MediaPharm is an All-in-One Online Pharmacy Training provider

MediaPharm Case Study: Content Creation, Audience Building and Client Aquisition

Helping MediaPharm market digitally

Paul and Fawz, Co-founders of the all-in-one pharmacy training provider, MediaPharm

“Before we took on Saam and Pharmacy Mentor, we didn’t have a digital strategy and we knew we needed one. It was the best choice we could have made. Not only is he helping us drive a solid digital strategy and create professional content, his knowledge in online business and marketing is invaluable. Thanks, Saam.”
Paul Lowndes – Co-founder and Director


MediaPharm is a GPhC-accredited pharmacy training provider designed to alleviate the problems associated with pharmacy training. They provide a unique software-based training platform that automates training.


The challenges that Paul and the other team faced were that they didn’t have a digital marketing strategy in place, even though they knew this to be critical. They didn’t know where to begin nor understand what channels they should be using to return the most investment.


Pharmacy Mentor works with them to develop a bespoke digital marketing strategy and to execute, focussing efforts on content creation and LinkedIn.


Developed and is driving an entirely new strategy that is fresh, professional and engaging. Building up a highly targeted audience on LinkedIn and is now creating optimised blog content to improve visibility on Google. The increase in digital activity has led to an increase in website traffic and ultimately demo leads.

Saam Ali - The Pharmacy Mentor

If you’re looking for help in marketing your services better and building on online presence, then please get in touch with me and I’ll be glad to help.

GDPR for Community Pharmacy
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Simplifying GDPR for Community Pharmacy – The Video Guide


Case Study: Driving acquisition, visibility and recognition for My Locum Choice

My Locum Choice - A UK-leading locum platform for pharmacists and other healthcare professionals

The boys from My Locum Choice, finalists at the C&D award ceremony 2017

“Excellent help and support. Bringing pharmacy forward. Has developed and is driving a digital strategy for our company that is growing and engaging our audience, but is also helping us acquire new clients.”
Mitesh Shah – Chief Executive Officer


My Locum Choice is one of the UK’s leading agency for locum pharmacists and other healthcare professionals. Their innovative online platform provides an all-round solution for their clients.


Although the directors were relatively active on Social Media, there wasn’t a clear and defined strategy that was leading to growth and acquisition. Furthermore, their social activity ate up vital time that was required for other business activity.


Pharmacy Mentor works closely with the team to develop a solid strategy and then executes The Social Media and Search Engine BOOSTER Pack, with more a focus on Facebook, LinkedIn and SEO.


Completely revamped their blog and developed The Ultimate Guide to Locum Pharmacy as their cornerstone article. User experience is greatly improved. Creating highly targeted blog content on a monthly basis to position their company higher on Google for a number of important keywords.

A significant increase in engagement and audience numbers across Facebook and LinkedIn. Social activity is leading to an increase in client acquisition, but the time freed up is allowing the directors to focus on other aspects of the business, including client retention.

Saam Ali - The Pharmacy Mentor

If you’re looking for help in marketing your services better and building on online presence, then please get in touch with me and I’ll be glad to help.

The Evolution of Digital Health
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The Evolution of Digital Health


Have you ever seen the film Elysium? I love it. Not just because I’m a sci-fi nerd, but also because of the future concepts of digital health displayed throughout it, such as the medical machine in this scene. Yes, I know. It seems a bit far-fetched to suggest that a machine would be able to clear up cancer.

Or is it?

The film is set in 2154, 136 years from now. Can you imagine what we could achieve in that time considering what we’ve achieved in the last 10 years alone?

I am completely fascinated by how the digital world is being integrated into pharmacy and healthcare, an idea known as Digital Health. The fact is, the digital revolution is shaping how we look after our health and therefore, we as healthcare professionals, need to be up-to-date with the new innovations causing this shift.

I was kindly invited to speak at an event held by International Investors and Founders in Barcelona to talk about “The Evolution of Digital Health”. It was a great occasion with some brilliant speakers and I’m really happy I could provide some value for the day.

Below is the transcript of the slides above so you can understand what on digital earth I was going on about.

If you like me to speak at your event, then please don’t hesitate to contact me. Because I’d love to!


Slide 2


There was a point in time when I was 16 yrs old. One day, I came back home after school to find my brother very excited.


“What is wrong with you?” I said.


“Just have a look at this….” he proudly replied, raising his shiny new phone in front of me, exactly the same one you see on the screen in front of you.


I was confused yet completely blown away by what I was looking at.


“Mate. How am I seeing through your phone…?”


He looked at me slightly disappointed and said: “It’s got a camera on it, you idiot”


A camera on a phone. I couldn’t believe my eyes. And it was that precise, mesmerising moment of my life that gave me the sudden realisation that the world was changing big time.


Slide 3


That was almost 20 years ago. Now, I know what you’re probably thinking….how is this guy ageing so well? (Crowd goes wild with laughter) I’ll tell you my secrets after the presentation for those of you who are interested….


Slide 4


But the point I want to make here is that this was 20 yrs ago and the camera phone concept did change the world! It has revolutionised pretty much every major aspect of our lives since. The way we communicate, the way we work, the way we shop and is now rapidly advancing the way we look after our health.


