Glaxosmithkline's Marketing Strategy for Requip: A Case Study in Product Lifecycle Management

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Case Details:

Case Code : MKTG173
Case Length : 23 Pages
Period : 2002-2007
Pub Date : 2007
Teaching Note :Not Available
Organization : GlaxoSmithKline, Plc.
Industry : Pharmaceutical
Countries : USA, Europe

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

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Restless Marketing? Contd...

After the approval of the drug in the US, GSK's marketing of the drug revolved around direct-to-consumer advertising7 (DTC advertising) campaigns. The initial ads were disease awareness ads that did not mention the brand name of the drug. GSK followed this up with branded ads.

It also used key opinion leaders8 (KOLs), such as sleep specialists, to raise awareness about RLS and the scope for Requip among general practitioners9 (GPs). GSK's efforts to increase awareness of RLS and its efforts to get Requip approved for RLS got a lot of media attention, creating publicity for the disorder as well as the drug.

The results were spectacular. Requip's sales, which had been steady since its launch in 1997, grew significantly after its approval for the treatment of RLS. Requip sales in 2005 were 156 million, a growth of 34 percent over 2004.

In 2006, the sales increased further to 268 million. The growth in global sales was propelled by the growth in the US where sales increased from 53 million in 2004 to 176 million in 2006. Though the growth rate in sales of the drug also increased in Europe and the rest of the world, it was not as spectacular as in the US. GSK got regulatory approval for Adartrel for the treatment of RLS in France and the UK in 2004 and 2005 respectively. But it had to wait till mid-2006 to get the marketing approval in other European Union (EU) countries.

GSK said that getting the drug approved for RLS was an example of the importance it placed on product lifecycle (PLC) management10 of a brand...

 Excerpts >>

7] Direct-to-consumer advertising is the promotion of pharmaceutical products directly to the consumers' via media channels, such as, TV, radio, print, etc. As of April 2007, it was allowed only in the US and in New Zealand.

8] Key Opinion Leaders are physicians who influence their peers' medical practice, including but not limited to prescribing behavior. (Source: Terry Nugent, Director of Marketing, Medical Marketing Service, Inc.)

9] A general practitioner (also called family physician) is a doctor who provides primary care.

10] The Product Life Cycle (PLC) refers to the succession of stages (introduction, growth, maturity, and decline) a product goes through during its lifetime. PLC management is the succession of strategies adopted by the marketer in each stage of the PLC.


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