Group DCA Meta Analysis White Paper - Impact of E-Detailing On Physician Prescribing
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Group DCA Meta Analysis White Paper - Impact of E-Detailing On Physician Prescribing

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In order to gain a better understanding of the benefits of a relatively new and increasingly popular digital promotion medium, we analyzed over two dozen e-detailing programs conducted by Group DCA, a ...

In order to gain a better understanding of the benefits of a relatively new and increasingly popular digital promotion medium, we analyzed over two dozen e-detailing programs conducted by Group DCA, a leading provider of digital promotional services to the pharmaceutical industry. The results were unequivocal:

- E-detailing is very successful in persuading physicians to prescribe.
-It is effective both for physicians who are heavily committed and for those who are relatively indifferent to the promoted product.
- It can convert non-prescribers of a product into prescribers.
- It generates a very high return on investment (ROI).
- There is a direct relationship between the magnitude of the investment in e-detailing and the magnitude of the resultant profits, allowing marketers to manage to profit targets.

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Group DCA Meta Analysis White Paper - Impact of E-Detailing On Physician Prescribing Group DCA Meta Analysis White Paper - Impact of E-Detailing On Physician Prescribing Document Transcript

  •      A  NEW  MEDIUM  COMES  OF  AGE:   An  Analysis  Of  The  Impact  Of  E-­‐Detailing   On  Physician  Prescribing             by   Patrick  J.  Miller,  Ph.D.   Executive  Vice  President   Clinical  Information  Network   pat.miller@clinicalinfonet.com   480-­‐320-­‐1009  
  • Executive  Summary  In  order  to  gain  a  better  understanding  of  the  benefits  of  a  relatively  new  and  increasingly  popular  digital  promotion  medium,  we  analyzed  over  two  dozen  e-­‐detailing  programs  conducted  by  Group  DCA,  a  leading  provider  of  digital  promotional  services  to  the  pharmaceutical  industry.    The  results  were  unequivocal:   E-­‐detailing  is  very  successful  in  persuading  physicians  to  prescribe.   It  is  effective  both  for  physicians  who  are  heavily  committed  and  for  those  who  are   relatively  indifferent  to  the  promoted  product.   It  can  convert  non-­‐prescribers  of  a  product  into  prescribers.   It  generates  a  very  high  return  on  investment  (ROI).   There  is  a  direct  relationship  between  the  magnitude  of  the  investment  in  e-­‐ detailing  and  the  magnitude  of  the  resultant  profits,  allowing  marketers  to  manage   to  profit  targets.    Background  The  past  few  years  have  been  unsettling  years  for  marketers  in  the  pharmaceutical  industry.    The  sales  resource  upon  which  they  have  relied  most  heavily,  the  outside  field  sales  representative,  has  dwindled  in  numbers  and  its  effectiveness  has  waned.    At  the  same  time,  advancing  information  technology  has  spawned  a  host  of  exciting,  but  relatively  untested,  new  alternatives.    While  the  industry  has  slowly  been  building  an  experience  base  with  the  new  media,  the  intuitive  sense  of  expected  return  that  marketers  have  long  enjoyed  with  their  older  sales  resources  is  still  lacking.  One  of  the  most  popular  of  the  new  selling  alternatives  is  e-­‐detailing.    In  a  typical  e-­‐detail,  a  physician  or  other  health  care  professional  is  invited,  using  any  of  the  bewildering  array  of  communication  channels  that  link  pharmaceutical  companies  and  their  targeted  customers,  to  visit  a  web  site  whereon  is  located  an  automated  presentation,  often  interactive,  on  a  topic  of  interest  to  the  customer.    Because  the  experience  can  take  place  at  a  time  and  place  of  the  physician’s  own  choosing  and  is  still  relatively  novel,  the  physician  is  likely  to  devote  substantially  more  time  and  pay  closer  attention  to  the  promotional  or  educational  message  provided  by  the  e-­‐detail  than  he  would  to  a  traditional  in-­‐office  visit  from  a  field  sales  representative.  
  • These  customer-­‐centric  attributes  have  made  e-­‐detailing  one  of  the  most  widely  used  of  the  new  media.    As  a  result,  a  fuller  understanding  of  its  impact  on  physician  prescribing  would  be  of  significant  value  to  marketers.    To  this  end,  a  comprehensive  analysis  was  undertaken  of  a  large  sample  of  over  two  dozen  programs  completed  by  Group  DCA,  an  industry  leading  provider  of  digital  media  services.    METHODOLOGY  Each  of  the  studies  included  in  this  analysis  was  examined  using  a  matched-­‐pair  test-­‐control  design.    The  pre-­‐treatment  period  used  to  establish  the  baseline  for  the  physician  matches  was  six  (6)  months.    Once  matching  equivalency  was  established,  any  post-­‐treatment  divergence  in  the  value  of  the  dependent  variable  between  the  test  and  control  physicians  could  be  attributed  to  the  treatment  –  in  this  case   1exposure  to  the  e-­‐detail.     0.9Figure  1  shows  the  results   0.8 NRxs per Physicianof  a  typical  program   0.7 0.6 TESTanalysis.    The  dependent   0.5variable  is  NRx  volume  per   0.4 CONTROLphysician.    Prior  to  the  e-­‐ 0.3 0.2detailing  experience,  the   0.1test  and  control   0 MTH MTH MTH MTH MTH MTH MTH MTH MTH MTH MTH MTH MTHphysicians  are  essentially   1 2 3 4 5 6 1 2 3 4 5 6 7identical.    After  the  e-­‐ 2 3 4 6 CONTROL MONTHS 1 TEST MONTHSdetailing  experience,  they  are  not.   FIGURE 1Of  course,  all  of  the  e-­‐detailing  programs  were  designed  to  meet  the  needs  of  Group  DCA’s  clients,  not  to  satisfy  the  requirements  of  an  experimental  design.    The  test  and  control  matches,  therefore,  were  established  post  hoc.    In  spite  of  this,  the  results  are  robust  and  the  interpretation  straightforward.    Projection,  the  analytical  attribute  most  sensitive  to  non-­‐randomness,  is  buffered,  to  some  extent,  by  the  large  sample  of  studies,  with  the  consequent  large  and  diverse  sample  of  physicians,  drawn  for  this  analysis.        
