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  • Delivering insights for optimal positioning of a new pharma brand
    • 08/26/15
    • Health
    • Market Opportunities and Innovation
    • Global
    • English

    Delivering insights for optimal positioning of a new pharma brand

    GfK's proprietary framework gave the client strategic guidance about how it could take ownership of a first-line treatment market.

  • Delivering insights for optimal positioning of a new pharma brand
    • 08/26/15
    • Health
    • Market Opportunities and Innovation
    • Belgium
    • English

    Delivering insights for optimal positioning of a new pharma brand

    The company wished to maximize the potential of its new and legacy dermatology brands.
    The goal: To take ownership of the first-line treatment market.

  • Delivering insights for optimal positioning of a new pharma brand
    • 08/26/15
    • Health
    • Market Opportunities and Innovation
    • Singapore
    • English

    Delivering insights for optimal positioning of a new pharma brand

    The company wished to maximize the potential of its new and legacy dermatology brands.
    The goal: To take ownership of the first-line treatment market.

  • Delivering insights for optimal positioning of a new pharma brand
    • 08/26/15
    • Health
    • Market Opportunities and Innovation
    • United Kingdom
    • English

    Delivering insights for optimal positioning of a new pharma brand

    The company wished to maximize the potential of its new and legacy dermatology brands.
    The goal: To take ownership of the first-line treatment market.

  • Delivering insights for optimal positioning of a new pharma brand
    • 08/26/15
    • Health
    • Market Opportunities and Innovation
    • United States
    • English

    Delivering insights for optimal positioning of a new pharma brand

    The company wished to maximize the potential of its new and legacy dermatology brands.
    The goal: To take ownership of the first-line treatment market.

  • Breakfast moment insights deliver business benefits
    • 08/26/15
    • Health
    • Market Opportunities and Innovation
    • Global
    • English

    Breakfast moment insights deliver business benefits

    GfK's qualitative and quantitative research gives Belgian retailers and manufacturers compelling insights into what happens at the breakfast table each morning.

  • Breakfast moment insights deliver business benefits
    • 08/26/15
    • Health
    • Market Opportunities and Innovation
    • Singapore
    • English

    Breakfast moment insights deliver business benefits

    The company wished to maximize the potential of its new and legacy dermatology brands.
    The goal: To take ownership of the first-line treatment market.

  • Breakfast moment insights deliver business benefits
    • 08/26/15
    • Health
    • Market Opportunities and Innovation
    • United Kingdom
    • English

    Breakfast moment insights deliver business benefits

    The company wished to maximize the potential of its new and legacy dermatology brands.
    The goal: To take ownership of the first-line treatment market.

    • 08/23/15
    • Health
    • Global
    • English

    Five steps for optimizing your marketing investments in an increasingly digitalized multi-channel health market

    The number of touchpoints your stakeholders have with brands is ever-expanding, from traditional to digital and beyond. Successful brands use positive and memorable experiences to connect and build long-term relationships with customers like healthcare professionals (HCPs) that are foundational for future market success. So how do you ensure success for your brand?

         

      1. 1. Understand in which context the brand communication is happening

      2.  

    Besides measuring brand awareness and prescription behavior and preferences, it’s important to examine where the activity surrounding your brand communication is occurring. Whether it’s sales representatives’ visits, medical ads in physician journals or patient feedback on social media, coverage of the entire breadth of the multi-channel environment is essential.

       

    1. 2. Identify those touchpoints that have the strongest influence on the professionals’ prescribing behavior or recommendations

    2.  

    Across the paid, owned and earned activities mix, which ones are most impactful and have the strongest emotional imprint that drive a higher ROI? Which ones are underperforming? Besides distinguishing touchpoints that are more or less in control (paid, owned, earned), it’s important to also think of digital versus non-digital touchpoints or activities related to patients versus HCP target audience and so forth.

       

    1. 3. Understand the impact of each brand experience point and its implications – memorability can be good and bad

    2.  

