How a biotech accelerated trial recruitment efforts

Clinical trials


  • A biotech was looking for partnership opportunities to accelerate trial recruitment, build disease state awareness, and cultivate relationships in the community
  • Leveraging SponsorMotion's database, they identified more than 60 organizations that met their criteria and were open to partnership

You can download the full case study here

The context

Key Figures. 86% of clinical trials do not reach recruitment targets within their specified time periods. $8,000,000 of revenues can be lost per day of clinical trial extension.Accelerating awareness of clinical trials can be a challenging task for clinical-stage biotechs, especially when it comes to finding the right partners to connect with.

The impact of clinical trial delays is immense, both in terms of patient suffering and financially, with up to $8,000,0000 of lost revenues per day that the clinical trial has to be extended.

This is also a pervasive issue. As many as 86% of clinical trials fail to meet recruitment targets on time. These numbers are not sustainable.

New techniques to accelerate recruitment and "find patients" are largely based on AI, EMR analyses, and social media.  While these can be highly effective on paper, in the real world, overcoming barriers often requires a trusted influencer.   These can take many forms - doctors, friends, family, patient advocates - but are generally community-based and hinge on a trusted, personal relationship

The problem

In one recent case, a biotech company needed to quickly connect with nephrologists to ensure a clinical trial was recruited efficiently. They were set to be first-to-market, but it was close, and they feared that they would lose the competitive advantage with any delay.  While connecting with national organizations was already in their strategic plans, the medical team wasn't sure of how to best identify local partners. 

How could they efficiently find the right organizations with whom to partner,  and how would they select the right opportunities?

The team was very experienced in nephrology, so they knew the national landscape, advocacy groups, and hot topics.  They also knew that their rare indication was not well understood and that physicians were focused on larger indications and, frankly, managing ESRD / CKD patients. They had started researching what some more local, community-based groups were doing. However, they quickly realized that was not a sustainable effort - especially if they wanted to build a comprehensive list. 

So where do they go from here?

Our solution

We met with the client's medical affairs team and helped them define clear selection criteria:

  • Range of partner organizations:  Large hospitals, IDNs, consortiums, local physicians' associations, nurses, geneticists, pathologists? 
  • Opportunity profile: Personal vs. non-personal? Events? Advertisements?  Newsletters?  Roundtables? Sponsored dinners? 
  • Geography: Which states to focus on? How could we align activation with site selection?

Based on these criteria, our proprietary technology identified more than 250 organizations.  This included medical societies, sponsorable CME courses, and IDNs.

A prioritization exercise narrowed the number to 62 high-priority partners that were then profiled through an add-on analysis. 

We ultimately handed our client an organized, filterable list of all strategically sound options to accelerate engagement with the community. A layered, color-coded map also digested the opportunities to allow for unbiased decision-making, facilitate discussion around trade-offs, and provide a paradigm to guide investment. 

As a result, partner engagement plans became more robust, backed by data, ultimately fueling launch planning efforts. This engagement not only helped the team accelerate recruitment efforts but also paved the way for robust partnerships in key communities ahead of the competition. 

Client quote: I've been looking for conferences, but not everything was visible - I hadn't found any of this! - Director of Medical Affairs

Sources:, SponsorMotion analysis.


Leave a Comment