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Case study: Migraine management

Improving pharmacy community knowledge and confidence

Published: 04 Dec 2014

Forest Labs logo

Client: Forest Laboratories

Agency: Pegasus

Campaign: A measured approach to migraine management

Timescale:

A quick look

When it comes to advising on migraine, changing ingrained behaviours/preferences of the pharmacy community was not an easy task, however using an insight-driven approach that combined creativity and strategic focus, Imigran Recovery’s education campaign made a big impact. Pharmacy community knowledge and confidence regarding the product and migraine, significantly increased (100 per cent felt more confident and 75 per cent said they were more likely to recommend the product), and combined with well-targeted quality media relations, a 31 per cent year-on-year product sales increase was achieved - while also ensuring migraine sufferers get the best possible advice to help them manage a debilitating condition.

Challenge

Eight years ago, Imigran Recovery (sumatriptan) made the switch from a ‘POM’ medication to a ‘P’ licence medicine in a bid to make it more accessible to people who experience migraines. Since then, data had shown a number of barriers to uptake in the pharmacy setting, affecting the support received by people with migraines, and ultimately sales.

After acquiring the brand in 2009, Forest Laboratories tasked Pegasus (integrated communications team) and Ceuta (marketing team) with the objective of driving product recommendations through pharmacy staff to migraine sufferers. The challenge was multi-faceted, including: low awareness of the prevalence and impact of migraine; low confidence amongst pharmacy teams to advise customers; and low awareness of the treatment options available. A number of different communications strategies would be required to inspire action.

Solution

The approach to the challenge was two-fold: firstly to educate, harness and empower pharmacists in migraine advice and specifically position Imigran Recovery as a first line treatment; and secondly, to educate patients, in particular non- or mis-treaters, about migraine, Imigran Recovery and support from pharmacists. Overall, it would be important to position Imigran Recovery as an authority on migraine, in order to build trust in the brand.

  • Create a series of engaging and educational tools to increase pharmacists’ confidence when advising migraine sufferers
  • Develop a pharmacy mailer which included a simplified sales protocol comprising a scenario wheel; a consumer guide; a training booklet; patient information cards; newspaper style mailer
  • Online training rolled out in national pharmacy outlets
  • Proactive press office that focused on prominent media medics, and targeted consumers through media outreach communicating key messages and product information.

Results

With an overall business goal to help create an environment that enabled increase in sales of Imigran Recovery the campaign results were clearly identifiable. Overall, the campaign delivered clear and measurable outcomes that resulted in an increase in website traffic from both patients and pharmacists, a tangible impact on pharmacy knowledge and confidence, and an impressive 31 per cent sales growth.

Pharmacy training results included:

  • A comprehensive pharmacy support pack containing 6 x educational training materials
  • 3,386 x support packs distributed and a direct mail-out to pharmacies 
  • 16 x items of coverage within pharmacy media to communicate updated protocol and launch of support pack
  • 100 per cent of pharmacists asked in a post-activity evaluation agreed the training tools made them feel more confident
  • 75 per cent said they would be more likely to recommend Imigran Recovery to a customer
  • 76 per cent said they felt more confident about treating and managing migraines after using the training
  • 58 per cent found the training the most useful aspect of the pack.

Media outreach results: 

  • 7 x media medic face-to-face briefings
  • 40 x key health journalists were briefed
  • 26 x items of positive media coverage generated in national and consumer titles
  • 10 x pieces of coverage included a packshot of Imigran Recovery
  • 80 per cent of coverage mentioned efficacy of sumatriptan as a migraine treatment 
  • More than 24,000 unique visitors to the website over the course of the campaign with an average visit time of 2 minutes 30 seconds.

Client verdict

Forest commented: “We know through direct feedback from pharmacists, that the training materials created enhanced both their knowledge and confidence about the migraine category, which in turn has helped drive an increase in sales of the product. Pegasus understood the brief exactly and delivered outstanding materials that clearly resonated with pharmacists and consumers.”

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