Scientists Singin’ on YouTube; Who’s Representin’ for Biotech?

July 29, 2011 – 2:06 pm | By Trista Morrison | No comments yet

When I was blogging for BNET, one of my favorite posts chronicled the hilarious battle of the bands being waged between laboratory supply companies on YouTube.

And it got me thinking: why do lab supply firms get to have all the fun?

You’ve got Roche AG’s diagnostic division using a Motley-Poison-Whitesnake style rock anthem and power ballad to promote its xCELLigence cellular analysis system. And there’s Bio-Rad Laboratories Inc., the forefathers of funniness, with their “We Are the World” tribute to PCR and my personal favorite, the Village People spoof “GTCA.”


But who’s representin’ for biotech? Please post in the comments if you know of any funny biotech videos. The closest thing I could find was this promo about the troubles with existing glaucoma regimens. And it wasn’t from Genentech Inc. or Allergan Inc. It was a promo for Lumenis Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty.

The issue may have less to do with the lack of social media guidance for drug-makers and more to do with reaching your target audience. (See BioWorld Today, July 20, 2011.)

According to Richard Milne, digital marketing director at Life Technologies Corp., lab supply firms are selling largely into academic and government research environments, and there are “lots of relatively early scientists in these businesses.” Younger scientists tend to be more receptive to this type of outreach, as evidenced by the videos they create themselves (check out this Lady Gaga remake from Baylor College of Medicine).

[Note: Life Tech has some pretty funny videos, too. Our favorites are the LEGO animation build-it rap and 007-style short “Live and Let Amplify.”]

There’s also the fact that most biotechs are focused on treating debilitating diseases, which can make the integration of comedy into a marketing campaign difficult. But who knows – maybe as the older demographic becomes more tech savvy, we’ll see some of the biotechs who are already active in the world of apps crank out some videos.

To view all of these videos AND MORE of BioWorld’s favorites, check out the “Best Singing Scientists” playlist on our YouTube channel.


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