May 23, 2017/Marc Cohen/Big Data

The Pharmaceutical Management Science Association (PMSA) held its annual conference last month, and for the first time, we had the pleasure to attend. For those who haven’t been, the PMSA Annual Conference gathers pharmaceutical companies, consultants, and service providers like Aktana to share new, analytics-driven approaches for addressing the pharmaceutical industry’s ever-evolving needs. This year, the overarching conversation focused on obtaining insight into market opportunities for smarter resource planning. Here’s an overview of the predominant topics that were discussed:

Aligning resources and strategy with market potential

Many talks—including this year’s keynote from Dr. Joel Selanikio—introduced novel ways to use insights derived from patient-level (EHR/EMR), demographic, social network and claims data to improve segmentation and allocate marketing resources more effectively.

Leveraging machine learning for marketing insights

Given the level of advanced analytics sophistication at the PMSA conference, and the increased availability of patient- and physician-level data overall, it’s no surprise that machine learning was another key topic of discussion. Most presentations, however, focused on applying machine learning to extract data insights for the purposes of making adjustments to strategy. I expect that next year we’ll see more diverse machine learning applications, similar to our integration of machine learning into a decision support engine to drive marketing execution.

Using network analysis to deliver greater value to KOLs

Fostering productive relationships with KOLs has been a critical part of pharmaceutical marketing strategy for some time. However, recent changes in health-care reform and the growing influence of IDNs have redefined what those relationships look like. Several talks spoke to this challenge, exploring the use of network analysis to identify KOLs, understand their relationships with IDNs, and improve targeting and segmentation as a result.

While these presentations addressed attendees’ concerns related to segmentation, targeting, sales force alignment and planning for smarter resource usage, the conversation seemed to stall out between planning and execution—the very problem Aktana’s Suggestions and Insights were developed to solve.

Overall, the PMSA Annual Conference was a great opportunity to meet up with the advanced analytics community to discuss new approaches to data-driven sales and marketing strategies within the pharmaceutical industry. You can access a comprehensive list of highlights and presentation summaries from the 2017 PMSA Annual Conference here.