Revealing doctors' prescribing choice dimensions with multivariate tools: A perceptual mapping approach

Carlos M F Monteiro, Sally Dibb, Luis Tadeu Almeida

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


This article explores the use of multivariate techniques to build perceptual maps that show the perceived competitive positions of a set of ethical drugs. The data were drawn from a commercial panel of 283 family doctors working for the UK National Health Service. Factor analysis was applied to identify the main dimensions used by doctors to perceive and evaluate antihypertensive brands. Perceptual maps showing the competitive positions of 14 antihypertensives were produced using the factor scores of the medicines. Multiple regression analysis enabled the relative importance of each perceptual dimension to be determined. The results reveal that doctors use a small number of perceptual dimensions to evaluate competitive antihypertensive drugs, namely: "medical support", "long term efficacy", and the "additional beneficial effects" provided by the brand. The implications for marketing managers in the ethical pharmaceutical industry are explained and ways in which the perceptual analysis can be used to guide strategic marketing decisions considered.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)909-920
Number of pages12
JournalEuropean Journal of Operational Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 16 Mar 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Ethical pharmaceutical products
  • Marketing
  • Multivariate statistical analysis
  • Perceptual mapping
  • Prescribing behaviour

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Management Science and Operations Research
  • Modelling and Simulation
  • Information Systems and Management


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