Clinicians will undoubtedly become increasingly informed about the potential devices, and treatments, that are available to help manage their patients before the medical sales team have even had the opportunity to establish contact regarding their devices. As has been previously described, and increasingly evident, is the increasing number of tools that are available to clinicians to help support their decision making meaning the NEED for sales teams will decrease.
However, whilst there will be increased adoption of digital tools by clinicians, there will also be an increasing number of patients who themselves are becoming more informed about their health and about the medications, and devices, that are available to treat their underlying conditions. Expectations of healthcare and better outcomes will increase which will give suppliers the opportunity to help support their customer base with educational content, consumer insights, and evidence, to help keep them informed about their patient’s knowledge and expectations.
Healthcare suppliers can now engage with patients on social media to better understand their needs, whilst having the potential to use analytics to monitor chat rooms and patient communities which will help them to provide unique insights to provide real value to their customers. This will see a continued shift away from the traditional ‘features and benefits’ sales approach as suppliers move to take a more holistic approach to sales development.
The salesforce model will continue to evolve with a more customer centric model whereby suppliers will aggregate important content, using multiple channels, to ensure they remain relevant to their target market by providing them with the information they need to remain up to date and informed.
In addition to the changing tactics in approaching clinicians, there will be a shift in the approach that is taken with procurement teams, and finance managers. As cost pressures continue, and purchasing teams have an increasing role to play in the procurement of new equipment, there will be an increasing focus on the ‘cost in use’ or ‘total cost of ownership’ of medical devices. Suppliers will be challenged to provide evidence in support of the true costs of using their devices, rather than simply the unit price of equipment, which is often the approach taken by category managers within hospital departments at present.
How are you currently evolving your sales tactics, and marketing, to better serve your customers and stay ahead of the competition?