This is the part I’m interested in.


Slide 5


Camera phones, which are now smartphones, are completely disrupting the healthcare system. Let say I’ve had a rash on my arm for 2 weeks and I now want to see a Doctor.


Slide 6


Less than 10 years ago, the only way of doing this was to:


  • Call the doctor’s surgery and book an appointment.


  • Visit the doctor 2 weeks later and get a paper prescription


  • And then go to the pharmacy with that prescription to collect the medicine


But now, because of the digital revolution, this system, although still very much in motion, seems archaic and very time-consuming.


Slide 7


Because what I can do now is simply:


  • Take a picture of the rash using my smartphone


  • Upload the image via the app where my doctor is there on a live feed


  • And in 2 hours, I’ll have the medicine delivered to the door of my house


The camera phone just made my life easier and saved the NHS time and money.


Slide 8


The combination of a digital device, such as the smartphone, and the healthcare system is a tiny part of the digital health revolution that is exploding in today’s society. As a pharmacist working in the tech industry myself, I’m extremely passionate and excited about the concept of digital health, and today, I’m going to give you a brief insight into what digital health means, how parts of it have evolved in the last decade and what the future might hold.


Presenting "The Evolution of Digital Health" in Barcelona, Spain.

Presenting “The Evolution of Digital Health” in Barcelona, Spain.


Slide 9


Paul Sonnier, the founder of Story of Digital Health and a person who has been working in the field for over 20 years, has defined the term “Digital Health” as:


“the convergence of the digital and genomic revolutions with health, healthcare, living, and society.”


A group on Facebook dedicated to Asthma is Digital Health. An app designed to help you improve yoga is Digital Health. A wristband that measures your heart rate is Digital Health.


Slide 10


It’s where both digital and healthcare worlds collide and overlap. And by digitising healthcare, it’s empowering us to better track and manage our own health, but also to make healthcare delivery more efficient, improve access, reduce costs, increase quality, and make medicine much more personalized and precise.


Now, this is a very top level description of what digital health is. Its roots extend into a complex array of factors which we will have to save for another session, but for a deeper understanding, I’d highly recommend you venture over to Paul Sonnier’s site and have a look a the information he gives there.


Slide 11


In the last decade, we’ve seen huge advancements in the digital health sphere. One of the biggest movements came right at the beginning of 2007 when the iPhone was launched and “Apps” began dominating the world. Ten years on and in 2017 alone, 3.7 billion downloads of health apps were recorded and they are now paramount in our healthcare. They help us meditate better, track our sleep, build relationships with fellow cancer sufferers and order medication super quick.


Slide 12


A couple of years later, wearable technology dented the health sector. You may have heard of Fitbit. Their first device, launched in 2009, clipped onto your trousers and tracked only your movement, sleep and calorie burn.


Fast forward to today and the wearable has evolved into your highly advanced health and fitness companion. Wrist-worn with high definition digital displays and a plethora of functionality including 24-hour heart rate monitoring, guided breathing sessions and dynamic on-screen workouts.


Slide 13


Right at the beginning of the presentation, I gave you the example where I was speaking to a Dr via an app. That is what we call Telehealth or Telemedicine and is now becoming much more commonplace. And rightly so. It’s saving the healthcare system tonnes of money but also improving mortality rate.


The rise of portal technology is allowing both patients and physicians to access medical records and interact online. By giving patients more access to their records, it’s actually empowering them to become more involved and responsible with their healthcare, and look after themselves better.


This decade has also seen the shift in human replacement. Self-service kiosks have replaced the registration tasks in many hospitals and GP surgeries. Not only is this saving time and money by reducing staffing levels, most patients find this an easier and more confidential process.


Slide 14


Startups in the digital health scene became more popular by the launch of venture capital platforms, such as Rock HealthIn 2014, it was recorded that over 3 billion dollars had been poured into digital health startups. The Digital Health scene was officially booming.


Slide 15


And the big health regulatory bodies around the world are now evolving with the digital revolution. Personalised medicine continues to edge closer to the forefront of the healthcare industry, and is where treatment plans will be tailored to the individual instead of a “one size fits all approach”.


To get to this goal, technology is advancing something called pharmacogenomics, which is helping us understand how the genetic makeup of an individual affects their response to drugs.


Slide 16


And, of course, we can’t forget about Social Media either. Social media has also been a huge driver in the advancement of digital health. PatientsLikeMe, launched in 2004, is a social platform that helps connect people with medical conditions and now have a user-base of over 600,000 people worldwide with over 2,800 conditions. Not only do these people feel more connected, the data that this company has collected is being used to develop better healthcare services and devices, which is ultimately improving people’s lives.

And there’s the big word…DATA. It’s all about data. The more data we are collecting in the healthcare space, the more amazing things we can be doing with the technology we have and will build.


Slide 17


So, what does the future of digital health look like? Well, of course, I can’t and no one else in this room can be sure what it’s going to look like exactly. However, it’s the prospects of things like Artificial Intelligence, Big Data and Machine Learning that can certainly give us an indication of what the future might hold.


