PM360 2019 Trailblazer Awards Innovation Brand Champion Rich Palizzolo

Rich Palizzolo, Sr. Director, Platform Marketing, bluebird bio

Rich Palizzolo joined bluebird bio in January 2018 with the mandate: Define what digital means to the company. Sounds simple enough, right? After all, he was joining a company with no digital infrastructure in place yet. A company that planned to rely heavily on digital to empower stakeholders to make informed decisions about gene therapy. And a company that was still pre-commercial, but preparing for explosive growth, scale, and globalization. Maybe not so simple—and yet Rich handled all those challenges with a level of coordination, innovation, and collaboration that has driven continued success.

In June 2018, he founded the Digital Experience Team (DXT) to create a knowledge center that had the know-how, tools, and structure to empower every employee to embrace digital, develop next-level omnichannel stakeholder experiences, and allow an organization to execute digital flawlessly and efficiently.

While the company just received its first product approval in the EU, Rich has already spearheaded several innovative initiatives, including the ChallengeTDT digital campaign. This global web experience, omnichannel media, and congress presence is designed to change HCPs’ perceptions/attitudes towards transfusion dependent beta thalassemia (TDT) and to ensure patient’s unmet needs are recognized and discussed.

Additionally, he launched the Qualified Treatment Center (QTC) Service Portal that acts as the digital conduit between bluebird bio and the people delivering its treatments to patients. The portal offers a centralized one-stop-shop to access patient materials, enroll patients in treatment, and manage scheduling and traceability—all within an intuitive user interface.

Rich also ensures his team follows a Patient Experience Credo, so they know that even when they embark on a road less traveled, their ultimate purpose is to serve patients and align to bluebird’s values.


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