Merck KGaA’s US unit launches first TV ad with MS drug Mavenclad in the spotlight

After two years working to educate doctors about Mavenclad, EMD Serono is ready for its television premiere.

The first television campaign for the multiple sclerosis drug is also a first television commercial for EMD Serono, the American and Canadian pharmaceutical arm of Merck KGaA. The newly launched DTC campaign, “I’m Ready,” highlights Mavenclad’s unique oral dosing program.

Rather than the infusions and daily pills already on the MS market, Mavenclad is a short-acting oral therapy that splits treatment into 4-5 day cycles over two consecutive months over two years. That extends to 16-20 days of treatment over the course of two years. It is approved to treat secondary and recurrent progressive forms of the disease.

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The 90-second ad explains dosage details while showing active patients traveling through an airport, teaching at school, or working at their jobs. The people in the ads are actors, not patients, because the pandemic ruined EMD Serono’s plan to use patient ambassadors.

The TV ad will run on connected platforms (Hulu, Roku, Amazon, and others) to reach specific EM audiences. Digital marketing, which includes search and display ads and social media posts, links to resources, and more information.

“It is not something you would find in the Super Bowl or Sunday Night Football. It’s much more about targeting the channels and content that people with MS and their loved ones consume, ”said Venkat Thiruvallur, senior vice president at EMD Serono and chief of neurology and immunology in the US.

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Hyperterialization not only allocates media dollars more intelligently, but also aims to find the right patients in a competitive space for MS, where older therapies coexist with newer treatments in a wide variety of indications. and approved dosage regimens.

As Thiruvallur said, “There is no one-size-fits-all therapy in MS.”

To that end, many MS drug manufacturers are running DTC campaigns to show patients where they fit in. From Roche’s Ocrevus and Novartis’s Kesimpta with TV spots on national networks to targeted TV campaigns like Mavenclad, marketers seek to stand out from the crowd.

For now, that crowd is led by Ocrevus, which raised $ 4.6 billion in 2020. Mavenclad sales totaled € 530 million last year and € 147 million in the first quarter of 2021, an increase of 26% year-over-year, reported Merck KGaA.

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