The traditional approach pharmaceutical reps have taken to reach out to healthcare providers (HCPs) is evolving with the surge in digital options. New ideas to engage and bold innovations in communication are springing from disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic — and sales teams are pivoting in response to these opportunities.
HCPs have transitioned from in-person to virtual patient visits, and they look to their pharma reps to add value by providing enhanced educational support and services. A recent Accenture survey reported that 65% of meetings between HCPs and pharma sales reps have shifted to virtual during the pandemic.1 And, amid the growing comfort level of HCPs with technology, Accenture reported that 87% of HCPs hope to continue virtual meetings or a hybrid of virtual and in-person meetings after the pandemic.1
Thoughtful strategies are critical for Pharma companies to compete for HCPs’ time within this new virtual environment. Reps need to show HCPs the new ways of sharing information and help them learn how to use technology to add value for patients. Strategies for sales teams include a mix of virtual technology, apps, digital interactive tools, artificial intelligence, and more. Some companies even position their sales reps as a hub to coordinate the digital channels. Empathy is now a required competency to make physicians feel heard by asking about their challenges, listening to their concerns, and providing new approaches for an evolving market. Quantity is being replaced with quality when it comes to the frequency of contact with HCPs. Instead of making the expected weekly check-in, sales reps must now create a more meaningful visit. A prime example is Pharma educators who expand the training audience by using virtual meeting technology to bring the entire HCP team together for a learning opportunity.
At Xavier Creative, we specialize in healthcare marketing that thrives in this digitally enabled environment. We offer innovative solutions that help you connect with HCPs and stand head and shoulders above the competition. Marv Woodall, Co-Founder of Thrombolex, shared these thoughts about our approach. “We sought out Xavier Creative House to help us introduce our newly cleared (by the FDA) life-saving device, BASHIRTM Endovascular Catheter, to the medical community, at a time when face to face contact was greatly restricted. XCH proposed an innovative solution that brought our creative medical solution to life, visually. With a unique animated teaching video, coupled with a voice track by our highly experienced Chief Scientific Officer, Dr. Brian Firth, our awareness and credibility were enhanced. In today’s extraordinary business climate, we were elated to find a way to communicate our medical technology with physicians via new channels, including our website, webinars, and lots of virtual meetings. We counted on Xavier Creative House to innovate, and they far exceeded our expectations.”
What are your challenges? Put our BOLDOLOGISTS to work to find innovative solutions that will help you increase your sales growth. Visit us at www.xaviercreative.com and meet Xavier C. Bot, our animated conversational agent, that will help you tour our site and connect with us.
- Reinventing Relevance: New Models for Pharma Engagement with Healthcare Providers in a COVID 19 World. Accenture Healthcare Provider Survey May 2020
- Robin Robinson. The Salesforce of the Future, PharmaVoice, October 2020. https://www.pharmavoice.com/article/2020-10-salesforce/