Cegedim Strategic Data (CSD) reports a decline of 3.4% in worldwide audited pharmaceutical marketing investments for 2011 (see “Pharma Marketing Global Spend Dipped 3.4% in 2011“). In China, however, pharma spending on sales rep detailing physicians increased by 23% in 2011 compared to 2010. That activity represents about 81% of the total pharma marketing spend in China compared to 60% globally.

“This is typical of emerging markets,” noted Christopher Wooden Vice President for CSD Global Promotion Audits.

Another type of marketing spend that is “typical” for emerging markets is meetings where physicians are invited to listen to key opinion leaders or specific promotions. In China, meeting spending was up 43% in 2011 vs. 2010. That represents 17% of the total marketing spend in China. Sampling, on the other hand, represents only 1% of the marketing spend, whereas in in the U.S. 21% of pharma’s marketing spend is on samples. Note that CSD costs samples according to Average Wholesaler Cost rather than retail value.

Japan, on the other hand, saw a “surge” in pharma marketing spend in 2010 over 2009, but there was a “pull back” in 2011 with a 12.5% drop overall. Detailing was down 12% and spending on meetings, which accounts for almost 30% of the marketing mix, was down 11% to $7.4 Bn.

Using my math, that means that total pharma marketing spend in Japan in 2011 was about $24.7 Bn (7.4/.3) compared to $29.2 Bn in the US.

In the U.S., pharma marketing spend was down by about 4% overall, with detailing dipping 6% in 2011 compared to 2010 (see “2011 U.S. Pharma Company Promotion Spending” and chart below).