Slide 18


Dr Meskó Bertalan of The Medical Futurist sums up really well how Artificial Intelligence (AI) is being applied to the healthcare sector and what will come from it in the very near future.


  • One of the most obvious applications of AI is data management. Google, through Deep Mind, is already using AI to mine medical records in order to provide better and faster health services.


  • It’s also being used to develop treatment plans. IBM’s Watson has the ability to assess clinical records and actually choose a treatment plan for a cancer patient.


  • One of the big ways it will help the medical sector is by assisting in repetitive tasks. Medical Sieve, is an algorithm, again launched by IBM, that is currently helping cardiologists make clinical decisions quicker and easier. This technology will no doubt take over basic decision-making, leaving the clinicians with only the most complicated of cases to deal with.


  • AI is now being used to triage patients. Babylon is an app that allows patients to enter their symptoms, and based on the answers, your medical history and common medical knowledge, will actually tell you what you should do and where you need to go. This kind of technology will look to save the NHS millions of pounds each year through unnecessary GP and A&E referrals.


  • And AI is also being applied in the creation an manufacture of drugs. This is revolutionary because drug testing often takes years to complete. With the use of AI, lots of time will be saved in the process, and therefore millions of dollars too.


Digital is impacting healthcare on a huge scale and as we head into the future, it will become more and more integrated. It makes complete sense. It’s going to save us time, money and ultimately improve our health.


Slide 19


But where does it stop? How intelligent are they going to become? Is this the beginning of the rise of the machines?


I’ll let you and Arnie ponder over those questions.


Slide 20


Thank you. For more information on how I’m helping the pharmacy sector in England, please visit Pharmacy Mentor. Please feel free to connect with me on Facebook and LinkedIn too.








If you’d like to talk to me about getting digital, or anything related, please feel free to contact me and I’d be glad to assist you. Also, don’t forget to check out The Ultimate Guide to Driving Your Pharmacy Business in the Digital Age, a free 70-page manual, that is really helping pharmacists understand the importance of going digital and how to create a strategy going forward.

Thanks for visiting and see you in the next learning module!




Case Study: Dr Pharmacy’s growing and engaged Community

Promoting Dementia Awareness as part of a HLP Campaign we launched

Promoting Dementia Awareness as part of a Healthy Living Pharmacy Campaign we launched

“Pharmacy Mentor are currently managing our Social Media strategy (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google My Business) and we’re very happy with the quality of posts being published. Since we went digital, we have noticed an increase in footfall to our pharmacy and by tagging local businesses in our posts, we’re creating better relationships in the area.”
Huma – Director and Superintendent Pharmacist


Dr Pharmacy is an Independent Contractor situated in Luton and is the only pharmacy that is open from 9am until Midnight, 365 days a year in the whole of North London.


The Director and Superintendent Pharmacist of this business further educated herself on the importance of Social Media for Community Pharmacy and understood that going digital provided an opportunity to engage the local community better. However, due to a lack of time and expertise, she needed help in implementing and managing this part of her business.


Pharmacy Mentor executes The Social Media Driver Pack and then upgrades and continues to implement The targeted Social Media GROWTH and Search Engine BOOSTER Pack.


TARGETED audience growth across all social channels has been growing steadily with growth spikes occurring when doing paid Facebook Ads. These targeted Ads typically reach between 10,000 and 20,000 people in the local and surrounding areas. Huma, the director, believes there has been a noticeable change in footfall since implementing a social media strategy. Tagging local businesses and important local authorities, such as the NHS Luton CCG, is provoking shares and comments across their pages to help build brand awareness and improve relationships

Recently created a blog attached to their website and now producing highly targeted content to promote their pharmacy services in the area (local SEO). Already gaining traction with comments from the public but will update with results as this matures.

If you’re looking for help in marketing your services better and building on online presence, then please get in touch with us and we’d be glad to help.

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Case Study: The Birth of a Digital Green Cross Chemist


Helping one of their branches promote themselves and their Christmas stock across Facebook

“Pharmacy Mentor have transformed our digital capacity with a brand new website, a Facebook page and regular postings, online videos and a growing digital community of patients and customers. And this is just the start! “
Andrew – Director and Superintendent Pharmacist


Green Cross Chemists Ltd are the largest chain of Independent Pharmacies in Sheffield and have been providing healthcare in the city since 1992.


Although the company director understood the importance of being online, he didn’t know where to start and was unable to find the time to dedicate to it. This led to long delays in getting a website created, let alone introduce Social Media into the company strategy.


Pharmacy Mentor creates and executes a bespoke digital marketing strategy that includes:

  • Creating a custom-built, modern website designed for the experience we expect from users today
  • A tailor-made Social Media Marketing pack covering Facebook and Instagram
  • Blogging for target keywords around their pharmacy services


The company is now proudly and prominently positioned online. Their professional website mirrors their company on the ground and is receiving queries via email to help reduce the number of calls in the pharmacy.

Pharmacy Mentor is driving a strategy on Facebook (organic and paid) and Instagram. This is helping grow and engage with a loyal audience in their catchment areas and build brand awareness. This is now an integral part of their overall business strategy.

By creating highly-targeted blog posts, we’re positioning their pharmacy services on page one of Google for the keywords people are searching for. As a result, website traffic has increased and their services are now competing better with those offered by the large chains.

