Navigating the Labyrinth of Brand Launch: A Guide for Small Pharma


For the Marketing function in many large pharmaceutical companies, the launch of a new product, particularly a new brand, is an exciting and frenetic time. Often the Brand Manager has been selected from a pool of high achieving sales representatives who have cycled into the home office and cut their teeth on Product Management supporting marketed brands. The launch of a new product will be closely scrutinized by senior management, and the relative success or failure of a brand launch can make or break a Marketer’s career. Fortunately for most Brand Managers put in this position in large pharma, this new brand will already come with a wealth of market insight and strategic planning. For most of these companies, market insights have significantly informed the clinical development of a compound, particularly during Phase III trials, to ensure it can be effectively promoted and realize rapid adoption at launch. But what if you are one of those lonely souls in the small or midsize pharma environment where you represent the entire commercial function in support of developmental and new to market products? For you, there is no army of market research professionals or high-powered ad agencies or PR firms, all armed with data to inform your decision-making. So how do you tackle the challenges of ensuring that the Phase III trials will adequately support the commercial claims you will need to make to successfully position your product for rapid adoption at launch? And what if your focus is the development of compounds that your company will eventually sell or out-license? What role does market research play in helping you achieve your commercial objectives and fulfill the company’s strategy? How do you optimize your limited resources to ensure you are developing not just an NCE, but a viable, valuable commercial asset? Finding a partner who can support your strategic decision-making through identification, capture and interpretation of market and customer insights in real time can be critical to the success of small and midsize pharma as they seek to prepare their products for commercialization. In a series of blogs, we will be addressing three of the key challenges individuals in these situations face and how strategic market research can help inform impactful decision-making:

  1. Unmet need in the therapeutic area
  2. Positioning of the new product in existing treatment algorithms
  3. Messaging that supports desired use of the product

Visit our blog in the coming weeks for more on this topic. Image courtesy of Seongbin Im on Flickr Creative Commons