    Measuring touchpoint reach is not enough to understand impact. As any experience (sales rep visit, patient feedback, congress, and other points of contact) leaves an emotional trace, there is a need for innovative measures. That is why in most health brand tracking studies GfK calculates a ConX score for each touchpoint. From a marketing perspective, it is of interest which HCPs had a memorable and positive experience and which had a memorable but negative experience. This score enables you to compare the experience of your touchpoints relative to your competition. Recent studies in health show better differentiation between touchpoints and brands with the ConX score than standard analysis.

       

    1. 4. Don’t underestimate the importance of measuring the changing customer experience over time

    2.  

    GfK has a similar approach to the ConX score with the more recently introduced RBX metric, which stands for the “recent brand experience.” It measures the dynamic reality of changing customer experiences over time. Any significant evolution on this indicator invites an in-depth analysis of each touchpoint experience.

       

    1. 5. Ensure your metrics capture a 360-degree perspective of your patient’s or the physician’s experiences with your brand

    2.  

    Recent health studies where both ConX and RBX metrics were captured, especially in more complicated therapeutic areas like oncology where you might have several therapy lines including branded, generic and drug combination therapies, show a clear and better differentiation between brands compared to traditional metrics only. Both metrics combined will help you achieve a comprehensive picture of the physician’s (or patient’s) experiences with your brand.

    With this knowledge you can determine whether you have created a positive emotional imprint with the HCPs and to what extent this is effectively driving your targeted business outcomes.

    For further information, contact Jan Guse.

    • 08/21/15
    • Health
    • Global
    • English

    Uncovering the emotional components of brand equity in health research

    It’s really no surprise that physicians’ decisions on drug choices are not reached through rational thinking exclusively. Although healthcare professionals (HCPs) will tell you that facts determine their decisions, we all know that emotional and social effects play a crucial role as well. That’s why you might want your ATU tracker to move beyond measuring only awareness, trial and usage to offering insights for a better understanding of brand equity. The problem is that most ATUs track brand health by measuring intended behavior or using an index that combines both measures. These more traditional brand KPIs often fail to differentiate between brands, do not provide valid information on the emotional and social bonds HCPs form with brands and provide only limited information on a brand’s future potential. Thus there is a need for more sophisticated and holistic brand health metrics. What is essential is a valid equity evaluation. Further on in this article, we’ll discuss the importance of distinguishing latent and active brand equity.

    Recently, we instituted what we call customer brand relationships (CBR). Based on a well-proven qualitative research technique that uses metaphors, CBR unveils how consumers form relationships with brands. This new metric focuses on nine relationship types that can be clustered in three classes: strong relationship types, weak ones and those at risk.

     

    We assumed that physicians also develop relationships with specific prescription drugs. Obviously, emotions and social elements play an important role in their choices. Therefore, our metaphorical approach might also be used to measure the future potential of branded prescription drugs. To prove the concept in the health Rx world, we initiated a global validation study among physicians in a competitive category with newly launched “me-too” brands. Despite clinical similarities, strong preferences existed for different brands. The objective was to understand the underlying equities of the brands by exploring the preferences and relationship strengths physicians have with brands. The clear outcome was that strong relationship types are associated with higher prescription levels and market shares across countries and categories.Because of these findings, we applied the approach both in the Rx and OTC markets.

    In more complicated scenarios, where different types of treatment options are available (e.g., oncology where you might have branded therapies, generic and combination treatment options), the evidence is clear: There is a strong correlation between intensity of relationships with treatments and prescription behavior across different therapeutic areas and the applied technique helps uncover differences in brand bonding based on emotional elements.

    Our global R&D process is utilized among physicians only to “translate” the current set of relationship types into those that resonate better with the healthcare market. Based on a survey with 600 US and UK healthcare professionals and brands from six different prescription drug categories, we identified nine healthcare-specific relationship types.

    The importance of distinguishing latent and active brand equity

    By combining CBR with traditional and well-proven brand KPIs like brand preference, new brand KPIs can be built with a proven link to future business outcomes. Active brand equity, in this context measuring the number of HCPs with strong relationships and preferences for a specific brand, signals to what degree the brand has a potential to increase loyalty. Latent brand equity, measuring the number of HCPs with strong relationships but preference for other brands, illustrates the brand’s potential to be used more often in the future. Both KPIs together measure the brands potential to grow further in the future and generate a greater number of prescriptions.

