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Pharma USA 2023: Optimizing Your Modular Content Creation


How to build a modular content system to optimize content creation and delivery, Using Al-powered engines that know your HCP's viewing behavior, using discomfort as an advantage and much more.

Although the concept of modular content has been around some time, the era is quickly approaching where technology like artificial intelligence is evolving how it's created.

In the presentation: “The next silver bullet: Modular Content” held at Pharma USA 2023 for in Philadelphia, Bryan Cohen, Director of Digital Content Systems for Moderna, spoke on using modular content system to optimize content creation and delivery, creating templates for your modular content library with pre-approved content to accelerate go-to-market strategy, and using discomfort as an advantage.

Cohen drew parallels of modern-day modular content and influencing, back to the Renaisssance times of Martin Luther, who is famed to have made the Bible more accessible to the masses on woodcuts with verses with accompanying illustrations.

“It was not cheap. But it's really the first time that use illustrations to content was repurposed, he was not only pulling from content that he'd created before, but he was actually pulling from other content that other people were distributing as well. They were translating it into different languages and reusing the images as it was printed and distributed. It had the latest technology when he first came out with the 95 thesis, just a few years before, you really weren't able to do woodcuts very easily, but now suddenly you could…He was extremely media savvy. He knew that in order to reach the audience he needed to reach, which were younger people who could not read that, he had to explain the information in a different way. And that's exactly what the pictures are. So, is this the first modular content? Yeah, it sure is. It would go from book form, to a poster, to then verbal as people saw the pictures, and could explain.”

The four main components of modular content are: supporting imagery, a claim or scientific statement, reference, distribute to multiple channels. Note: It's not an approved claim, it's pre-cleared/pre-arranged.

“Having a claim, graphic, and a reference, is not enough, you have to have those usage rules. Usage rules are going to give you the ability to know what and where to pour into a template. And the template part of it is where we start seeing a little bit of magic happen.”

Usage rules can also be one of the biggest challenges, some may even say something about having to change size of type, or color, based on the country. Usage rules can't just be a free text field, you'd better have that captured somewhere. It has to be based on a taxonomy and structure.

Usage guidelines major areas:

  • Headline
  • Content
  • Subheads
  • Brand strategy
  • Groupings (identify who/what the module is targeted for)

Engage marketing and legal teams early and often, highlighting what benefits them.

Modular content includes embracing a little bit of discomfort. Make sure to have teams that are the right size, and flexible enough to work with the natural uncertainty that's going to happen in projects like this.

“They're taking on bite sized chunks and building on success. If you start small and build up, you're going to be able to add in those usage guidelines. You're going to be able to tie in your metrics and analytics and be able to use AI to do interesting things, like content creation, based off of what you've already created…AI can go through that content and create claims and statements—that technology exists now. So you start thinking about the bite sized pieces that you need to pull together in order to enable that type of comfort with these automated systems.”

Five things to keep in mind:

  1. Modular content is not about return on investment
  2. The goal should be to have reusable content
  3. Platform vs Product
  4. Think ahead
  5. What you want to measure
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