If you’re looking for help in marketing your services better and building on online presence, then please get in touch with us and we’d be glad to help.

The Pharmacy Digital Diagnosis

The Pharmacy Digital Diagnosis – How digital is your pharmacy?



Is your pharmacy catering for the digital behaviour of your customers and patients?

In a world where we’re online more than we actually sleep, where online retail sales are breaking records year on year and where 40 million of us in the UK are now active on Social Media…have you considered what kind of presence your pharmacy has online to cater for this behaviour?

Can people find the services you offer on Google before they leave the house? Are you maximising the use of Facebook to target those people and businesses around you? Is your website fit for purpose for the 21st century?

Having a digital presence is just as important as having a physical presence these days and there are so many tools you can use that will help market your services better, create stronger business and customer relationships, and help drive pharmacy footfall and website traffic.

So, in light of this, I wanna help you understand the current health of your pharmacy online and what kind of opportunities lie ahead of you through what I have coined as the “Pharmacy Digital Diagnosis”. Let me explain what this is in a bit more detail.

What is a Pharmacy Digital Diagnosis?


Pharmacy Digital Diagnosis Screen Shot Example

An example shot from the digital diagnosis of a chemist in Nottingham


Essentially, a Pharmacy Digital Diagnosis is where I screen your pharmacy business to help you realise:


  • What your current online presence is like
  • How well you’re marketing your pharmacy online, and
  • What opportunities exist for your business in terms of digital marketing


Through screencasting and voiceover, I will examine each of the digital marketing channels you’re using and the strategies you may be employing, and advise you on:


  • What’s good about them
  • What’s not so good about them
  • And what can be done to improve them, which will lead to better results


All of this is then packaged into a short and concise video which I will send you via email so you can watch, learn and digest in your own time.

I conduct each and every Diagnosis for free of course and what you do with your video is completely up to you. But, if you want to talk to me about how you can improve your presence online, market your pharmacy services better or would like me to implement and manage a more powerful digital marketing strategy for you, then I’m all ears! Get in touch with me by phone, Whatsapp, Email, Skype, FaceTime, LinkedIn, Facebook (you get my drift), and I’ll get back to you right away 🙂

Looking forward to helping you get digital.

All the best,


Click here to request a FREE digital diagnosis of your business now


Here’s Why Every Single Community Pharmacy Should Be Using Facebook



When my colleague rang me and said I was going to speak at The Pharmacy Show in October 2017, I had two emotions run through me.


The first was elation.


“Yes! People are beginning to understand that Social Media is important for Community Pharmacy. Woohoo!”


The second was…


“Sh*t. I’m presenting.”


But it didn’t take me long to understand what I was going to present. The topic would be centred around Facebook for Community Pharmacy.


Facebook is still such an underutilised tool in Community Pharmacy and so I created the presentation (above) titled Why Every Community Pharmacy Should be Harnessing Facebook. It was a 30-minute interactive session to help explain to the audience how its various tools can help improve communication in the locality and increase brand awareness. (Below) you can find an explanation of each of the slides to help you understand better what I was talking about.


Slide 1


Facebook is like a planet. It’s so massive that its formed it’s own gravity, effortlessly pulling its 2 billion inhabitants, often subconsciously, into the application where they live there for around 20 minutes a day. It’s the Jupiter of all social media worlds, and has a population bigger than Whatsapp, Twitter and LinkedIn combined.  


Let me show you some statistics of its use in one of its countries, the UK, which will help you understand its popularity a bit more:


Slide 2


  • 32 million of us have active Facebook accounts and 84% of all adults over the age of 18 use it.
  • By 2022, there will be 42 million monthly active users, which is 7 million more people than in 2015. In fact, the UK has the second biggest Facebook penetration rate in the whole of Europe.
  • And, very importantly, the numbers of Facebook users who are 65yrs and over has been growing ever since records began.


Last year, the UK saw a boom in “social seniors”, where the population of the elderly using Social Media more than doubled, from 19% to 41%. So, when a pharmacy owner tells me that their patients aren’t online or don’t use Facebook, well…


Slide 3


I bet Uranus that they are. The planet that is 🙂


Slide 4


Simply put, Facebook cannot be ignored. Throughout the years, it’s developed into a very important, often critical, tool for business and today I want to show you why and how you should be harnessing it for your pharmacy business.


Slide 5


My name’s Saam and I’m a Community Pharmacist with over 11 years of experience based in Sheffield. I’m also columnist for the Independent Community Pharmacist magazine where I write about digital marketing, and I’m the creator of a platform called Pharmacy Mentor where I’m helping Community Pharmacy, particularly Independent businesses, embrace the digital age.


Slide 6


So, why am I trying to get you to go digital?


1. Well, first and foremost, if pharmacy businesses don’t embrace digital, then it’s going to be a real struggle to survive in what is a digital world we live in today. I have to be blunt about it. The more this world turns, the more we, as consumers, are conducting our business and leisure online. In addition to this, technologies and innovations that are available to us represent big opportunities that will help us grow in new ways.


