Medical marketing research helps to understand the needs of clinical practice and provides appropriate feedback to manufacturers

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Missions of the Japan Medical Marketing Research Group (JMMRG)

JMMRG was established by a group of medical market research agencies to solve common issues and challenges that occur within healthcare related market researches in Japan and to further support the development of medical marketing research industry. And our missions include,

  1. Raising awareness of market research among potential respondents
  2. Raising awareness and understanding of market research among manufacturers
  3. Improving our overall levels as medical market research agencies

Background to establishment

Pharmaceutical and medical device companies have utilized marketing research agencies for collecting information to help them evaluate new product marketing approaches and to obtain guidance for making business decisions.

With a limited number of physicians standing at 290,000 in Japan, it is crucial for the healthcare industry to maintain the current state in which conducting marketing research on a permanent basis is possible. As such, it is important to develop and maintain an environment that ensures physicians' confidentiality and their protection of personal information in order to facilitate their research cooperation.

JMMRG was established ahead of the enforcement of Personal Information Protection Law in April 2005, by coming together of market research agencies specializing in physician research to address the issues relating to this new law.

The first JMMRG meeting was held on November 2004 with head representatives of medical market research business from Intage Inc., ACNielsen (now Nielsen), and Social Survey Research Information Co., Ltd., with later additions of Marketing Center Co., Ltd., TM Marketing Inc. (now Anterio), and Taylor Nelson Sofres Infoplan (now Kantar). These six agencies, which all are members of the JMRA (Japan Marketing Research Association) and all with medical research divisions, reached a consensus to first address the issue of Personal Information Protection Law and its potential impact on the healthcare market research environment.

In addition to consulting a JMRA board member who is also a university associate professor specialized in the Personal Information Protection Law, the JMMRG, in collaboration with an organization of market researchers from pharmaceutical companies, invited physician database companies and non-JMRA medical marketing data companies and held a study meeting with approximately 100 participants to discuss measures on the usage of physician data under the privacy law.

As a result, JMMRG was able to hold discussions with client companies and Nihon Ultmarc Inc.*, and the issue was solved after Nihon Ultmarc Inc. agreed to accommodate opt-out system (cleansing data system) exclusively for medical researches. (*Nihon Ultmarc Inc. is a physician database company that provides a unique ID to each physician/ hospital /clinic, and this ID is used by pharmaceutical companies and other healthcare related companies for their customer CRM systems – e.g. target list)

Furthermore, as the JMMRG consists of full members of the JMRA, it submitted a prospectus of our activities to the Association, which was approved by the executive committee on February 25, 2005.

This is how the JMMRG started, and we continue to work towards improving the medical marketing research environment in Japan.

Contents List

Executive Committee of JMMRG

Head of Committee
Anterio Inc.
Deputy Head of Committee
Social Survey Research Information Co., Ltd.
Committee Member (Accounting)
Macromill Inc
Committee Member (Public and external relations)
The Nielsen Company Japan
Committee Member
Ipsos K.K.

Japan Marketing Research Association (JMRA)

Japan Marketing Research Association (JMRA)