From Awkward to Awesome: How I Transformed My Medrep Calls (and You Can Too!)

Medical representative call steps

Medical representative call steps help reps prepare and go through a real sales call. This is one of the critical fundamentals of successful pharmaceutical sales and one of the key performance indicators for sales force effectiveness.

Demystifying "Medrep": Your Key to Healthcare's Inner Circle

Ever stumbled across the cryptic term "medrep" and wondered what it hides? It's more than just an alphabet soup acronym. It's your gateway to understanding the fascinating world of healthcare from the inside out. Decoding its meaning unlocks a treasure trove of knowledge:


  • Career Compass: Intrigued by the healthcare industry but unsure where to start? Medreps are the frontlines of patient care innovation, and understanding their role opens doors to exciting career paths you might not have considered.
  • Patient Advocate Appreciation: Ever wonder how the latest medications reach your doctor's doorstep? Medreps are the knowledge navigators, guiding healthcare providers through the ever-evolving landscape of treatment options. Their expertise ensures patients have access to the best possible care, making them unsung heroes in the fight for health.
  • Industry Insider: Beyond the jargon, you'll gain valuable insights into how the healthcare industry functions. Witness the intricate dance between pharmaceutical companies, medical professionals, and patient needs, all orchestrated by the skilled hands of medreps.


But wait, there's more! Peek behind the curtain and discover the specific areas where medreps shine:


  • Drug Detectives: They're not just salespeople – they're educators, meticulously informing doctors about the latest drugs and their potential benefits for patients. Think of them as knowledge brokers, ensuring healthcare providers have the tools they need to make informed decisions.
  • Sample Sherpas: Ever wondered how those free medication samples magically appear in your doctor's office? Medreps are the logistical wizards behind the scenes, ensuring healthcare providers have access to the medications they need to evaluate and prescribe effectively.
  • Feedback Forges: Their role extends beyond simply pushing products. Medreps gather valuable feedback from healthcare providers on existing treatments, helping to shape the future of patient care and ensure medications are truly meeting the needs of those who rely on them most.


So, the next time you encounter "medrep," remember – it's not just a word. It's a window into the heart of healthcare. Embrace the knowledge it unlocks, and you might just find yourself navigating the exciting world of patient care with newfound appreciation and understanding.

Pre-Call Planning For Medical Representative

Alright, let's dive right in.

You know, being a medical representative is a lot like being a detective. It's all about gathering the right clues, piecing them together, and cracking the case. In our case, the "case" is a successful sales call.

Now, pre-call planning?

That's my secret weapon. It's where I pour over the details, scrutinize the facts, and get myself ready for the action ahead.

It starts with doing my homework, learning about the doctor I'm about to meet.

I dig deep into the database, pulling out every scrap of information about them, their needs, their likes, their dislikes. It's not just about their practice; it's about who they are as a person. A birthday, an alma mater, a shared hobby - these small bits of trivia can sometimes swing the game in my favor.

Then I plot my approach.

What's my objective for this call? Is it just to provide information, or am I aiming for a sale? Depending on my goal, I tweak my strategy, ensuring it aligns with the doctor's expectations and needs. Whether it's a detailed presentation or just a brochure, I've got my arsenal ready.

Next, I mentally rehearse the conversation (you’ll find a sample conversation at the end of this post).

Envisioning the entire meeting helps me prepare for any curveballs that might come my way. After all, improvisation is easier when you've already thought of twenty different ways the conversation could go.

Finally, as D-day approaches.

I put myself in a positive mindset. Confidence, I've learned, is infectious. The better I feel about the call, the more likely it is to go well. So, I take a deep breath, put on my best suit, and stride in, ready to make the sale because pre-call planning isn't just a chore. It's the roadmap to success. It's what makes me a formidable medical representative.

After all, in this game, the devil's in the details.

In general, the steps of a call for a medical representative encompass five key activities that lead to a productive sales call:

  1. Identify the information you need before making the sales call, and identify its sources.
  2. Describe the concern of typical Healthcare Providers (HCPs).
  3. Select useful info about HCPs from the existing database and find ways to add more.
  4. Set specific, realistic and result-oriented objectives for the sales call.
  5. Develop a plan to achieve the objectives.

1. Gathering relevant info

There are three useful sources med reps use to get info on their targeted prospects. They are:

i. The pharma company's existing database
ii. Prospects' workplaces
iii. Prospects' Support staffs (nurses, personal assistants, etc.)

The question reps need to ask themselves is, "What information I could gain from...?"