2. Secondly, it’s my job to teach you guys about it. Over the last 4 years, I’ve become a complete technological nerd. I’m now a professional web developer and video course creator, an advanced digital marketer and I’m relentlessly building new digital products. As I continue to learn about the digital world, I aim to teach and help you capitalise on it.


Slide 7


So, Facebook was one of the first digital tools I began to focus on for Community Pharmacy and there were a few reasons for this:


  • Like I mentioned before, Facebook is the most popular Social Media platform in the UK by miles. If your customers and patients are on there, you should be there too.


  • It’s an extremely dynamic business tool. It’s scope of functionality continues to blow my mind. Facebook are always innovating meaning they’re always releasing new tools which can help businesses.


  • It’s free to use and you don’t need a website to get started.


And lastly, the vast majority of Independent Community Pharmacies don’t use Facebook for Business, or aren’t using it well. This is the case even though most pharmacists do believe it to be important. We’ll get to why this is later on in the session, but again, this represents a great opportunity for Independents.


Slide 8


Question: Ok. I have a question for you. What do you think the benefits of Facebook for Community Pharmacy are?


Ok. Let’s see if these come up in the section that I’m about to talk about now, which is exactly about the benefits of Facebook for Community Pharmacy.


Slide 9


Facebook is an excellent communication tool. You can communicate with your Community quickly and efficiently and get your message out to so many more people than you would without it.


Slide 10


Buxted Pharmacy Tick Post


To demonstrate, look at this post published by Buxted pharmacy (a client of mine) that is giving people information about Ticks in the area, and the signs and symptoms of infection to look out for. They decided to post this since they had seen an increase in the number of people coming into the pharmacy with tick bites. In the space of a few days, it had been shared over a 100 times and reached over 11,000 people. From this single post that took 5 minutes to create, they helped educate 1000’s of people in their locality and beyond whilst building trust into their brand.


Slide 11


Green Cross Chemist Migraine Campaign


For Green Cross Chemists in Sheffield (another client of mine), I used Facebook to communicate a health initiative as part of their HLP requirements.


Everyday for a week, we posted content that helped raise awareness of Migraine, which was supporting the Migraine Trust during Migraine Awareness Week. Facebook helped us deliver our message quicker and cheaper, and by personalizing our posts with Tina the dispenser, we helped reached way more people that we would have by simply having a notice on the counter and talking to the people coming in.


Slide 12


Building Relationships with Local Businesses


Another great tool that Facebook offers is the ability to create groups. Groups are powerful communication tools because you have the chance to influence a significant number of people very quickly, particularly if you’re the administrator of the group.


What I’ve done for one of the Green Cross pharmacies is create a group purely for the shops and businesses in the area with the aim of improving communication and sharing ideas. I’ve only just created this group but business owners are willingly joining and I’m now able to share useful updates to the group at zero the cost. For instance, in a week in October, I shared a post promoting our Flu Jab service which was seen by everyone in the group and resulted in one of the business owners messaging us about it.


Slide 13


Facebook Messenger


And not to forget, your Facebook Page has a messaging service where people can contact you directly. More and more people expect 24 hour customer service these days and what’s really cool about Facebook is that it tells the customer how long they can expect to wait for a response.


And look at this (on the slide). Facebook is telling me to reply more to turn on the Green badge. It’s cunning because who doesn’t want a Green badge? It looks way better right? It’s incentivising me to reply more and at the same time encouraging me to communicate with those who contact us.


Slide 14


Communicating via Facebook is automatically spreading the word about your business but you can also use it tactically to boost the awareness of your pharmacy quite dramatically.


Slide 15


Greenwoods Pharmacy Hack


I have to refer to the Greenwoods Pharmacy hack. I call it a “hack”, because they hacked the system and it just sounds really cool.


Look at this post they published back in 2015. They created a really nice video about their pharmacy and built it into a post with a simple competition. People would receive a free gift in store if they:


  1. Liked their page
  2. Shared the video and
  3. Quoted Vid 1 in store


This simple tactic has generated over 400 reactions, 300 shares and a whopping 127,000 views. Now that is spreading the word on a whole new level! Note. There may have been some paid advertising involved here.


I contacted these guys to see what this had done for them and the owners confirmed that this post had built their audience quickly, is helping install trust in their brand and for a period of time when it went viral, confirmed an increase in footfall and sales. Amazing work by these guys.


Slide 16


Totley Pharmacy Growth Hack


Another pharmacy that growth hacked their audience very significantly in a matter of days is Totley Pharmacy.


They’ve used Facebook to showcase their partnership with St Lukes Hospice and Sheffield United Football club, and have harnessed this to create a competition where someone could win a couple of tickets to a Sheffield United match. The post went completely viral and their audience, represented by Page Likes and Followers, went from 55 to 1400 in only 5 days. They now have the opportunity to directly influence so many more people in the city of Sheffield. Very clever use of Facebook.


Slide 17


Now, I already showed you how Greenwood Pharmacy drove more people into their store with that amazing growth hacking post of theirs. But this isn’t the only way you can increase footfall. Facebook has many other tools that can help you do this. Let me take you through some of those now.


