Director of policy and communications at MSD and executive steering group member Harry Brady looks at how the PharmaTimes Marketer and Communications Team of the Year competitions have evolved to embrace the importance of cross-functional working and the value of great healthcare communications in the marketing mix.

Commenting on how the role of the marketer has changed in the last 25 years, Harry says: "Whether we like it or not, it is true to say that our customers and stakeholders now receive information via a range of media and platforms. This means finding new ways of reaching audiences ‘where they are’, often with 280 characters instead of 280 words. It also means generating valuable insight as currency in the information exchange, not just marketing claims. Put simply, if we still want to be part of any conversation, we need to have something interesting to say and we need to be in the right room."

For the first time ever, the Communications Team of the Year competition will give individuals in agencies and pharma companies the chance compete side by side. While the award itself will fall under the Communications Team of the Year umbrella, such is the crossover with the Marketer of the Year competition, the new Aspiring Communications Manager of the Year is open to individuals in agencies and pharma companies. The finals day will be held on 4 October, the same day as the Marketer of the Year finals for the individual categories.

Commenting on the move, Harry says: “I’m delighted that, for the first time, we have Aspiring Communications Manager in the singles category."  This is a great reflection of the strategic role that communications now plays in the marketing mix. I’d like to see more healthcare communications categories in the future to celebrate and encourage the amazing talent which we have in the UK industry.”

The PharmaTimes Marketer of the Year Awards is celebrating it's 25th annivesary this year and with the increasing challenges in the marketplace, the importance of taking part in the competition has never been greater.

“For me, the PharmaTimes competition challenges provide a unique way of putting great people to the test on a level playing field, in real time. Other award programmes tend to recognise activities retrospectively, and that’s really good, but all the entries are so different, and usually come from an anonymised team, so it’s difficult to identify and recognise talented individuals. The Pharmatimes Awards are all about identifiable specialists responding to a common brief and delivering great insight and ideas, ‘here and now’ “.

The PharmaTimes Marketer of the Year Awards will be presented alongside the Communication Team of the Year and the all-new Sales Awards.

The deadline for entries is 1 September

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