Case study

GSK x Meltwater

Transforming healthcare professionals into influencers


Both Influencer marketing and healthcare are ubiquitous in today’s society, but the two industries don’t often intersect. It was this gap that GSK — a British-based pharmaceutical company — sought to close.

As social media usage has continued to increase, healthcare companies are aware of the importance of meeting their audience where they are. And GSK saw the opportunity to tap into this new market to identify healthcare professionals for future collaborations and business opportunities .  They also recognized X as the perfect social media platform for deeper insights.

The effort started with the online oral health space — GSK’s largest category at £2.7B in sales for fiscal year 2020. The goal was to capture interests among experts in the oral health space and determine the relationships between stakeholders. For example, during COVID-19, hygienists were more active and engaged on X than dentists. Due to the nature of their job, hygienists were at a much higher risk for infection — so they went online to give guidance on what was safe to do given the situation.  


The team at GSK knew that healthcare professions are well-represented on X. In order to tap into that data source, they turned to Meltwater — a platform with 10 years’ experience streamlining X’s breadth of information. 

Using Meltwater’s search operators, GSK could specifically filter those who disclosed relevant professions in their bios and posts. Then, they expanded the search with specific keywords and phrases relevant to online dialogue in the field. Additional filters helped them zero in on organic conversations and trends across X, while cutting out irrelevant posts, reposts, and post replies.


With the implementation of Meltwater's search operators, GSK saw a decrease in research turnaround time from 2 months to about 2-3 weeks. This report was formerly a time-intensive and bespoke process, which became more streamlined with the new operators. With less time spent on analysis, GSK was able to effectively reach 2.3K healthcare professionals. 

Dentists and hygienists proactively post information for their followers and respond to individual questions, serving as the voice of reason for those inquiring about dental procedures.  For this reason, positioning them as influencers provides people with a trustworthy source of healthcare knowledge. 

The saved search library in Meltwater Explore was a vital tool that gave GSK precision data from an on-demand community of healthcare professionals on X. It allowed for them to gather leading insights from young and more digitally-savvy professionals as they move from their healthcare training to become the next big players in the real world. The result was a blueprint that they’ve successfully applied across their 20+ US brands to help create groups of healthcare professionals for potential business partnership opportunities. 

Source: Meltwater Explore, Jan 2020 - Feb 2021, retrieved March 2021.

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