This is when you should not use TV for DTC

The use of TV for new pharma drugs is a great way to build awareness but when the incidence of your patient population is 20 per 10000 it’s a waste of money. This is especially true when your product has a black box warning.

Myasthenia gravis is a chronic autoimmune, neuromuscular disease that causes weakness in the skeletal muscles (the muscles that connect to your bones and contract to allow body movement in the arms and legs and allow for breathing).

Myasthenia gravis affects males and females across all racial and ethnic groups. It most commonly impacts young adult females (under 40) and older males (over 60), but it can occur at any age, including childhood. Myasthenia gravis is not inherited, nor is it contagious. Occasionally, the disease may occur in more than one member of the same family.

The prevalence of myasthenia gravis in the United States is estimated at 14 to 20 per 100,000 population, with approximately 36,000 to 60,000 cases in the United States. So why, then Alexion use TV to reach a small patient population?

Then there is this:

ULTOMIRIS is only available through a program called the ULTOMIRIS REMS. Before you can receive ULTOMIRIS, your healthcare provider must: enroll in the ULTOMIRIS REMS program; counsel you about the risk of meningococcal infection; give you information and a Patient Safety Card about the symptoms and your risk of meningococcal infection (as discussed above); and make sure that you are vaccinated with a meningococcal vaccine, and if needed, get revaccinated with the meningococcal vaccine. Ask your healthcare provider if you are not sure if you need to be revaccinated.

Like a patient knows what a REMS program is?

Here are some reasons why any DTC marketer shouldn’t use TV if their target audience is small:

  • TV advertising is expensive. The cost of a TV ad can vary depending on the time of day, the channel, and the length of the ad, but it can easily cost thousands of dollars. If you have a small target audience, you may not be able to reach enough people with your ad to make it worth the investment.
  • TV advertising is not very targeted. When you advertise on TV, your ad is seen by a wide range of people, not just your target audience. This means that a lot of your ad budget will be wasted on people not interested in your product or service.
  • TV advertising is not very measurable. It can be challenging to track the effectiveness of TV advertising. You can’t be sure how many people actually saw your ad, or how many of those people were influenced to buy your product or service.

If you have a small target audience, there are other marketing channels that are more effective and more affordable. For example, you could try online advertising, social media marketing, or email marketing. These channels allow you to target your ads more precisely, and you can track the effectiveness of your campaigns more easily.

Here are some other marketing channels that you may want to consider if your target audience is small:

  • Direct mail
  • Events
  • Disease State Group(s)
  • Targeted online advertising

These channels can be more effective and more affordable than TV advertising for businesses with small target audiences.

This ad campaign is just a waste of money and I can’t explain why they would use TV for such a small audience.