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Using the Internet at Patent Expiry: Creating Brand Loyalty Through Online Tools

   by Datamonitor

    05 February, 2003


   Available for download now

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Editorial description(s):

Download Description
Introduction The current R&D productivity crisis in the pharmaceutical industry combined with the number of blockbusters facing patent expiry over the next five years are forcing companies to protect their current sales. This Brief gives an overview of the options available to companies facing patent expiry of a key drug and analyzes the use of online tools as part of each generic defense strategy. Scope Coverage: US and Europe Case studies highlight successful online defense strategies Reasons to Purchase Understand which strategies pharmaceutical companies can adopt to defend sales as generic competition enters the market Identify the point in a drug’s lifecycle that each strategy should be implemented Assess how the Internet can be used to support these generic defense strategies Report Highlights Pharmaceutical companies must use online and offline channels to create consumer brand loyalty throughout the lifecycle of a drug. This patent defense option must be implemented at an early stage to be successful, unlike other options, such as regulatory extensions, that can be employed as a drug is approaching patent expiry. Direct-to-consumer websites serve as a key online tool providing they are well designed to create continued use. Launching a new formulation or a follow-up product requires the use of marketing strategies that are used in traditional drug launches. However, they must be geared towards facilitating the switching of patients from the original product, as well as capturing new patients. eDetailing is a key online tool that companies should use to contact the widest range of physicians. It provides comprehensive information about the new drug, including clinical trial data and prescribing information. The use of online tools by physicians is a key part of their working practice, with 82% of surveyed physicians in the US using the Internet for work-related purposes. However, there are several online tools that physicians would like to use but are not utilizing at present. Pharmaceutical companies can gain a competitive advantage at patent expiry by fulfilling these unmet needs while supporting their patent defense strategies.

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