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Solving for Rubik’s Cube of Portfolio Marketing

Rubick's cubeSince our founding in 2006, Return on Focus’ Evidence-Based Marketing approach has appealed to specialty care and biotechnology companies looking to mirror the evidence-based medicine philosophy already established on the clinical side of the house. This has alignment in thinking has enabled us to garner a wealth of experience in Oncology and Immunology over the years.

Within these two areas, a common marketing challenge is how to effectively optimize the ‘pipeline in a product.’ A molecule that has the benefits of demonstrating activity across a broad spectrum of indications also poses the challenge of serving a diverse set of stakeholders with a product profile that doesn’t perform identically across all indications. Avastin in Oncology and Remicade in Immunology are the typical illustrations.

The marketing goal for these ‘pipeline in a product’ brands is to successfully plan for and optimize the portfolio through astute marketing. To assist Clients in visualizing the challenge and the opportunity, we use a Rubik’s cube metaphor. The three dimensions of the cube most commonly represent the following:

  1. Disease dimension – the range of diseases for which the product may be applicable
  2. Line of therapy dimension – the likely applications by line of therapy – 1L, 2L, 3L relapse/refractory, etc.
  3. Choice Drivers dimension – key physician, patient, and/or treatment variables that drive product selection

By mapping out your portfolio marketing challenge in this manner, you derive the following benefits:

  1. Dimensionalize the complexity of the task for yourself
  2. Communicate the complexity of the task to the organization using a simple, well-known and globally accepted metaphor
  3. Plan for individual pieces of the cube (e.g., CLL-3L-Poor Performance Status)
  4. Identify the diverse competitive set that exists within each of the cube pieces
  5. Prioritize common variables within the cube (e.g., a common choice driver your brand excels at, which is present in multiple points within the cube

Although you can’t solve for all scenarios within the cube immediately, our initial step is getting a grip on the size of the cube and winnowing down the number of scenarios so you have a clear idea of the number of colors in play. Portfolio Marketing, like the Rubik’s Cube, looks incredibly daunting when everything is still jumbled, but appears much easier to tackle when the colors are all aligned. Let us help you solve your portfolio puzzle.

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