Marketing in the Pharma Industry with Eli Lilly

Eli Lilly representatives, Natasha Sinha and Oscar Grau, speaking with AMA Members about marketing at Eli Lilly.

Something great about Marketing is how needed it is in every industry, including healthcare and pharmaceuticals! Did you grow up wanting to become a doctor? Or cure diseases? Or help people? Even in marketing, you could do all these things! This past week, AMA had the opportunity to speak with Natasha Sinha and Oscar Grau, who currently work in marketing in the pharmaceutical industry at Eli Lilly!

Let’s Meet Our Guest Speakers!

Speaking primarily about her personal career experiences and how she fell in love with market research, UT McCombs graduate Natasha Sinha works as an Associate for Immunology Market Research at Eli Lilly. She was even an Eli Lilly Intern! And marketing and international business graduate Oscar Grau currently works as an Associate Consulting for talent acquisition, global recruiting, and staffing at Eli Lilly.

What is Eli Lilly?

Eli Lilly was founded in 1876 by Colonel Eli Lilly, who was passionate about creating high-quality medicines to create an era of more reliable medications for all people. For generations, Eli Lilly’s employees have followed the value of “Take what you find here and make it better and better.” Every aspect of their business is dedicated to serving people, starting with those who need the medications Eli Lilly produces and extending them to health care professionals, employees, and communities. Their headquarters are located in Indianapolis, Indiana, with over 34,000 employees worldwide and 43 office locations across 33 countries like France, Germany, and Japan!

Eli Lilly is committed to uniting caring with discovery to create medicines that make life better for people worldwide. Natasha and Oscar emphasized the importance of respecting Eli Lilly’s values of integrity, excellence, and respect for people. 

Additionally, Eli Lilly has ranked high in diversity in patient groups, employee resource groups, and launching bilingual healthcare resources. Employee Journeys are communities of employees who have joined efforts for field base or corporate initiatives. Examples of journeys include Latino Journey, Asian Journey, and Women Journey. According to DiversityInc., Eli Lilly was ranked third of the Top 50 Companies for Diversity!

“By understanding our employees’ journeys, we’re paving the way for more inclusion and career growth for everyone-and more innovation for our patients. And we’ve just begun.”

David A. Ricks (Chairman & CEO, Eli Lilly)
Eli Lilly’s headquarters are located in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Lilly Marketing

Lilly Marketing is the catalyst for delivering unparalleled customer experiences for the people they serve. Their marketing strategy centers around these three steps:

  1. Enable Marketing
  2. Develop Products
  3. Build Brands
  4. Create [local] Experiences

Natasha gave insight into the different focuses that one could take in the marketing department at Eli Lilly. She was also interested in science but didn’t decide to major in anything related. Fortunately, she got to focus her marketing career at Eli Lilly in any one of the established focuses: 

  • Immunology 
  • Pain
  • Oncology 
  • Neuro-degeneration 

These different focuses were something that excited Natasha as a recent marketing graduate. She had the freedom to move from different focuses or participate in rotational position opportunities. Because of her inquisitive nature, Natasha became interested in marketing research which primarily focuses on:

  • Lilly Brands
  • Business Strategy 
  • Global and Local Tactics
  • Customer Understanding
  • Research and Analytics
  • Knowledge Integration

Eli Lilly’s Marketing Capabilities include: 

  • Market understanding 
  • Customer insights
  • Brand strategy and planning
  • Customer experience
  • Data and management 

In addition to general marketing strategies, brand marketing, which means promoting a brand’s products or services to elevate the brand as a whole, is also important to Eli Lilly. Their marketing processes include:

  • New Product Planning (Develop Products)
    • Provide the foundational understanding of living with a disease that shapes the medicine
    • Provide context and strategic counsel to medical colleagues
  • Global Brand Teams (Build Brands)
    • Unlock and articulate true human needs of target customer
    • Infuse science with emotion
    • Provide strategic focus to guide the development of experiences
    • Collaborate with affiliates and regions
  • Affiliate Brand Teams/Regions (Create Experiences)
    • Robust local understanding
    • Customize, construct, and launch experiences
    • Short planning horizons and rapid feedback 
    • Valuable resource for in-market realities
  • Central Marketing Organization (Enable Marketing)
    • Steward of Lilly’s Marketing capabilities, knowledge, and professional culture
    • Resources for specific marketing expertise
    • Advancing promising trends in marketing 
    • Synchronizing cross-functional transformation

What does a Lilly Market Researcher do? 

Natasha Sinha also spoke about her experience as a Lilly Market Researcher. A market researcher strategizes campaigns efficiently, tracks trends, and works with the brand marketing team to understand problems, find solutions, translate them to suppliers/products, and conduct studies. This career is perfect for curious, communicative individuals who love psychology or influencing people and want to learn more about customers’ perspectives. They are essentially the messenger between the consumer and company.

With the research that Eli Lilly has conducted, they manufactured and distributed the Salk Polio Vaccine in 1955, introduced the first commercially available insulin in 1986, and recently have administered a Covid-19 antibody treatment. Currently, Eli Lilly researchers are developing treatments for Alzheimer’s, Diabetes, and Cancers (Oncology).

Eli Lilly Marketing Opportunities

Eli Lilly established an excellent program for its new marketing hires. The Lilly Marketing Academy involves two 6-month marketing rotations that include different experiences to ensure they are exposed to various aspects of the department and classroom-based and online training. Additionally, employees are given resources such as career coaching, mentorship, and a strong peer network! Recruiting all begins in Fall 2022 for Internships and Full-Time Opportunities at: and

Key Takeaways

During Natasha and Oscar’s presentation, they offered many pieces of advice in starting and continuing your career journey. These include: 

  • Finding your values and purpose and what impact you want to make with what you do 
  • Aligning your work with your passions
  • Taking advantage of mentorship opportunities (Ask questions and don’t be afraid to reach out to professionals who have careers related to what you are interested in or similar paths!)
  • Remember to make interpersonal groups and join organizations in large companies or even on campus!
  • Building a network through a support system and connections (something that Eli Lilly helps its employees with!)
  • Advocating for yourself and creating mutually beneficial relationships based on mentorship and trust.


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