How Social Media and Search marketing works in Regulated Industries?

Posted by Sanket Patel

March 23, 2012

SMM 12 min read

Nowadays, there are large numbers of companies in regulated industries which are looking for the best cost savings, huge efficiencies for dollars spent and these companies are shifting huge dollars from traditional advertising to social media and digital. Mainly, these industries comprise financial services, alcohol & tobacco, pharmaceuticals and healthcare and more have rules and regulations which govern their marketing and communications. For doing marketing, compliance is one of the necessary steps and these days, digital and social media where more and more numbers of customer’s conversations, feedback and action are visible and also recorded publicly. Such companies also have some extra task of figuring out what regulations apply and how.

Few Regulations of Concern:

When it comes to regulation of concern then there is not only one regulation or law which has been interpreted but various and some are simpler and easier to apply than others. As we all know that companies and agencies are serving government entities that must be 508 complaints. If any company is of healthcare and insurance then that company has to make sure that their technology infrastructure, record-keeping, and privacy policies are compliant with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA).

Marketer’s Issues and Challenges:

Well, many of you all think that why these requirements and regulations are challenging for marketers in digital, social channels and search? Well, the laws are not new but an interpretation of how to apply them is. Before the guidelines of advertising are completely well established in TV commercials for drugs, companies must refer customers to the matching print ad in a magazine for further details. The company also have to remember to link to the prescribing information when it comes to advertising of product on the website.

On the given link, it is important to have required details about dosage, side effects, adverse interactions, black-box warnings, etc. In any case, when companies run search ads on Google then what happens? Then how will they represent warning and side effects? When any customers post any negative comment about their drugs then those companies are obliged to monitor the entire Internet or all social networks mention regarding their product?

Well, you know what the rules are governing the new forms of personally identifiable information that are disclosed in digital and social channels. As everyone knows that still, FDA has not disclosed any ultimate guidelines or interpretations for these new marketing situations, there are lots of companies that have been forced to assess and interpret these scenarios themselves and act according to the level of acceptable risk.

Tips to be Obedient

Social Media Listening: Now, marketers can easily treat social media channels as venues for continuous listening instead of places where they can post more ads. Social media venues are completely the best and rich sources of new imminent that cannot be gleaned from traditional forms of market research.

Search as Research: Marketers are also able to use search as a form of research instead of just another way of drive more traffic to their websites. The way of search volume over time enables marketers to use search as research to collect new insights continuously.

Digital analytics: Naturally, the online as well as digital technologies are two-way and also precisely measurable. The detailed analytic will disclose what they are seeking for how they found it and how it impacts.


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