Introducing new or revised pharmaceutical drugs to the market requires a team effort to understand the competitive landscape and the best positioning for the new product. Pharmaceutical competitor analysis is essential, to establish key contenders, pricing and forecasted success in delivery. Assessing patients’ needs and demands gives the ability to predict sales and return on clinical trials and licences, but success is only apparent if you can be a competitive market player.

The pharmaceutical industry is one of the biggest trades in the world and therefore strategic decision making is paramount. Pharmaceutical market research, drug development, regulatory compliance and clinical trials in pharmaceutical medicines cost billions every year, so companies need to be distinct about how successful a new product can be. Pharmaceutical competitor analysis is a vital component to facilitating the longevity of an accomplished product but drug companies may not have the time, skills or expertise to be able to deliver the in-depth knowledge that is needed.

During the process of drug development, it is imperative to understand competition and to identify the strengths, weaknesses and threats in the pharmaceutical industry. Drug development is not only establishing the best and most successful treatment or formulation for a condition or disease, it is just as important to research the market to determine your competitors in the market, if you want to successful. Key elements of the transition from development to market, are the following:

  • Best product profile
  • Optimum formulation for drug
  • Most competitive price for drug
  • Drug branding
  • Positioning in the marketplace
  • Communications and channels to be used
  • Forecasted patient demands
  • Direct and potential competitors


Pharmaceutical competitor analysis

There are several important areas of competitor pharmaceutical research and analysis that needs to be ascertained to authenticate new product development.  Key elements such as pricing research, patient research, physician and patient segmentation, clinical trials, testing demands and assessments are all critical pieces of information that you need to develop a new product to market. Cost is highly important as there’s no point injecting funds in to a product which is already saturating the market. Suppliers to pharmaceutical companies do not seem to prove much competition and rivalry is limited because many drug companies tend to have their own manufacturing plants. The pharmaceutical industry is quite fragmented so we do not often see new players entering the market because it’s so competitive and development and marketing costs are so high.

Identify competitor strengths and weaknesses

Using the SWOT analysis will help any pharmaceutical business to establish its position in the marketplace. SWOT is strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats, and can be used in own company analysis and for competitors. Industry experts will have more expertise in pharmaceutical competitor analysis and are knowledgeable about establishing competitor’s weaknesses by having more commerce knowledge, being able to spot underlying business concerns, failed practices or insubstantial strategies for long-term success. Weaknesses in drug companies may be the lack of marketing, damaged reputation, market saturation, staff issues, lack of funding and licensing problems. Strengths would isolate market leaders, investment, carefully placed marketing strategies and a greater loyal customer base that is forever increasing.