Search & Regulated Industries

Dec 6, 2006 - 5:27 pm 0 by
Filed Under SES Chicago 2006

The room is so empty right now, modding is J. Rohrs.

Heather Frahm, co-founder, Catalyst on-line

She showed an example of a high cholesterol paid search ad, by pfizer. She shows examples of the ads, who uses what text and keywords and trademarks and terms in the ads. Using diseases in ads, can be an issue with FDA.. ?

Fair Balance Act - Make sure your landing pages have all the safety info for that ad - There are many rules here

Anything that is visible or not visible needs to go through regulatory in the pharmaceutical business. Most regulated healthcare have guidelines on how the content is written. There are cases where you need to have big words in the page, but that may be against rules (the language, by rules, need to be very simple). Misspellings can also be an issue with rules. There was a large query volume about a disease that doesnt have symptoms, so they made a page that said there were no symptoms. You need to explain search to marketers, regulators and legal.

They try to only get links from US base sites, because most these companies are set up in the US. Make sure the links you get don't make bold claims about you. All text links must be approved.

Press Releases can generate a lot of links, but typically the regulators dont like to link to the main site. It is dangerous to make those bold statements, that link to the brand site. So try to convince them of the importance. If not, then make sure to optimize the site that is getting those links and add call to actions on those pages to the main site.

Pharma has tons of assets. So make sure you leverage all those assets, but through the rules set forth by the FDA.

Ward Tongen from Medbonic is now up. He posted an FDA Warning letter he received back in 2000. He said you do not want to get one of these letters. The FDA regulates the medical industry, and other organizations may regulate yours. Go to the FDA Warnings Letter Archive (I think over here.)

Before they developed an SEO process they had an "over the wall process." They wrote copy, sent it to legal, legal sent it back and they would then try to optimize the content after it was sent back. But this was not ideal. They had poorly optimizes pages, and reapproval was needed often. Expectations were often not met. So they...

After- (higher up the food chain). They worked with the copyrighters directly, before they even put pen to paper. A lot of time content is repurposed, so they have to get involved early. If you can work within the business process, it will help.

PPC - The Approval Sandbox Anything inside the sandbox goes through legal, anything outside you do not need legal (such as budgets, etc.)

They use blogging as a tactic, believe it or not, because of all the regulatory issues. This also goes through legal.

The blog is at, last updated October 30th, I guess those legal people are slow.

Martin Murray from Interactive Return to talk about the Drinks Industry Starts off with the company pitch...

Industry Regulatory Bodies: - Century Council - Distilled Spirits Council of the US - The European Forum for Responsible Drinking - The Portman Group

Ethical Marketing Guidelines - Alcohol strength of it should not be the main theme - Don't promote buy one get one free - Age should be kept into mind - No association with drugs, sex, anti-social stuff, etc.

When his client moved from marketing to online marketing, they were in for a big shock, he said.

Google has a content policy, part of that, they do not allow you to market alcohol in AdWords. But AdWords for wine is ok, not wine or hard liquor. Yahoo does allow allow it, so does MSN.

With organic search marketing, all pages need to go through an age verification form. Search engines can not submit their age. He said there are black hat things you can do, but its not so good. It is a big challenge for them.

There are responsible drinking messages throughout the web site...

Search Marketing vs Branding Objectives, there is a conflict often.

Search Marketing Techniques include; - Organic -- content -- linking -- etc - PPC -- Yahoo -- MSN - Blogs - Newsletters - Offline marketing

Success: - Shows some queries they rank well for

Liana Evans from Commerce360 from the retail industry She has a slide that shows the area the FTC regulates and she will touch on some.

She promised to send me her slides, Ill post it later, lots of good details in it.

Update: Here is Liana Evans great presentation as a PDF document.

These posts may have spelling and grammar issues. These are session notes, written quickly and posted immediately after the session has been completed. Please excuse any grammar or spelling issues with session posts.


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