Slide 18


Build an online shop


A really cool feature of your business page is that you’re able to build an online shop where you can display various products of yours, whether it’s medicines, beauty products, or high-end products. Literally anything you sell, you can showcase on here, just like I’ve started doing with Green Cross Chemists. I created a section just for the premium products we sell at one of the pharmacies, promoted it to our audience and the staff working there reported back to me that people were coming in to buy the products because of this.


In fact, in the States, your Facebook shop actually has full e-commerce functionality. People are able to buy products directly from Facebook itself, so watch this space, because it won’t be too long before this functionality arrives in the UK.


Slide 19


Another great feature of your Facebook page is the ability to create an offer, and offers can convert into sales. Take a look at this photo (on the slide) of Paul from Buxted Pharmacy again. He created a 3 for 2 seasonal offer on his antihistamines for the whole summer which positively impacted his sales. How does he know this? People came in and told him! “Hey Paul, I saw your offer on Facebook. I want to buy some antihistamines.”



Can someone point out to me why this image is so much more powerful compared to a generic image of a few boxes of hay fever medicines, say?


Slide 20


Another thing you can do is create an event. Now, I haven’t done this for my clients yet and I haven’t seen any other Independent create one on Facebook as of yet either. However, Community Pharmacies host events all the time, such as charity events and other health campaigns. Why not use the events feature on Facebook to drive more traction?


Take a look at this (on the slide) “Make up Masterclass” event that was hosted in Rotherham not so long ago. In her beauty salon, she organised a basic makeup tutorial that lasted 2 hours and it attracted 6 people at £20 a head. Now, as well as making £120 in 2 hours giving a class, it’s more than likely she sold makeup, and the fact that she went out of her way to give a class has absolutely secured their loyalty as customers.


So, holding events can certainly be powerful. Have a think…what kind of events could you host and use Facebook to drive traction?


Slide 21


So, from what we’ve just seen and discussed, let’s recap the benefits that Facebook can provide for you as a pharmacy business:


  • You can reach more people in less time, whilst saving money and the planet.
  • It’s a great platform to host and promote health campaigns
  • It’s a brilliant tool to help build your relationships in the Community, both B2C and B2B.
  • By using messenger and replying to comments, you’re improving your service to customers
  • By publishing posts and engaging your audience, you’re boosting brand awareness
  • By hosting events and engaging with your community online, you’re building trust and loyalty
  • And Facebook can help with aspects of footfall and sales


Slide 21


Therefore, understanding these benefits, why aren’t Independents using Facebook?


Slide 22


Ok, so I did some research and sent out a survey to the pharmacy owners on my email list, on social media and those who I know personally.


  1. The number one reason is time. I totally understand this, we never have a minute spare in the day, I get it. But, how come Buxted Pharmacy, Totley Pharmacy and many other pharmacies are finding time to manage their Facebook strategy? The reason is that these guys have learned to build it into their current business model meaning it just forms part of daily routine now. And besides, you’re looking at a couple of hours a week and some of your staff will be more than capable of managing it.


Hands up in the room who has a smartphone? Everybody right? Your whole Facebook strategy can be managed easily on there, while you’re on the move.


  1. But I’m also very aware that, like point number 2 mentions, you’re not sure where to start or how to even begin. That’s normal. You’re pharmacists at the end of the day, not digital marketers, and it takes time to learn these things.


  1. You also believe it not to be a priority. I understand this too. You’ve got so much on your plate that something like this is considered an extra. And…


  1. You’re not sure about the ROI. Again, you’re completely right. I wish I had more concrete evidence in numbers that showed an increase in footfall and sales from Facebook. But that’s just hard to come by.

However, Facebook for a local Independent Community Pharmacy isn’t about that. It’s more about brand awareness, improving communication, building better and stronger relationships in the community and generating trust. This will cumulatively bring about a positive impact for your business.


The fact is, having an active Facebook page is better for your business than not having an active Facebook Page. It’s a free business tool there to be capitalised on and it’s scope of functionality is incredible. Can you imagine if every single contractor began educating and promoting their services on Facebook, where 32 million people in the UK currently reside? We may finally be thought of as the first port of call for healthcare in the Community.


If you aren’t using Facebook yet, then you’re missing out on a great opportunity for growth


Facebook is such a great tool for Community Pharmacy. They are continuously innovating and releasing new features to help businesses and individuals communicate with their audience. We now live in a digital age where your consumers are increasingly conducting their business and leisure online. Facebook is a great place to begin capturing their attention.


Over the last year, I have been perpetually producing content to help educate you around its use. However, I’m very aware that Pharmacy Owners are strapped for time and many are not as tech savvy as person such as myself. This is why I have created digital products and services to help get you set up on Facebook and begin driving your business into the future.


The Pharmacy and Social Media Mastery Course



This step-by-step video course helps Independent Community Pharmacy businesses get set up on Facebook and Twitter. It also teaches them, in the quickest way possible, how to build an audience that matters to them, how to engage with them and use the various tools within each application in the aim of driving their business online. The course has been designed in a way that anyone in the pharmacy is able to take.

For more information, please access the course details here.


Digital Marketing Services for Community Pharmacy


I have recently launched a digital marketing service for Independents, Small-Chain pharmacies and other small to medium-sized healthcare businesses where I am managing a strategy for them. Please click here for some testimonials from current clients and then click here if you’d like more information about these services.



