Novartis has put up a fight against Bayer, Boehringer Ingelheim, Genentech (Roche), GSK and Sanofi to win the inaugural Digital Pharmaceutical Company of the Year Award at the PM Society Digital Media Awards.

The company took the title based on the breadth and depth of its social media engagement, measured by Symplur, a social media data analytics firm. 

Agencies McCann Manchester and Red Door Communications topped the winnings, each scooping two gold awards, with McCann Manchester also taking home a bronze. emotive won a gold, two silvers and a bronze, while Langland walked away with a gold and a silver and RFA Advertising and Marketing a gold and a bronze. 

M3 with MSA Media and Rainmaker, nitrogen, go digital health (part of Virgo Health), Cherry, Real Science and Inspired Science all took a gold home. 

Client-side, Shire Pharmaceuticals and the World Hepatitis Alliance led the board with two golds each. Other pharmaceutical companies taking home one win each were Rosemount Pharmaceuticals, AstraZeneca, Roche, SPMSD, Actavis+Warner Chilcott, Novo Nordisk, Takeda, Galderma and Bayer Healthcare.

Best digital project or account manager went to Rebeka Morley from Health iQ, and this year, the prestigious Digital Pioneer Award was given to Adam Boucher from Novo Nordisk. 

Now in its sixth year, the PM Society Digital Media Awards saw 73 finalist entries across 17 categories. There was also a much broader spread of winning agencies than in previous years, said Rachel Farrow, digital awards lead and co-chair of the PM Society. She added that several campaigns were truly innovative, which demonstrated the real progress the industry had made in the digital space.

The PM Society Digital Awards are judged in a rigorous two-stage process with online submissions shortlisted to finalists who then present in person to judges for 10 minutes and answer questions for five. A total of 45 judges attended second round judging – predominantly from the pharmaceutical industry, in roles spanning marketing, medical and digital – and augmented by a handful of creative directors to give agency-side perspective. 

The full list of winners is available at