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Branding Goes Global

Executive Summary

Until recently, most pharma firms handed drugs to a network of partners for marketing, or let their local divisions figure out sales strategies. These days, companies are increasingly working from headquarters to devise a single strategy they can apply across world markets. The point of global branding is leverage. Companies hope to increase sales while decreasing costs associated with marketing, and so get maximum value from drugs, throughout carefully planned life cycles. Medical marketers are studying how consumer-goods marketers craft consistent images and messages that help products become internationally desirable brands. Firms are thinking and acting earlier, with more coordination, than ever before. Some major companies have undergone fundamental restructuring to become more effective at global branding. They're meeting frequently, defining best practices, paying more attention to pre-launch efforts and to Phase IV studies that may support claims. No one knows which practices work best. Some experts say the industry should behave more like consumer marketers, others say less. It's possible that global branding can widen corporate development choices.

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