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When the smoke clears

How has NICE approval and extensive brand building affected Champix' market position?

Competitor brands
On the surface, the established brands' position looks fairly good. The proportions of GPs rating them for each of the five attributes measured have remained fairly stable over the year to date. They may well be seeing increased sales due to more people wanting to stop smoking, but could also be seeing lower market share with the entrance of Champix.

The one note of caution from the survey results comes in the lower proportion of GPs saying they have seen reps or attended seminars/meetings for the established brand - this has fallen by a third. It suggests that these brands may be having difficulties getting their message across in the face of tougher competition.

More GPs say they have seen a rep or attended a meeting hosted by Champix than all of the three established brands combined. In light of recent changes to the working practices of pharmaceutical reps, GPs have a clear reason to see a Champix rep while those from the established brands will face difficulty obtaining appointments without the promise of new information. In the face of such resistance, this suggests the established brands may need to increase their marketing communication activity in order to get their messages across.

BrandWatch is written by Nigel Jacklin, managing director of Objective Research. The data is sourced from Pharmaceutical Brand Monitor, a quarterly survey developed by GP newspaper and MIMS. For further information on the survey contact David Saunders, Haymarket Medical Media on 0208 267 4869 or email at david.saunders@haymarket.com

10th December 2007

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