Business Mint- INDIA’S LEADING & MOST CREDIBLE MARKET RESEARCH COMPANY annually conducts “Nationwide Pharma Marketing Excellence Awards”. The purpose of the award is to acknowledge the outstanding contribution of a marketeer towards the brand or a campaign aimed at improving patient outcomes.
On the awards day, we get an opportunity to interact with Mr. Gavin Dsouza, the winner of “Nationwide Pharma Marketing Excellence Awards” for “Excellence in Marketing-Gastroenterology”. Mr. Gavin is a distinguished marketeer, currently associated with the leading pharmaceutical organization, Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories as a Group Product Manager and brings in rich experience of 6 years in marketing. He has been rewarded with awards for his contribution to the gastroenterology specialty with great initiatives such as” The Great Gastro Debate”. After congratulating him, for winning the “Nationwide Pharma Marketing Excellence Awards” for “Excellence in Marketing-Gastroenterology”, we had an opportunity to converse with Mr. Gavin. I am sharing a glimpse from an insightful and inspiring conversation for the benefit of all readers.
Q.1: Today you have been awarded as the best marketeer in the gastroenterology specialty, tell us, what inspired you to pursue a career in the profession of pharma marketing at first?
This question is very close to my heart. I always had an aspiration to be in the space of healthcare. I wanted to be in the pharma field because I always had an inclination toward chemistry and biology. Moreover, I would like to give this credit to my mother who worked in the pharma industry. I was born and brought up with lots of stories about her office in terms of the launch of molecules and how medicines actually cater to the lives of people. All this altogether motivated me to pursue B. Pharm and MBA. This is when I developed my interest in marketing. Brand building interested me the most in pharma marketing. Before gastroenterology, I was working in diabetes therapy where I was able to launch novel molecules. Now in the space of gastroenterology, we are moving towards more innovative medicines where the affordability and acceptability of the medicines are higher. This has shaped my career dramatically.
Q.2: Can you tell us about your journey as a marketeer, your learning curve & what was that inflection point in the journey that transformed you into a successful marketeer?
I am an extremely motivated individual. During my marketing career, my turning point came when I realized that everything that shines is not gold. Due to this, I contemplated on my certain decisions, such as moving from management to marketing. If I really wanted to impact lives, I had to move to the forefront of what I was selling. Every product comes to life because marketing has a crucial role in bringing the product to a position in the market. My journey has always been full of peaks and troughs with consistent learning. I have been part of the launch of novel molecules for diabetes. I have also participated in patient education initiatives. The intention to learn new things and the intention to spread the knowledge that I have has kept me going.
I owe this achievement to my mentors from Dr. Reddy’s team especially, Mr. Sandeep Khandelwal, Mr. Manish Bajaj, Mr. Ranjith Reddy, Mr. Parth Parikh, and Mr. Sangram Shirke. Mr. Saroj Mishra & Mr. Azeem Mistry have been helping me build excellence in all marketing initiatives and the entire RecuraAlfa field team at DRL for their flawless & rigour in execution. I would like to thank my agency Partners, i.e. Ms. Laxmi Patkar and Ms. Surbhi Handa & Ms. Neha Bhale from Insignia Learning for building new innovative avenues.
Q.3: Being a successful brand manager, according to you, what are the traits of trade that a brand manager should inculcate to excel?
I have a model called ‘learn, unlearn, and relearn.’ As a brand manager, one should be open to learning new things. Marketing is not only about creativity. I believe that marketing is in its purest form when it is based on its principles. Therefore, one should be open to learning and ensure that the marketing principles are correctly followed. Marketeers should keep themselves updated with the current knowledge. One should be clear that the same effort and tactics may not work in every case since pharma marketing is a dynamic field. Therefore, one should unlearn and relearn a few strategies to be effective in marketing. Focusing on one’s concepts and creativity is essential.
Q.4: For the year 2022, you have been awarded as the best marketeer in the gastroenterology specialty, tell us something about your last year’s marketing initiatives that make you stand tall in this highly competitive industry.
In the space of gastroenterology, from the perspective of medical knowledge, we reach out to healthcare providers in terms of getting more knowledge and helping them upgrade their overall clinical practice for the betterment of the patients. One initiative that we made was the great gastro debate. It talked about certain topics that were always concerning but never had any conclusion. We collaborated with international experts and subject matter experts to talk about the most controversial topics. The debate was concluded by how each case can be approached when it comes to actual patient profiles. This initiative brought a lot of innovation and at the same time, it provided a clear perspective in terms of initiating the right treatment at the right time. Along with it, there were a lot of patient education initiatives to spread awareness. This helped the patients to identify certain disease identifiers that can be observed at an early stage to avoid any kind of future complications. In gastroenterology, there are various acute and chronic therapies. Educating patients about various concepts is very important.
Q.5: How have your marketing initiatives improved the quality of life of the patients?
Using the various patient education materials and based on scientific evidence, the doctors were able to approach the cases in a better way. With patient education, we were able to make the patients aware of the condition, bring clarity to their concepts, and make them understand the treatment. In many cases, the conditions that were chronic required the support of the caregivers as well. Reaching out to the patients and the caregivers led to improvement in patient outcomes.
Q.6: Every specialty has a typical success lever, according to you what are those levers of success in the gastroenterology specialty?
In this specialty, identification of the need is very crucial. After identifying the needs, you get various ideas and it is essential to see which idea satisfies the healthcare needs of the patients. Thereafter, putting the lens on the past, present, and future, one must evaluate situations and develop a suitable solution. Learning and upgrading the solutions can help to meet the needs of the customers.
Q.7: At last, what would you like to tell, the budding marketers, hoping to carve out their career in pharma brand building?
I believe that everyone is unique and not everyone follows the same path. If you have a goal in mind, aspirations, and the willingness to win, you can achieve the desired goals in your career of pharma brand building. The solutions may be different, but the way you approach them on the given platform makes you successful.