If you’d like to talk to me about getting digital, or anything related, please feel free to contact me and I’d be glad to assist you. Also, don’t forget to check out The Ultimate Guide to Driving Your Pharmacy Business in the Digital Age, a free 70-page manual, that is really helping pharmacists understand the importance of going digital and how to create a strategy going forward.

Thanks for visiting and see you in the next learning module!



Google My Business for Community Pharmacy

Google My Business – A must-have Tool for Community Pharmacy



Google My Business for Community Pharmacy

Are you aware of how many people find your pharmacy on Google? Are you sure the information Google has about your pharmacy is correct? Wouldn’t you like to be able to control the information that Google has for your pharmacy and begin actively promoting your products and services?

The answers to these questions come down to one application – and that’s Google My Business. You may not have even heard of it. That’s fine and (relatively) normal! But rest assured, it’s one of the most important Social Media marketing tools you’ll come across for your pharmacy. In my opinion, its use should be mandatory for every bricks and mortar business that exists.

In this lecture, we’re going to learn more about what Google My Business is and why it’s important for you as a local pharmacy business.

Help customers and patients find and connect with you

In the words of Google:

“Google My Business is a free and easy-to-use tool for businesses and organizations to manage their online presence across Google, including Search and Maps. By verifying and editing your business information, you can both help customers find you and tell them the story of your business.”

This description alone should alert you as to why Google my Business is imperative to you as a local pharmacy. Essentially, it’s a platform that houses various different Google applications to create a powerful business marketing tool. The platform includes your Google plus social media profile, Google Maps, Google Reviews, Google Analytics, Google Insights and other applications, all designed to help you stand out in the best way possible on the most popular search engine in the world.


The Google My Business Homepage

Google My Business – An excellent tool for Comunity Pharmacy


The easiest way to understand the importance of Google my Business is to look at some real-life pharmacies that are out there.

Let’s head over to Stoke-on-Trent in the UK. This is what Lloyds Pharmacy in the Shelton area looks like on Google. If you clicked the previous link, you’ll be able to see the whole listing when you scroll down.


Lloyds Pharmacy in Shelton


As you can imagine, being a well-known brand, they are registered on Google my Business, and this is what having a good Google My Business profile looks like. They have photos so you can see exactly what the pharmacy looks like and where it is. They have 16 reviews which have produced an overall rating of 4.2 stars out of 5, and Google really nicely displays the stars. This instantly builds trust for the viewer. You can find more details underneath like the address, phone number and very importantly, their opening hours, which is what customers and patients are likely to be searching for. Underneath, you can find other reviews from around the web, and Google have nicely integrated their NHS Choices reviews too. Sometimes you’ll find Facebook reviews or reviews from another platform, like Yelp or Pharmacy Flu Jabs next to this too.

You can also see how Google My Business cleverly display how busy the pharmacy is at various times. This really helps inform the customer better about when to go, for example, if someone’s short of time, they’ll use this information to plan their day better. And how good is this…Google says people typically spend 10 minutes here. I’m not really sure how they know this, but for a pharmacy, that is really great for a customer or patient to understand. It signifies a quick turnover of prescriptions and entices people to use their services.


Google My Business waiting times

Could represent prescription waiting times?


And below this, you can see actual reviews left by real customers. We all know how important reviews and social proofing are for pharmacy because again, it instantly instils trust in the customer.

Now, compare this profile with Sh***on Pharmacy who are literally down the road from Lloyds and who have not validated their pharmacy on Google My Business.


Google My Business Shelton Pharmacy

A pharmacy who hasn’t validated and optimised their business on GMB


I know this hasn’t been owned because of the question I can see in the image “Own this business?”. Hopefully, you can see a difference between the two listings straight away. Even if you haven’t validated your pharmacy as a listing, if you’re an established local business that’s been around for some time, Google will automatically create a  profile for you – like you can see here for this pharmacy. However, it’s seriously lacking compared to the profile of Lloyds we saw just earlier. We can’t see any reviews for this pharmacy, the business hours are missing, it’s not linked to their own website or NHS Choices and no photos have been uploaded. In a world where we would like to find out information about a place and contact them as quick as possible, Sh***on pharmacy are making it unnecessarily more difficult for their consumers.

Google Maps is increasingly being used as a search engine today

And when it comes down to a consumer deciding which pharmacy to use after a search on Google Maps, those who have poor or incomplete profiles are likely to lose out. Take a look at this. People regularly use Google maps as a search engine these days to find a place where they need to go. If I type “Pharmacy in stoke”, Sh***on pharmacy doesn’t exist in the sidebar here. And if I get more specific and type “pharmacy in Shelton” although we can see Sh***on Pharmacy here, we have 4 other pharmacies in the vicinity which all have reviews and more information about the business in general. If a consumer was choosing a pharmacy based on this search, it’s unlikely they’d choose Sh***on Pharmacy.


Pharmacies as seen on Google Maps

Pharmacies as seen on Google Maps


It’s imperative that you validate your pharmacy on Google My Business

So you see, Google My Business optimises your presence on Google Search, Maps and across other platforms it’s associated with, and from the two examples we’ve covered in this module, you can clearly see the benefits of it.

