It’s easy to blame the pandemic for disruptions in pharmaceutical sales. Without boots on the ground, marketers pointed fingers to the COVID-19 crisis as a reason for their brand’s stagnant growth. But let’s be frank. The traditional sales model has been shifting long before the pandemic even began. The sales force, which once ballooned to more than 100,000 to call on large numbers of homogenous customers, has been declining for years. The fact is, big, one-size-fits-all sales forces are less nimble and less able to customize their approach based on the changing and more heterogenous needs of their customer base.
Because healthcare delivery has changed, pharma has to shift its approach to sales as well. Our industry is transitioning from a fee-for-service, incentive-based model toward an integrated, coordinated care model based on outcomes and value. In fact, a number of pharma companies have used the pandemic period to revisit their sales model. The transformation is necessary as the number of physicians that sales reps can see continues to dwindle. Marketers will play a crucial role in shaping this transition.
Pete Clancy, Pharma Marketing Strategy Lead at Fishawack Health, breaks down the complicated art of marketing and selling in an account-based environment in the August edition of PM360.
Read the full feature on the PM360 website