Personalized and data-driven: the changing nature of pharmaceutical sales

Posted by Tom Hemy on

Customer engagement in the life sciences industry has changed. Not only do key account managers find themselves collaborating with a range of different personnel, but engagements have shifted from traditional ‘one-size-fits-all’ presentations to highly tailored, data-driven, individualized discussions.

Pharmaceutical sales has evolved radically over the last decade. While the key account manager still has an active role to play, the salesforce of today comprises various new roles. A range of sales representatives, medical science liaisons and health outcomes professionals all now play a crucial part in pharmaceutical sales.

The changing pharmaceutical salesforce has led to altering practices in customer engagement, which has been further enhanced by the introduction of digital engagement software. However, not every aspect of life science sales has changed.

Payers and healthcare providers still need to be presented with comprehensive evidence, and to have an engaging conversation with a professional who knows the industry, the competition and understands the local issues.

Pharmaceutical Sales Blog

While the requirements of payers and healthcare providers have remained relatively constant, best practices when it comes to engaging customers have changed dramatically. When designing customer engagement tools, two prerequisites must be accounted for:

  1. Increasing importance of data to present value. Data has always been important, but now companies are collecting data on a scale like never before. It is therefore now common practice for companies to use this data to not only present a clear value strategy but also engage in a fully customized value-based discussion with payers and providers.
  2. Personalized content and patient-centricity. Rapid drug development and the advancement of personalized medicine demand that digital engagement tools should be tailored to individual customers. They should also be able to communicate the benefits for a specific patient population using the most up-to-date data.

Due to the increased technical requirements of developing mobile sales tools, pharmaceutical companies often outsource this job to a communications agency. Delays on such projects are common and the hidden costs can run very high. Why is this happening? We’ve identified the top 5 hidden cost drivers.

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