According to research published by Statista, pharmaceutical market revenue is estimated to reach US$1,110 billion in the year 2022.1 While pharma companies compete for their share of the pie, several challenges must be addressed. For instance, physicians are becoming increasingly inundated with the additional workload and often resent having to allot time for face-to-face interactions with pharma representatives. Today, pharmaceutical sales training programs need to be designed not only to make the sale but first to earn access.
Harness the Power of Remote Selling
There’s no doubt that many facets of business have gone virtual, and sales and marketing are no exception. However, many pharmaceutical sales training programs have not evolved with the times. Virtual sales meetings are vastly different from formal face-to-face interactions. Thus, they require specific techniques and skills to bridge the virtual divide. Training programs can help representatives build credibility and trust across online platforms. By analyzing and understanding specific challenges and how to overcome them, the sales team will be able to operate with confidence which will help them connect with customers more effectively and efficiently.
Leverage Clinical Data to Support Claims
Sales representatives must learn how to use evidence-based medicine to establish data and personal credibility. Rather than solely focussing on making the sale, they need to help the healthcare provider solve real-time clinical problems. Well-formulated pharmaceutical sales training programs will help the sales team pitch brand-based solutions founded on clinical relevance and statistical research. Knowing when and how to use medical fact-based language can be a powerful tool to differentiate their pitch from that of the competition. Further, this sales technique will help healthcare professionals make more informed and relevant decisions, ultimately benefiting the public.
Prepare for Institutional Sales
Earlier, pharmaceutical representatives focussed their sales efforts on physician-owned practices. Tried and tested techniques often proved beneficial and resulted in significant sales. However, today, these practices have evolved into integrated delivery networks, healthcare systems, and group practices. In some cases, some physicians may be associated with different group practices. This complicates the matter as institutional policies and procedures must be prioritized, and organizational structures must be considered. Pharmaceutical sales training programs should address this factor and help the sales team to navigate these systems while meeting critical regulations and rules.
Stress on Emotional Intelligence
Pharma reps should not limit themselves to product knowledge alone – essential factors such as emotional intelligence and relationship building can help take the sales team to the next level. Today, an influential salesperson will know how to communicate with different stakeholders apart from the primary physician. This could include potential ‘gate-keepers’ such as receptionists or assistants. Pharmaceutical sales training programs can help finetune their interpersonal and conversational skills, which will help build rapport without appearing pushy or fake. An understanding of emotional intelligence can help the salesperson to pick up on cues that are not verbalized and tweak their presentation for the best results. It will also help them identify and control their attitude and emotions and empathize with the customer.
A professionally designed training program can help build an influential sales culture closely tied to market needs. Your sales team will be able to adjust their techniques according to the changing buyer behavior or institutional demands and capitalize on new opportunities. Training can help significantly shorten the sales cycle, thus saving time and effort in the long run.