Pharmaceutical Trends — What’s Now, What’s Next

Dear House Rules,

I like to stay one step ahead of my competitors. What are the trends I should be watching for in the pharma market, and how can my company benefit from them?



Dear Trendwatcher: Great question. Following are just a few of pharmaceutical trends for the coming months that are sure to impact everyone in our industry – and give savvy marketers plenty of chances to shine.

Trend #1: Trump & Brexit Cause Pharma Market Jitters

Sick of politics? We are too. However, it can’t be ignored, this year especially. The election of Donald Trump and the passage of the Brexit vote have caused ripples of doubt in the stock market that could have a significant effect on the pharmaceutical industry and its bottom-line profits.1 Due to this uncertainty, many industry professionals are finding it difficult to strategize accurately for the future. Position your company’s service as one thing your client can be sure of in the current roller-coaster climate.

Trend #2: Unlikely Partnerships

One of the key pharma trends for 2017 is that of life sciences companies partnering with companies they wouldn’t have in the past. “Beyond the drug” is considered a buzzword for a reason – it’s no longer enough to launch a brand-name drug and expect it to be a blockbuster. The key is to provide something extra – something like pills that track patient compliance or inhalers that monitor when each dose is taken. Many of these extras have one common factor: technology, which is why marketing professionals might see some unlikely partnerships in the years ahead. Google, telecoms, mobile device manufacturers… even Facebook.2 Your clients will need to introduce these innovations to their patients, and that’s where you come in.

Trend #3: The Future is Now (Artificial Intelligence, Augmented Reality, and More)

It wouldn’t be a post about trends without reference to the more futuristic tools being developed, and indeed, 2017 is poised to see major growth in using such tools as artificial intelligence, augmented reality, virtual reality, and devices like the Oculus Rift. Patients will be able to see how a drug works in 3D before their eyes instead of just reading long descriptions on the bottle. Lab workers could monitor their experiments with augmented reality equipment. In factories, workers could start working without hands-on trainings as the device would tell them how to proceed using its artificial intelligence. As for the medications themselves, some may be manufactured using 3D-printing technology in order to facilitate faster dissolving and therefore quicker metabolism.3 Sound like science fiction? The first 3D-printed drug, Spritam for epilepsy, was already approved by the FDA in 2015. The more you know about these cutting-edge technologies, the more value you provide to your clients.

The one thing that does remain constant, of course, is change.

About Xavier Creative House

Founded in 2013, Xavier Creative House (XCH) is an award-winning healthcare creative agency specializing in pharmaceutical, biotech, and medical device. XCH’s global team of brand builders and healthcare marketers, tech-savvy go-getters, and innovative dream-vetters are passionate about the big idea that changes behavior in the healthcare marketplace. They believe life is about connections and that healthcare is about life. That is why XCH delivers bold and evocative creative solutions, amplified by meaningful technology, to energize brands and authentically connect with patients and HCPs.

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Sunny White
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