News | January 10, 2018

Syneos Health Releases 2018 Commercial Trends Forecast

The Commercial Forecast Joins a Series of Consumer, Digital, Communications and Healthcare Trends Reports that Reveals Shifts in Media and Medicine Impacting Stakeholder Engagement

Syneos Health, the only fully integrated biopharmaceutical solutions organization combining a CRO and a CCO (Contract Commercial Organization), recently released its inaugural Commercial Trends Forecast. The report identifies important trends in biopharmaceutical commercialization – from the frontlines of drug development to patient engagement and next-generation care – expressing the biggest drivers of change.

“2018 will be a year of Commercial transformation,” said Michelle Keefe, President, Commercial Solutions, Syneos Health. “With the intensification of disruptions to the commercial model, it’s important to have a clear view on how changes impact key health stakeholders. Understanding the most significant emerging trends will allow biopharma strategists to reallocate budgets and recalibrate actions to demonstrate more relevant value.”

Commercial leaders from across Syneos Health identified 15 important trends that shape stakeholder perspectives, challenge conventional launch wisdom and drive innovation affecting every aspect of the customer experience, starting with early clinical development and beyond.

Syneos Health professionals are uniquely qualified to predict the 2018 landscape as they are engaged across the clinical and commercial continuum and at every influential touch point. The Syneos Health team includes clinical experts who have helped customers recruit more than 500,000 clinical trial participants annually; 12,000 nurses and sales experts who’ve educate healthcare professionals, patients and caregivers; and behavioral scientists immersed in ethnographic research. Experts also have access to the company’s unmatched data and insights including prescription data for nearly 200 million people that creates smarter approaches for customer engagement.

Trends identified by Syneos Health leaders align with four overarching themes that will drive 2018 commercial strategies:

  • The Influencers are Changing - Today, integrated delivery networks (IDNs) own more than 60 percent of physician group practices. Those delivery networks as well as advocacy groups, third-party value frameworks, and an ever-smaller circle of payers all play a part in a greater shift centered on how value is defined, delivered and measured in the current healthcare environment.
  • New Voices are Being Heard - A whole range of new voices are being elevated as influencers seeking partners who can tell a unique value story. Pharmaceutical medical teams, sales teams, key opinion leaders, advocacy partners and other critical affiliates pool capabilities in finding new ways to engage and co-create nearly every aspect of the health experience.
  • Points of Influence are Rapidly Evolving - The average patient journey diagram once outlined four or five predictable steps representing a real-life journey – which is no longer the case. In 2018, the patient experience map is being radically updated to reflect new points of interaction.
  • The Commercial Outlook is Shifting - In 2018, commercial teams are involved far earlier in the drug development cycle, hyper focused and crisis ready. Pharmaceutical innovators are increasingly breaking down the silos that have long divided the clinical and commercial disciplines.

The Commercial Trends Forecast is the latest addition to the annual trends series from Syneos Health Communications, including Consumer, Digital, Communications and Healthcare Trends. The report series identifies shifts in media and medicine that disrupt how we think about customers, where we engage them and what kinds of experiences we create.

This is the seventh year that Syneos Health Communications, formerly inVentiv Health Communications, is issuing its annual trends series which is read by thousands of healthcare and marketing executives. The reports assemble and analyze clues, examples, stories and big ideas collected by 250 trend watchers from around the world.

“The health experience is not just about interactions with one brand or disease state – it’s about far deeper interactions with peers, families, technology and media,” said Leigh Householder, Managing Director of Innovation at Syneos Health Communications and lead author of the trends series. “These trends help us understand how to really make connections to better meet consumer expectations based on today’s market dynamics and contemporary behaviors.”

Download all five of the 2018 trends reports at (

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SOURCE: Syneos Health