  • RESULTS  Rx  Impact  Table  1  displays  the  median  values  for  the  expected  and  observed  NRx   MEDIAN NRx VOLUMEvolumes.    The  difference  between   Expected Observed % Gainthese  values  is  the  NRx  volume   (without e - detail) (with e - detail)attributable  to  the  e-­‐details.    The  median  rather  than  the  average  was   1,412 2,298 +63%used  because  one  product  was  so  much  larger  than  any  other  tested  product  that  its  volume  introduced   Table  1  substantial  skew  into  the  calculation  of  the  mean.    Overall,  e-­‐detailing  produced  a  63%  increase  in  new  prescription  volume.      Figure  2  shows  the  average  volume  differences  by  month.    The  critical  message  conveyed  by   Figure  2  is  that  the  effect  of  the   e-­‐detailing  has  diminished  but   not  washed  out  by  the  end  of  the   measurement  period.     Consequently,  the  impact   reported  here  understates  the   actual  volume  return  attendant   upon  the  e-­‐detail.   Although  the  overall  prescription   impact  of  e-­‐detailing  is  quite   substantial,  the  distribution  of   the  impact  across  different   FIGURE 2 classes  of  prescribers  is,  perhaps,   even  more  impressive.    Most  pharmaceutical  companies  use  existing  prescribing  volume  as  a  criterion  in  selecting  promotional  targets.    Because  the  most  expensive  promotional  resources,  such  as  the  field  sales  force,  are  typically  reserved  for  the  highest  prescribing  deciles,  there  is  always  interest  in  the  ability  of  more  affordable  promotional  media  to  affect  the  prescribing  of  a  broader  array  of  prescriber  categories,  including  the  mid  and  lower  level  prescribing  deciles.    Figure  3  shows  the  proportion  of  the  e-­‐detailing  impact  that  is  generated  by  high  prescribers  (deciles  ten  through  eight),  mid  and  low  level  prescribers  (deciles  seven  through  one)  and  non-­‐prescribers.    As  
  • Figure  3  reveals,  e-­‐detailing  was   almost  equally  effective  in  generating   incremental  prescribing  regardless  of   the  prior  prescribing  level  of  the   physician.   The  effect  shown  in  Figure  3  is  of   particular  interest  in  the  case  of   physicians  who  had  not,  prior  to  the  e-­‐ detailing  experience,  been  persuaded   to  prescribe  the  product  at  all.     Several  of  the  programs  included  in   FIGURE 3 this  analysis  included  in  their  target  list  physicians  who  had  not  written  a  prescription  for  the  promoted  product  in  the  entire  six  month  pre-­‐test  period.    Figure  4  shows  the  impact  of  e-­‐detailing  on  these  physicians.    Fully   CONVERTED PHYSICIANS22%  of  the  test  doctors  –  incremental  to  their  matched  controls  -­‐  who  had  not  written  the  detailed  product  in  the  six  months  prior  to  e-­‐detailing  did  prescribe  the  product  in  the  months  afterward.  Profitability  As  might  be  expected  given  the  magnitude  of  the  incremental  prescribing  generated  by  e-­‐detailing   FIGURE 4programs,  such  programs  are  highly  profitable.    In  fact,  the  average  return  on  investment  across  all  programs  was  677%.    As  noted  above,  this   figure  is  conservative  and  understates  the   true  ROI.   If  the  overall  profitability  of  e-­‐detailing   programs  was  unsurprising,  the   relationship  between  profitably  and   program  size  was  completely  unexpected.     Programs  were  ranked  by  size  (cost)  and   divided  into  large  (largest  third  of   programs),  average  (middle  third),  and   small  (bottom  third).    As  Figure  5  shows,   FIGURE 5 the  large  programs  delivered  double  the  
  • profit  volume  of  average  programs  which,  in  turn,  provided  twice  the  profit  volume  of  small  programs.    CONCLUSIONS  Over  two  dozen  individual  e-­‐detailing  programs  provided  by  Group  DCA  were  examined  to  generate  insights  into  two  critical  aspects  of  e-­‐detailing.    The  critical  dimensions  were:  1.  the  prescription  impact  of  e-­‐detailing  and  2.  its  profitability.  Prescription  Impact:    The  ability  of  e-­‐detailing  to  stimulate  prescribing  was  both  remarkable  and  well  documented.    Across  products,  e-­‐detailing  produced  a  63%  increase  in  new  prescriptions  over  a  12-­‐month  period.    Substantial  increases  in  prescribing  occurred  regardless  of  the  level  of  the  physicians’  prescribing  volume  prior  to  the  e-­‐detailing  experience.    Indeed,  even  non-­‐prescribers  of  the  products  were  motivated  by  the  e-­‐detailing  to  offer  trial.      Profitability:    E-­‐detailing  is  a  highly  profitable  medium,  generating  returns  conservatively  measured  at  nearly  seven  times  the  initial  investment.    The  magnitude  of  the  dollar  profit  is  also  a  function  of  the  magnitude  of  the  investment;  large  e-­‐detailing  programs  generate  greater  profits  than  do  smaller  e-­‐detailing  programs.