By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” Benjamin Franklin 

Companies which succeed in the launch environment of 2018 – 2023 will take four essential steps now to ensure they are launch-ready for the 4future environment, according to the IMS Health report “Launch excellence IV: a new launch environment”.

At a special IMS Health one-day event in Sydney this week, consultant Frederic Lefebvre urged pharmaceutical companies to plan well in advance of  a product launch, citing eight-in-10 products show how they are set to perform within six months of launch, while those that do poorly during this period rarely recover.

Crunching the numbers

In his presentation, Lefebvre explained the ideal preparation time for a successful product launch was five years in advance., The minimum time to plan for a new product launch ranges between two-to-three years, with the key phase in a product’s lifecycle being the launch itself, while the window of opportunity for a product to demonstrate its success falls within the first six months post-launch.

Getting it right

With the increasing trend towards more specialised and smaller launches, the importance of getting the launch right is paramount.

Pharmaceutical representatives have long acted as doctors primary resource for information regarding new launches. However increasing regulatory restrictions on representatives’ access to doctors, along with the rise of internet and social media technologies, have resulted in doctors and patients turning to other forms of media and different sources for information.

This shift, along with increasingly restrictive payer environments, is forcing pharmaceutical companies to find new ways to demonstrate product value over the existing standard of care.

Four steps to success

According to the IMS Health study, those companies which will succeed in the launch environment of 2018 – 2023 will take the following four essential steps now to ensure they are launch ready for the environment of the future.

Keep Calm

Step 1:  Build a detailed stakeholder map specific to the therapeutic area and country, highlighting the current environment, and anticipated key changes and events for ongoing observation that will influence the stakeholder environment.

Step 2: Explore novel approaches to pricing and market access.

Step 3: Create a real-world evidence plan alongside the pre-and post-launch clinical development plan.

Step 4: Consider the patient segmentation for launch, in order to set product performance expectations with both investors and payers.


 “In preparing for battle I’ve always found that plans are useless, but planning is essential.”

(Dwight Eisenhower)

To discuss how VIVA! Communications can assist you with planning your product launch contact us today.

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