthcare Marketing – Emerald Publishing
Published: Sep 11, 2007
Keywords: Pharmaceuticals industry; Internet marketing; Product identification