     

    This approach is based on emotional connections consumers, or in the health context for example, HCPs or patients form with brands. It’s a crucial stepping stone to creating new strategies and prioritizing marketing activities that help improve the strength of relationships, thereby resulting in long-term brand equity.

    This article was co-authored by Jan Guse in Health.

    For more information, contact Oliver Hupp.

    • 08/16/15
    • Health
    • Global
    • English

    Why relevance drives benchmarking in health and not only database size

    When tracking your brand health, you want to ensure that your long-term brand performance will be ahead of the competition’s. This requires a comparison to competitor products and a sound understanding and interpretation in the context of a new, more relationship-oriented economy.

    Benchmarking the traditional KPIs on product uptake, such as awareness, trial and usage, seems like common sense, whether based on a small or huge database. However, to make it more relevant in a changing market with an increasing number of touchpoints, it’s important to capture new relevant measures of the brand experience and relationship economy in these benchmarking exercises as well.

    In 2014 we started a big initiative to build a knowledge base integrating traditional measures of brand and customer research with new and more relevant measures of the brand experience and relationship economy, like XP ConX, to assess touchpoint performance and CBR measuring brand value.

    The CBR approach reflects the strengths of relationships HCPs or consumers have with brands (the emotional link). Furthermore it integrates intentions like preference via the latent and active equity measures (the behavioral link). When these two perspectives are combined, it becomes highly diagnostic.

    Today the knowledge base includes the data of more than half a million respondents across all regions – Europe, North America, Latin America and Asia Pacific – as well as across many industries, such as automotive, consumer goods, technology and of course health. This includes both consumer healthcare and RX brands. And besides the benchmarking opportunities, the database allows for cross-market analysis; i.e., an assessment of what channels or combination of channels works best in a specific market.

    Analysis on the knowledge base data has shown that positive memorable brand experiences strongly drive the building of brand relationships. And with the integration of traditional KPIs (such as awareness, usage, consideration and preference) with brand experience and brand relationship measures, like ConX and CBR, we are able to explain 74% of the variance in market share data of brands.

    In the RX part of the health market, brand relationships are slightly different when compared to other industries. This is due to the higher rational product involvement of all stakeholders involved in a decision (either a physician writing a prescription or a patient taking medication), while the brand relationship profiles in consumer healthcare look much more similar to the profiles for consumer goods brands. Therefore, we are currently in the process of “translating” the current set of relationship types into those that resonate even to a greater degree with the healthcare market.

    Although the database is expanding rapidly, within the consumer healthcare space already over 10 different need states are covered, while in Rx over 10 different indication areas are captured. This allows for more indication- or discipline-specific benchmarking as well.

    When combining data on brand preferences and brand relationships based on CBR, the brand equity can be further unraveled into latent and active brand equity. Also for the health market, this metric is captured in the knowledge base for benchmarking purposes. It will signal the direction that your health brand is going. Further driver analyses might then help you identify opportunities for driving latent into active brand equity.

    This article was co-authored by Kathrin Kissel, Susanna Meyer and Oliver Hupp in Health.

    For further information, please contact Jan Guse.

    • 08/14/15
    • Health
    • Global
    • English

    Health economic assessment of ultra-orphan medicine Soliris finally published

    Earlier this year, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) published its recommendation on Soliris¹ (eculizumab, from Alexion), an ultra-orphan drug, that is the first medicine to be assessed under their new Highly Specialised Technologies (HST) program. The focus was on Soliris’ treatment for aHUS, a very rare, life-threatening condition. And the recommendation was a culmination of 7.5 years and complicated history.

    Background

    Atypical haemolytic uremic syndrome (aHUS) causes blood clots to form in small blood vessels throughout the body. This can damage vital organs, such as the kidneys, brain and heart. Without Soliris, patients typically have plasma therapy and/or dialysis and/or kidney or kidney/liver transplants. Prognosis is poor. Most patients are identified during childhood, and many do not live to adulthood. Currently, there are an estimated 140 to 200 aHUS patients in the UK.

    Soliris typically costs around £340,000 for the first year of treatment of aHUS and £327,000 per year thereafter. According to the Summary of Product Characteristics, treatment is for life. Evidence to date suggests that with Soliris patients may live a near-normal lifespan.

