I connected with Susan Brown at an industry luncheon. We quickly bonded over the topic: how medical device companies could metric their marketing efforts real-time to determine which ones were the most efficient revenue drivers. She was working at Conceptus at the time and I was an alumni so we decided to meet again and learn more about each other’s experiences. I admired what Susan was doing then and now and I couldn’t resist asking her our interview questions.
- How did you arrive in your current role?
Basically I’ve been able to take my technology marketing background (Intel, Cisco, Apple, etc.) and apply it to healthcare/med devices/pharma products and services. I’ve been involved in technology and healthcare since the 1990’s; first with a medical imaging company that evolved into a company with a software platform for automating clinical trial patient identification (kdhsystems.com). I’m still an advisor to them. Then I had the opportunity to work on revolutionary changes in healthcare for Kaiser Permanente’s HealthConnect launch—we had no idea it would be the most disruptive model for change in US healthcare. Most recently, as eMarketing consultant for Genentech, I got to lead the new Tamiflu launch for the 2012-2013 season—been a fun progression!
- What do you love most about the work you do?
Best of all to me is to work with creative, smart people and use new techniques and technology to connect and inform health care professionals and consumers/patients, through such methods as affinity communities. For example, as Digital Marketing Director for Conceptus, I produced the “GYN Summit” Community, a moderated on-line forum and destination site for OB/GYN docs to share best practices and communicate easily and securely with each other about procedures, best practices and techniques. Was great to “meet” new folks, help them learn from each other and learn a lot myself as well!
Also I especially enjoy the challenge of transitioning healthcare marketing to involve more social media—there’s still a lot of hand-holding to do to help companies engage consumers, patients and healthcare professionals in new ways of communication.
- Where is the most exotic place in the world that you’ve eaten?
In November 2011 I went to Vietnam and Cambodia— so far the trip of my lifetime. One evening in Cambodia, our guide took us to a local nighttime street market with food stalls of all kinds. There were food stands with grilled frog legs, tiny birds (not sure what they were) and “snacks” of sautéed crickets spiced with soy sauce and Sriracha (a type of hot sauce). The crickets are crunchy like popcorn with kernels that get in your teeth! Actually I tried everything and liked it all.
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