October marks 4 years since the birth of Return on Focus. This being my second entrepreneurial endeavor made me more sensitive to the experience and more introspective about my learnings to date. Much like parents who have children both early then again later in life, the second time around you have a better handle on the mechanics and an appreciation of the experience.
Reflecting on my learnings across almost 100+ client projects, yielded 5 key takeaways:
- Employing too many tactics, leaving most sub-optimally funded – one likely culprit could be the explosion in the size of brand team now . . . everyone has to have their own stuff.
- Focus on the execution rather than the foundation – admit it, putting more stuff in the vessel is more fun than figuring out what type of vessel is needed.
- Going after everyone, not just the optimal someones –somehow a full on assault from all sides makes more sense than establishing a beachhead and then broadening out. . . thankfully no biopharma marketers were involved in D-Day.
- Losing sight that Rx success begins and ends with the physician – more bluntly, an over-reliance on patient marketing to save the day for poorly developed and executed professional strategies.
- Tradition of doing things traditionally – the fact that we still crank out detail aids that we know field representatives aren’t using amazes me.
With the majority of our Clients facing 2011 marketing budget declines ranging from 15% to 30%, a good starting point would be to examine these five insights for application to your own current circumstances.
For ongoing pearls and perils, you can follow me on Twitter @danreinhardt