    Soliris for aHUS treatment

    Historically, NICE did not assess ultra-orphan diseases, which were commissioned centrally by the NHS. In the mid-2000s the Advisory Group on National Specialised Services (AGNSS) was established to assess and make recommendations on these drugs. AGNSS used different assessment criteria, and placed much less weight on cost per quality-adjusted life year (QALY) than NICE. After some delay Soliris was referred to AGNSS for assessment. In 2012 AGNSS recommended that Soliris be funded by the NHS in England, but ministers were worried about the budgetary impact. Rather than accept the recommendation, they referred Soliris to NICE for further assessment. At the same time, AGNSS was folded into NICE to become the HST program.

    In the meantime, in 2013 NHS England established an interim specialized commissioning program for Soliris for some patients. This was in response to pressure (not least from the House of Commons) that patients were dying for lack of access to treatment. It is believed that about 70 patients are currently being treated.

    The Soliris guidance is the first to emerge from their HST program – a mere seven and a half years after it was first licensed. Such is the power of bureaucratic delay!

    Committee’s key points of guidance

    Eculizumab, within its marketing authorization, is recommended for funding for aHUS only if all the following arrangements are in place:

       

    • coordination of eculizumab use through an expert centre
    • monitoring systems to record the number of people with a diagnosis of aHUS, and the number who have eculizumab, and the dose and duration of treatment
    • a national protocol for starting and stopping eculizumab for clinical reasons
    • a research program with robust methods to evaluate when stopping treatment or dose adjustment might occur.
    •  

    This is not as onerous as it might sound, since all the elements except the research program are already in place. NHS England was actively involved in the process and has said that “it is able to meet all the conditions for reimbursement except for the research program, which will require longer to establish.”

    The Assessment Committee accepted that “eculizumab represents a step change in the treatment of patients with aHUS and could be considered a significant innovation for a disease with a high unmet clinical need.” They took this view despite the “limitations in the evidence base, particularly because of the lack of randomized trial evidence.” Evidence came from Phase 2 trials – the largest including 41 patients, and in total 100 patients – and a retrospective observational study of 30 patients.

    What clearly swayed their decision was the evidence from clinical experts and patients and their representatives, who were strongly in favor and stressed the lack of alternative therapies - hence the “step-change” conclusion. The contribution of a well-organized patient interest group and strong clinical support is clear.

    While the company and the Evidence Review Group both calculated cost-effectiveness, this information has not been published, since the company deems it to be confidential. Substantial QALY gains are recognized, but there are no cost-per-QALY figures, and any figures would clearly be beyond anything NICE would normally accept.

    Budget impact clearly was a key factor in the decision

    While estimates varied, the expectation was that the cost to the NHS in England would be in the range of £68m (patient organization’s estimate) to £82m (Evidence Review Group’s estimate) in year five. The company also produced a (presumably lower) estimate but would not allow its publication. To put this into context, NHS England spent £156m on high-cost drugs under the specialized commissioning program in 2013/4, and highlighted that a potential 50% increase in this figure could only mean withdrawing funds elsewhere, in the context of flat-funding plans for the NHS overall. Finding ways to minimize budget impact is clearly behind the recommendations on starting and stopping rules and research on the potential to adjust (i.e. reduce) doses.

    Assessing the cost

    It is clear that the committee reached this recommendation despite its exasperation with Alexion. Comments appear throughout the document about information redacted as commercially confidential. Though Alexion clearly challenged the committee’s decision to assess affordability, the committee robustly defends its position.

    Wales and Scotland are not included in the HST recommendation which apply to England only

    It should be noted that this recommendation applies only to England. Alexion declined to submit to both the Scottish Medicines Consortium and the All-Wales Medicines Strategy Group, and in both territories Soliris is “not recommended”. According to the patient group, two patients in Scotland are being treated under Individual Patient Treatment Requests, but this is a bureaucratic and uncertain procedure.

    For further information or advice, please contact Tim Fitzgerald or Jim Furniss.

    References

    [1] www.nice.org.uk/guidance/hst1/resources/eculizumab-for-treating-atypical-haemolytic-uraemic-syndrome-1394895848389

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