Strategic Development

3. Aligning Key Issues and Brand Opportunities to Strategic Imperatives

Experience has shown that “less is more”, as a brand team can only provide optimal focus on a few challenges and/or market opportunities at any one time. Generally, 3-5 Strategic Imperatives are ideal, but specifics depend on the complexity of the market or product life cycle. Beyond experience, this number makes sense from a psychological perspective as studies have shown 3-5 as ideal for optimal focus. Focusing on more than 5 limits attention and may dilute focus (i.e. development of a plan with a series of mediocre tactics, instead of a few differentiating and impactful ones)

Looking at a hypothetical situation, an example of developing SIs around a Key Brand Issue would be a situation where there are competitive products in the same therapeutic category as your brand, BriGenix. Consider a fictitious therapeutic category, gamma lactase class. These competitors are associated with strong efficacy but also have a negative side effect profile. Subsequently, physicians are reserving products in this class, including BriGenix to 2nd and 3rd line therapy. However, BriGenix has a different, targeted selective MOA, despite being in the same therapeutic class as similar agents that have an unfavorable side effect profile. The targeted and selective MOA of BriGenix results in a more favorable side effect profile with comparable efficacy. If the overall strategy of BriGenix is to become standard of care, and moving up to 1st line therapy among a segment of patients that would benefit most, the perception of a negative side effect profile and subsequent relegation to later lines of therapy must be overcome. Based on the profile of BriGenix, an example of a well thought out Strategic Imperative would place focus on differentiation among competitors within the same therapeutic class, to potentially expand product usage. The tactics aligned to this SI would be focused on driving clinical differentiation within the gamma lactase therapeutic class and reinforce gamma lactase class superiority vs. generic competitors.

Below is an example of how this could be captured in the context of a Brand Plan Presentation:

4. Assigning Critical Success Factors to Strategic Imperatives

Each CSF should be “anchored” to its respective SI and serve as the foundation for the tactics that deliver against each SI. They should be articulated in such a way that explicitly states, the desired “Future State” that will exist, if the Key Issue is addressed or the Market/Brand Opportunity is successfully leveraged for each SI.

Here you can see an example of how you might capture this in a brand plan presentation: