The reality is that, today, Pharma companies need to compete with 1 000’s of new digital health initiatives now entering the market. We understand that those could be partners as much as competitors. Either way, positioning, marketing and selling of drugs has drastically changed in the new digital economy.
Fast adaptation needs to take place, particularly for big Pharma. Many Pharma have a good base – platforms and technologies which are the same across all their markets. However, now Pharma need to leverage these technologies and bring their digital plans up to date.
Because of the increased sophistication of customers, 70% of the buying decision journey is completed without any sales involvement. Recent research from CEB also shows that on average, 5.4 people are now involved in an average B2B buying process. This is also true for drugs.
This, and the need to find consensus among such a disparate group, means that sales cycles have extended as sellers need to interact with a complex set of stakeholders. The experience, trust and comfort of a brand must be conveyed to a multitude of buyers; they all seek different information in different ways and Pharma often do not take this into account, leading to many failed engagements for new drugs.
The impact of user‐centered innovation and the delivery of unique digital buyer engagement journeys are two key criteria often missed across sales management processes in Pharma, with disparate digital efforts all being conducted in a piecemeal way. This needs to change.
The Impact of User‐centered Innovation:
Because of brands such as Apple, Google or Amazon, buyers expect to interact with more user‐centered offerings that meet their everyday needs and require limited technical involvement, even though the core users of that offering will often not be those making the purchasing decision around that offering.
This is also true in Pharma. Patients, physicians and other stakeholders are interacting with brands before they ever use them. Pharma are not utilizing this enough in their digital planning process, and if they are, it is not done in an engagement-led way.
Designing unique digital engagement journeys:
53% of customer loyalty is driven by the sales experience. So, customers value how sales reps spend their time. What this means is that architecting a unique engagement journey supported by the right content ecosystem and commercial insights are mandatory to achieve sales success. The way we do this is by utilizing Artificial Intelligence driven insights to understand:
- the different stakeholders
- stakeholders’ unique customer journeys
- what content and channels will influence the different stakeholders at different points in their buying cycle
We then deliver tools for sales reps to deliver the right message to the right customer at the right time, as well as plan digital channels to do the same. This means that one must align internal enablement capabilities to how customers buy your product(s) or beyond the pill solution(s).
Surprisingly, many organizations don’t consider the impact that internal sales enablement has on commercial transformation, and do not spend enough time or focus on designing unique demand generation, challenging content and marketing communications strategies as well as sales readiness support tools for their organization and their customers.
So, both sides of the coin must be taken into account. Firstly, understanding the buyers and the new digital buyer engagement journey, and delivering the right content in the right digital channel at the right time to the right customer is crucial. Secondly, ensuring that the sales reps make influencing sales messages a reality, helping them understand what to say when, the manner in which they should say it, and how to keep the approach alive in their day‐to‐day activities is critical.
The optimal way to do this for both of these aspects is not to do piecemeal digital activities but to analyze the customers and their journey, and influence content and channels utilizing Artificial Intelligence. Design the journey to sway them maximally.
Also, for the sales reps, one should optimally use Artificial Intelligence that analyzes the customer and messages required on the fly for them, and deliver a customized message for each customer in their CRM system. Eularis has achieved sales increases of 43% in a recent client engagement implementing this, so this approach has been proven to reap great rewards.
All this requires the skills and understanding of the business issues affecting markets and audiences, as well as the buyer’s decision-making steps and value experience, to equip teams with the tools that make a difference in their customers’ lives.
For more information on the sales process for Pharma in the new digital age, on the new customer journeys and how to equip your team with the right tools to engage at the right time with the right message to the right customers, get in touch with Eularis -http://www.eularis.com/contact-us.