However, you’ve just seen the surface of what the tool can do for you. It has many other features that can help expose you online and rank you higher in search results, and some important features are the insights and analytics you’re able to examine on there. Google My Business helps you understand how your customers find you online and what they do when they get there, and you’re able to actively market through the platform. 

If you’d like to optimise your pharmacy on Google My Business, then I’ve made it very easy for you. The course Drive Pharmacy Footfall with Google is a step-by-step video course that guides you through the setup and validation procedure and helps you optimise your listing to 100%. Furthermore, you’ll learn how to actively market your products and services through the application and implement a very time-efficient strategy that anyone can manage in your pharmacy team. Click here for more information.

Thanks for visiting and see you in the next learning module! For more modules, please click here.




5 Powerful Tools to Help Expose your Flu Jab Service



What are you doing digitally to promote your Flu Jab Service?

It’s the beginning of the Flu Season and we’re all set, ready to jab away. Your pharmacists and consultation room are signed off, the staff have been briefed about procedure and you’ve plastered marketing material all over your pharmacy.

However, have you done anything on a digital level yet? Are you maximising the exposure of your service to reach those who don’t just walk past or come into your pharmacy organically?

In this tutorial, I’m collaborating with Pharmacy Talk – Uniting Pharmacy through Conversations, to talk to you about 5 online tools that will help you magnify your marketing efforts around the flu jab service you offer this year.

1) Facebook



A simply brilliant tool to help you market your Flu Jab service is Facebook. On your business page, you can promote via the services tab, building an offer, pinning your posts, creating an engaging header and much, much more.

But your page isn’t the only feature of Facebook that can help you. You can message businesses directly through their own pages, publish posts in local relevant groups and even create a group yourself that will give you influencing power over a significant number of people. As an example, what I have done for one of my clients recently is create a group purely for the shops and businesses in the local area with the goal of improving communication. Local businesses have willingly joined and I can now post updates in there about the flu jab service they offer. Powerful marketing at zero the cost.

If you’d like to begin driving your flu service and business in general on Facebook, The Pharmacy and Social Media Mastery Course is the perfect place for you to start. Click here for more info.

NOTE: Due to the nature of Facebook today (Aug 2018), the organic reach of your posts through your page has deteriorated significantly. That’s why Facebook Ads are more important than ever in order to reach your target audience effectively. Facebook Ads are very powerful and that’s why I pretty much always include them in the digital marketing strategies I create for my clients.

2) Pharmacy Flu Jabs


Add your pharmacy as a listing to Pharmacy Flu Jabs


I teamed up with PharmData to create a platform called Pharmacy Flu Jabs which helps the public find a pharmacy that provides the flu jab service quickly and easily. At this time of year, there is always a spike in the search terms associated with the flu jab, meaning people are looking for information about it online. By adding your listing on here, you’ll become much more visible as a flu jab provider online, making it much more likely for people to choose your services.

3) Update your website


Update your website with promotional flu jab material


Your website is your online shop window, so make sure you or your developer updates it to reflect that you’re providing the flu jab service. Just like I’ve done with this client. As soon as the user lands on the site, they can’t miss it. The button leads to a blog post I created about the service which is now showing up on page one of Google, or if you have an online booking calendar, it could just as easily direct to that too.

4) Create a post on Google My Business


Google My Business can help you promote the flu jab service


It’s imperative as a local business that you have a Google My Business profile owned and validated for your pharmacy. If you don’t, then you’re simply missing out on a great opportunity to improve the visibility of your pharmacy online. Within the application itself, you can create posts about your flu jab which is fantastic free advertising.

Look at the post I created for Crosspool Pharmacy a few days ago. If someone now types in “Crosspool Pharmacy” into Google, they’re going to land on their Google My Business profile, and you can see a very visual promotional post on the Flu Jab service they offer. If you click on it, it gives them more info and this button takes them to a blog post on the flu. Not only is this helping with service awareness, it’s helping position this blog post higher on the google rankings. A great little feature that all pharmacy businesses can be using.

If you’d like to set up your pharmacy on Google My Business, then you can take this course which will walk you through the whole process, step-by-step. Using instructional videos, the Drive Pharmacy Footfall with Google course will teach you how to use the tools within Google My Business to attract new customers.

5) - The perfect tool to expose your Flu Jab Service


And the last thing I’m going to talk about is, the biggest business directory in the UK. Here, you have the contact details of pretty much every business in your locality who you can connect with and talk to about your flu jab service. Whether it’s through email or by phone, contact every single business and offer them the option to get them and their staff vaccinated. You could offer them a 10% discount to make your offering more attractive. Get one of your staff to take an hour out each day for a week and contact everyone within your catchment area.

Think digital. Think further than the walls of your pharmacy

By using these online tools, you’re gonna maximise the exposure of your flu jab service and capture more business than simply using the marketing material present in your pharmacy. If you need help with any of the platforms, again, I’m here to support you as always. Thanks for watching and I wish you the most successful flu season yet.

Thanks for visiting and see you in the next learning module!