PM360 2020 Trailblazer Awards Autoimmune Brand Champion Alex Vandevere

Alex Vandevere, Associate Director, U.S. Immunology Marketing, Bristol Myers Squibb

“Every brand has a wealth of stories to tell,” Alex Vandevere explains. “And Orencia is no different. Patient stories. Informative stories. Real stories. Inspirational stories. Just like people, brands have different personalities and characteristics that define and give life to the brand. And we know our patients.”

First and foremost, Alex and his team know living with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is hard. So to better engage with these patients and help them deal with their challenges, the team took engagement to the next level by producing a Facebook Live event. This was not only a first for BMS but it was one of the first-ever livestreams of a Facebook Live event by a pharma brand. The 39-minute live broadcast shared the personal stories of the brand’s patient ambassadors in creative ways while challenging them to work together to accomplish tasks, and in the process unlock valuable information about helping to manage their RA. The event was surrounded with multichannel tactics to reach even more patients, including a full :60 TV online video ad unit, 24/7 mobile and desktop chat services, and a support channel on Facebook Messenger.

Ultimately, the Facebook Live video was viewed more than 424,000 times during the campaign period, and following the completion of the campaign the brand saw increases in both the level of engagement of patients who visited branded digital properties as well as increases in awareness of the brand’s patient support program. But its biggest success was helping drive urgency for a better way to treat RA by sharing the powerful stories of these patient ambassadors.