Phil Deschamps, GSW Worldwide

June 2, 2008

The healthcare advertising industry has been slow to respond to the evolution in the needs of pharmaceutical companies. In many ways, we still have a one-size-fits-all approach to contracting with our clients. This has made it easy for the procurement departments to standardize scopes of service, compare one company to the next, and cut off the outliers, thus resulting in lower fees.

The healthcare advertising industry has been slow to respond to the evolution in the needs of pharmaceutical companies. In many ways, we still have a one-size-fits-all approach to contracting with our clients. This has made it easy for the procurement departments to standardize scopes of service, compare one company to the next, and cut off the outliers, thus resulting in lower fees.

My belief is that manufacturers are willing to pay prime dollar for services that genuinely add value. To create that value, we are partnering with several clients, helping staff some of their key functions with the variable cost resource of the agency rather than the fixed cost of in-house staff, thus helping them manage risk—particularly before the "go, no-go" decisions. We also identify services that should be commoditized, and are developing low-cost processes to execute those services at a much lower cost. Rather than paying for the senior strategist on an account 24/7/365, we are determining points in time where the strategic minds of the agency come together to help our clients. These are just a few of the strategies we have employed to help our clients manage the financial pressures they are under.

Manufacturers no longer have the headcount to manage four or five different agencies per brand and come out with an integrated, effective, and efficient campaign. Neither side can afford to have duplicative roles on the client and agency teams. We need to work together to decide what capabilities we need as a whole to market a brand, and build one team between the pharma company and the agency.

The Skinny

GSW Worldwide, an inVentiv Health company, is head-quartered in Columbus, OH, with offices in 13 major global markets.

Telephone: 614-848-4848

E-mail: pdeschamps@gsw-w.com

Web site: www.gsw-w.com