Case Studies: Prescription Brands With Multiple Indications
The pharmaceutical prescription brands Humira and Cymbalta have one positioning for multiple indications while Sildenafil Citrate has different positioning for each indication. The strategies have been effective, and Humira is the most successful medicine with annual sales of over $12 billion. Cymbalta also used to generate $3.5 billion in sales annually before its exclusive patent expired in 2016, and was the most prescribed antidepressant from the year 2013 to 2014.
Humira uses the strategy of one positioning for multiple indications. It presented itself as a whole disease platform and developed a campaign that showed how it enables people to be active in their world. It positioned itself as the best anti-TNF prescription that treats the whole disease, and this enabled it to take a dynamic and positive stance and lay claim to leadership in the category. The diseases treated by Humira include rheumatoid arthritis, chronic plaque psoriasis, Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis, ankylosing spondylitis, and hidradenitis suppurativa.
Humira used the strategy of single positioning for multiple indications to beat the competition in the anti-TNF market. In 2010, it required to distance itself from the other drugs in the market, and competitors aligned themselves to safety and convenience messages. It had a business goal of capturing 60% of first-line biologic patients and decided to own "efficacy" as its compelling platform. People always seek prescriptions that will have a positive effect on their health, and the campaign by Humira was successful. It captured 70% of first-line biologic patients, became the first-line prescribing choice in psoriatic arthritis (PsA) and ankylosing spondylitis (AS), and the first-line prescribing choice for three-quarters of rheumatologists. The success placed it ahead of the competition. Today, Humira is the most successful medicine in the world. It has transformed the lives of patients with immune-mediated diseases and has annual sales of over $12 billion.
Cymbalta initially used the strategy of one positioning for a single indication before shifting to one positioning for multiple indications. The reason for its initial strategy was because the company wanted to replace Prozac, which was coming closer to the end of its patent and was successful in the treatment of depression. To avoid losing its market share and uphold its reputation in the treatment of depression, Eli Lilly and Company wanted to manufacture a suitable drug as a replacement for Prozac. Lilly formed the New Antidepressant Team to find a replacement for Prozac whose patent was to expire in 2003. The team realized that Cymbalta could treat both depression and pain, which was a common symptom among depressed patients. Prozac made an annual revenue of $2 billion, and Cymbalta would enable the company to enter the field of pain management and earn more revenue. The aim of the new strategy was to differentiate Cymbalta from other depression drugs in the market by giving it the additional edge of pain treatment and also uphold the success the company previously enjoyed with Prozac. Cymbalta is used in treating major depressive disorders, generalized anxiety disorder, fibromyalgia, chronic musculoskeletal pain, and diabetic peripheral neuropathic pain.
The strategy employed by Cymbalta was successful after its approval by the FDA in 2004. After extensive marketing of Cymbalta by Eli Lilly and Company, the drug experienced a 70% growth in sales and earned $1.3 billion in sales in 2006. From 2013 to 2014, it became the most prescribed antidepressant with about 10.07 million prescriptions every month. In 2016, Eli Lilly and Company lost the patent exclusivity for Cymbalta, and other competitors started flooding the market leading to a decrease in sales. The revenue from Cymbalta decreased by 9% from $1.027 billion in 2015 to $930 million as a result of losing its patent exclusivity. Before going generic in the U.S. in 2016, Cymbalta generated $3.5 billion annually.
The drug is manufactured by Pfizer, and the brand uses different positioning for each indication. Erectile dysfunction and pulmonary arterial hypertension are the indications for Sildenafil Citrate. The positioning are Revatio for pulmonary arterial hypertension and Viagra for erectile dysfunction. Revatio is used in treating pulmonary arterial hypertension in adults and improve their ability to exercise. It is administered as tablets, oral suspension, and injection.
The reason for using the different positioning for each indication was to ensure effective marketing of the independent brands for the different indications to promote growth. It was also done to maximize revenue potential and value creation. The strategy has been effective and ensured the success of the brands. Pfizer makes up to $1.14 billion annually from the sale of Viagra in the United States, and its patent protection will expire in April 2020. Revatio has also become the preferred drug in the treatment of pulmonary arterial hypertension. It is more popular compared to other drugs used in the treatment of pulmonary arterial hypertension. People also prefer it because it is cheaper and only costs $18.17 per unit compared to others such as Adcirca that costs $69.88 per unit.
In conclusion, the pharmaceutical prescription brands Cymbalta and Humira have one positioning for multiple indications while Sildenafil Citrate has different positioning for each indication. The strategies have been effective, and Humira is the most successful medicine with over $12 billion in sales annually. Cymbalta also used to generate $3.5 billion in sales annually before its exclusive patent expired in 2016, and was the most prescribed antidepressant from the year 2013 to 2014.