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    Majority of DTC Advertising Still Only Stimulates an ‘Inquiry’ NOT a Request – ROF Normative Update

    December 5, 2016

    Back in 2010, I authored a blog post using the patient data that my then 4-year old company had amassed challenging the conventional wisdom that direct-to-consumer advertising (DTCA) is effective at activating a brand request by patients exposed to the advertising. The research that we conducted at Return on Focus at the time uncovered a nuanced, but important distinction in describing the actions taken by patients as a result of being exposed to a DTC advertisement. Our patient research showed that almost 80% of patients characterize their actions as an inquiry, not a request. I thought it would be a good idea to re-test this hypothesis six years later to see if we, as an industry, had made any headway in changing this behavior.

    DTC Advertising ActionsLooking at our updated data set, it appears that the more things change the more they stay the same in biopharma. The empowered, branded requests that we all want to believe our campaigns are evoking still aren’t occurring despite our best efforts. How can I be so sure? In an examination of seven different disease states, the answer most often selected in our research remains “Ask MD about Product X, but listen if he/she did not think it was right for me.” (more…)

    Six Essential Elements of Successful Specialty Brand Support Services

    September 30, 2016

    Number SixIt seems like every new product launching today is a specialty pharmaceutical that requires access via a network of specialty pharmacies. This access system introduces a hurdle not only for the patient and prescriber, but also for the manufacturer – streamlining the process from prescription generation by the physician to medication acquisition by the patient.

    Having completed a number of marketing effectiveness analyses on specialty product patient support programs, ROF has identified 6 essential elements to maximize patient acquisition while minimizing negative feedback. (more…)

    Why Rare Disease Patients/Caregivers Require More Manufacturer Support Than Cancer Patients?

    May 16, 2016

    An interesting question recently arose from our launch readiness work for a rare disease client. The question was “Do rare disease patients and caregivers really require more manufacturer support than cancer patients?” My immediate answer was “Yes”, which lead to some disbelieving faces. If you think about it, I understand the skepticism. For example:

    Are rare disease patients sicker or do they fighter harder for their life than a cancer patient? – No.

    Is it any harder for rare disease patients and caregivers to afford their care than cancer patients? – No, probably not.

    Why then do I say that rare disease patients and caregivers require more manufacturer support? There were two main reasons supporting my belief. (more…)

    Overcoming Physician Decision Fatigue

    April 5, 2016

    Busy DoctorOur industry is making significant progress in many therapeutic areas, especially with the promise of immuno-therapies and personalized medicine. However, even with these advances, prescribing inertia or as one client calls it ‘muscle memory prescribing’ continues to be a significant competitive threat to new product launches. I believe the reason for this inertia is “decision fatigue.”

    Most marketers lack a sincere appreciation for the number of prescribing or prescribing-like decisions that the average physician has to make in a single day. The processes that Clients traditionally engage in to develop or examine positioning and marketing strategy often look at prescribing without this important context, even with the ubiquitous multiple page buying process in hand. (more…)

    Most Important Detail Isn’t Delivered by Your Field Force

    January 29, 2016

    Doctor & Patient TalkingThe importance of proper patient identification at launch cannot be underestimated. I previously wrote about it being the key to a successful launch from the perspective of physician marketing and targeting. Yet, the biggest impact proper patient identification has on the physician is not from your marketing efforts at all, but from an invisible detail that most biotechnology companies don’t even measure – the feedback from the patients initially prescribed your product after launch.

    What we see is that marketers obsess over the volume of scripts on a weekly or even daily basis, but virtually pay no attention to the attributes of those early patients until it’s too late.

    The patient feedback comprised in this incredibly impactful invisible detail is based on two different types of evidence:

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