Big Pharma Spends Big Bucks on TV

The Trump Administration is pushing a new proposal to force Pharma companies to list prescription drug prices in TV ads. The jury is still out on whether this new requirement will stand and ultimately help drive drug prices down, while others are speculating how the move might impact the TV advertising industry with Pharma being a major spender.

“That could all add up to a pain in the pocketbook for TV; after all, pharma is one of the largest TV ad spending categories. Last year, drugmakers spent more than $3.45 billion on national TV ads, according to iSpot.tv, so any pullback would hit the TV industry’s bottom line.”

What’s next for pharma in the advancing battle over drug prices in TV ads?

FiercePharma, 10/22/18

In the midst of the all the buzz, iSpot data on the pharmaceutical vertical has been picked up by a number of other noteworthy media publications, including:

BioPharmaDive, 10/22/18

OPB News, 10/18/18

As noted in the reports, it’s too soon to tell what impact the new regulations will have on advertisers since the proposal is only in its early stages. For those staying on top of the news, however, here is a breakdown of spend for the Pharma vertical over the past few years for future reference:

 

Past year topline (1/1-10/13):

Seventy-six Rx brands have spent an estimated $2.96 Billion, running 200 ads 534,000 times on national TV. In total, these airings generated 148.9 Billion TV ad impressions.

 

Past 3 years topline (10/14/15-10/13/18):

Rx brands have spent an estimated $10.1 Billion on TV Advertising. This spend has generated an estimated 454.2 Billion TV ad impressions.

 

Yearly spending by category (Past 3 years total)

 

 

Yearly Spending By Category (Past 3 Years By Year)

 

Rx: Diabetes & Blood Disorders

2018 (1/1-10/13): $689.9 million

2017: $874 million

2016: $787.8 million

 

Rx: Osteoporosis & Arthritis

2018 (1/1-10/13): $422.1 million

2017: $440.9 million

2016: $398.9 million

 

Rx: Stroke, Cholesterol & Heart Disease

2018 (1/1-10/13): $392.5 million

2017: $413.6 million

2016: $382.3 million

 

Rx: Psoriasis, Skin & Nails

2018 (1/1-10/13): $434.6 million

2017: $418.6 million

2016: $295.4 million

 

Rx: Bladder & Gastrointestinal

2018 (1/1-10/13): $252.3 million

2017: $406.9 million

2016: $305 million

 

Rx: Cancer

2018 (1/1-10/13): $281.6 million

2017: $308.3 million

2016: $116.6 million

 

Rx: Asthma & COPD

2018 (1/1-10/13): $176.8 million

2017: $245.6 million

2016: $213.8 million

 

Rx: Depression, Bipolar & Insomnia

2018 (1/1-10/13): $230 million

2017: $175.5 million

2016: $219.2 million

 

Rx: Mens & Women’s Health

2018 (1/1-10/13): $72.2 million

2017: $120.9 million

2016: $243.5 million

 

Rx: Allergies, Cold & Flu

2018 (1/1-10/13): $3.6 million

2017: $7.9 million

2016: $81.3 million

 

*Rx: Alzheimers & Multiple Sclerosis

2018 (1/1-10/13): N/A

2017: $34.6 million

2016: $69.2 million

 

*Rx: Immune Disease

2018 (1/1-10/13): $2.6 million

2017: $2.1 million

2016: N/A

 

*Please note, these categories are excluded from the graphs above.