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The pharmaceutical industry is competitive, fast and constantly evolving, which can mean a fun and exciting marketing career. A pharmaceutical marketing job can entail product and service development, research, communication projects, sales programs, customer relations and event coordination. Educating, communicating and informing prospects and clients is key in the marketing role.
General Job Description
Each company divides its marketing functions in a unique way that matches its business goals and objectives. In general, as a pharmaceutical marketing professional, you will manage marketing programs that promote products to health-care professionals, while assisting with sales goals. You may manage vendors and external marketing agencies engaged in company promotions. Branding, communications and collateral development are also common responsibilities. Development of business strategies, such as pricing, may be required. You will also have to identify and analyze competition, research new target markets and assist with events and trade-show activities.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities
You'll need to have (or develop) an understanding of the pharmaceutical industry, as well as marketing knowledge, including techniques for successfully promoting and selling products. Business knowledge, budgeting, strategic planning and resource allocation are also knowledge basics that any pharmaceutical-marketing job candidate should possess.
To succeed in pharmaceutical marketing, you'll need strong interpersonal skills and the ability to work with and manage cross-functional teams. Additional qualifications that typically appear in job descriptions include "detail oriented," "excellent planning capabilities" and having an "ability to actively listen." Solid communication skills including presentation, verbal and written abilities are a must.
A bachelor's degree from an accredited university is typically required, but usually the field of study can vary. Experience in marketing methods and techniques will be necessary in order to effectively meet company and sales objectives. Knowledge or experience in the pharmaceutical industry may be required.
Associations can provide educational and informational support and services for the pharmaceutical marketing professionals. A few pharmaceutical associations include Pharma.org and the National Pharmaceutical Association. In addition, the American Marketing Association can provide career assistance and networking opportunities.
Keeping Your Edge
The pharmaceutical industry is continually researching and manufacturing new products. That means that to succeed in the industry as a marketing professional, you must be willing to constantly educate yourself so you'll remain up to date and informed on industry trends and products.
Ruth Pankratz has extensive writing and editing experience in marketing, résumés, letters, Web content, business development, social media and promotional materials. Her work has been published in diverse industries. Pankratz earned her bachelor's degree in communications from Kennesaw State University and her Master of Business Administration from Colorado State University.