Healthcare leaders at Boehringer Ingelheim, LEO Pharma and Merck look back on the rapid digital shifts of the last two years and develop relationships and the latest marketing strategies.
EThat very year, innovators and practitioners from across the biopharmacy industry will meet at the Veeva Europe Commercial and Medical Summit to exchange ideas and pave the way for the future of life sciences. At the latest meeting in November 2021, leaders such as Boehringer Ingelheim, Merck and LEO Pharma discussed changes in the commercial model and how the events of the last two years will shape the next 20 years.
Industry leaders have considered the evolution of relationships between life science brands and science professionals, physicians, and other stakeholders in the pharmaceutical ecosystem. In particular, we explored how companies must adapt to new challenges in order to maintain strong customer connections.
Chris Moore, President of Veeva Europe, describes his observations from collaboration with a wide range of leading pharmaceutical companies and up-and-coming biotechnology. In many cases, it was necessary to rely on digital interactions to reach stakeholders during this period. The big question is, now that we have built digital relationships, how can we make them sustainable? And most importantly, how do you make them realistic and relevant? “
The transition to digital engagement mode has steadily accelerated over the last two years. Companies are constantly reassessing how much they return to face-to-face meetings, where healthcare professionals (HCPs) often rely on digital platforms for multi-channel engagement, and the right balance.
Hone your precise engagement skills
For LEO Pharma, it all starts with skill up. The company found that the skills of today’s representatives need to be dramatically different from those of 10 or 15 years ago. In the opening keynote of the Veeva Summit, Monica Shaw, Executive Vice President of Europe, Canada and Australia, said representatives need to be “curious, open and agile.” Today, digital know-how is an important asset for quickly coordinating and iterating engagement strategies.
Peter Guenter, CEO of Merck Healthcare and a member of Merck KGaA’s board of directors, believes that representatives will not disappear, especially in specialized medical care. “The pandemic is fundamentally changing the way we think about market-based models,” he said. “I describe it as a more customer-centric face-to-face model enhanced by digital solutions.”
At Merck, this means taking a more accurate approach to HCP engagement. Guenter explains: This hybrid customer engagement through sales and medical collaboration actually helped increase voice share without increasing the number of contacts and MSLs. “
“Now that we have built digital relationships, how can we make them sustainable? And most importantly, how do we make them realistic and relevant?”
Promote personal connections through relevance and trust
Focusing on digital engagement in recent years, most Veeva Summit participants also said they were considering restructuring the personal connections that accompany face-to-face meetings with HCPs. Physicians need more and more scheduled appointment times for representative or MSL visits, resulting in less physical mixing in waiting rooms and corridor chats, and fewer organic on-the-fly touchpoints. Become.
Given these limitations, attributes such as trust, relevance, speed, proximity, and digital empathy were even more important to HCP, said Timmo Rousku Andersen, Head of Human Pharma Regions at Boehringer Ingelheim. “By ensuring easy, fast, and highly relevant engagement with our customers, we can still maintain that emotional connection,” he said in the event’s keynote. ..
Creating a 360 degree view
With increasing complexity, it can be difficult to identify with whom or the best way to do so. According to the Monica Show, “The world is becoming more complex. There are many stakeholders in every part of the value chain, including how to help payers, customers, or patients understand their illness. Therefore, managing key accounts was probably not as important as it is today. ”
Andersen recommends creating a 360 degree view of each customer. This makes it easier for life sciences organizations to coordinate across multiple medical or commercial teams. “We need to think much more fluently through a range of services, offerings, and interactions,” he said. “Digitalization allows us and our customers to better record, understand, measure and demonstrate the true value of their patients. HCPs are listed on business cards by commerce professionals, MSLs, key account managers and more. I don’t care if they are. They just want us to solve the patient’s problem. “
“The evolution of digital will also impact marketing strategists working to shorten the campaign cycle.”
From solo sports to team efforts
This approach changes the role of representatives and forces field teams to rethink their reliance on personal relationships. Andersen said representatives now need to move from the traditional thinking of “my” customers to “our” customers, and from “friendly faces” to “relevant faces.” I feel it.
He states: “Persons need to make each visit based on everything the company knows about its customers. Second, they need to share the insights they gain, rather than keeping everything in their heads. It’s a shift in thinking that moves us forward and makes us more relevant. “
The evolution of digital will also impact marketing strategists working to shorten their campaign cycle. Life sciences companies admit that it no longer takes months to build marketing promotions based on sales insights. Instead, organizations need to embrace those learnings and turn them into compelling new campaign material in the coming weeks.
Shaw, in addition to the time to market, LEO Pharma correct Content for that customer. She states: “The interesting learning for us during the recent product launch was the kind of information people wanted, as certain content interacts with patients in a digital environment to meet the evolving needs of HCP. We see quite a few pulls, all of which are relevant and add value to our customers on a daily basis. “
The most important point from the Veeva Summit was that commercial and medical teams, face-to-face or remote, need to challenge the status quo to drive effective customer engagement. The organization that will reach the most HCPs in the next 20 years will be the one that provides relevant information through deliberate and timely interactions in all situations.
Commercial innovation and the future of pharmaceuticals
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