2. Describe HCPs perspective

When describing an HCP's view, a rep needs to know HCP answer to how he/she sees what is being promoted or offered. It is also instrumental in understanding how to add value to the practice. Realized how important it is to get to the customers' side and open them up to hear what is going to be presented. This is a crucial step for a sales call.

2.1 Describing general perspective

You want to be able to describe, based on what you already know of your providers:

i. Factors that affect their time management
ii. Their business concerns
iii. Their Formulary concern (for Institution or Government channels)
iv. Their typical patient's profile
v. Their patients need
vi. The role of their support staffs related to their practice and patients

2.2 Describing individual perspective

For individual provider, you want to be able to see prospects:

i. A special area of interest
ii. Circle of influence
iii. Other interests
iv. Frequent referrals
v. Affiliations

3. Select useful info about prospects

You can't dismiss the fact that HCPs' perspective influence selling. Your sales force effectiveness requires you to manage your health providers' perspective and eventually, their attitude.

Three useful areas you can look into are:

i. Providers attitude towards Pharma industry and companies as a whole
ii. Providers experience in dealing with both
iii. Providers prescribing habit

4. Set specific, realistic and result-oriented objectives for the sales call

Three essential ingredients make sales call goal near perfect:

4.1 Specific

Why is it so hard to make an objective specific?

Answer: fear.

Fear of what?

Fear of creating self-pressure to achieve it.

Isn't that so?

Isn't it simpler to say, "I want to see Doctor A today" instead of saying "I want to see Doctor A today to follow up on Product X sample I gave him last week and to get his commitment to try it on five new patients with his first order."

But such objectives only looks nice on paper during the morning mock-detailing session. In reality, only two persons believe it's the best way to set an intention.

Guess what?

The best incentive payout will also go to those two.

Well, if you make your objective more specific, there's no doubt that you'll be reaping top incentive payout also.

4.2 Result-oriented

Simply means you're clear about the outcome - the product of the call.

Things like:

"to get doctors' commitment to prescribe..."
"to recommend doctors to try on five new patients..."
"to switch doctor from prescribing Product X to Product XX using the clinical trial result to lower patients LDL cholesterol aggressively..." on and so forth.

Basically, it involves an action that you want your customer to take.

4.3 Realistic

"To get prescribers to prescribe Product M 50mg to ten new patients by the end of this week."

For a doctor who sees 50 patients a day and you work five days a week is realistic (that's work out to two patients daily from fifty per day).

But what's real is subjective, and it mostly depends on your customers base and patients load. So you decide what's real and state that in your objective.

Word of caution:
Don't make your real to 'low' and risk complacency. Don't make it too 'high' either and risk frustration. Find a balance. With your background info (Activity 1) this should be a breeze.

5. Develop a plan to achieve the objectives

Here's a simplified version of the program:

5.1 Describe the customers current situation

Take note of what she's prescribing for what treatment.

What her patients demographic like?
Which competitors show traces of their presence?
And other relevant info. The more explicit, the better.

5.2 Recognize your opportunity

Go back to your goal.

What are you trying to achieve here and how fast you want it to happen (immediate, short term, long term)?
How to best position your product offering to the customers?

5.3 Your call objective

Are you transparent with it?

If not, you can always refer.
Just remember to make it specific, result-oriented and realistic.

5.4 Your call strategy

Which key messages and tag line you'll be using?

How are you going to approach the customers?
Any visual aids?
Third party support?

5.5 Your call opening

Just imagine how are you going to attract your customer's attention. That should do the trick.

5.6 Your handling objection strategy

Picture in your mind detailing to the customers or do self-assessment.

What objection you have for 'you'?
How are you going to handle them?

5.7 Your questioning strategy

Don't overlook this strategy.

It has already made or break sales to many medical sales representative out there.

5.8 Gaining commitment

If you're not comfortable with 'commitment,' use 'closing' instead.

But it makes a world of difference from the customers' perspective.

5.9 Improve

What is not perfect yet?

Ask this question, always, after every call or at the end of the day and prosper.

Basically, that's it. Don't try to improve everything at once. Take it to step by step. One step at a time.


That brings result faster and better than 'all-at-once' approach.

Example Of Medical Representative Call Steps

Prospect: Dr. Prospect

Date: Date/Month/Year

Current situation:
Using Product F for to reduce blood pressure (15%). Not keen on using other products due to cost constraint and dosing schedule.

To partner with Mrs. Prospect to provide education program on how to reduce blood pressure. If possible, to put an expert on-site for ease of reference.

Call objective:
To partner with prospect on support program in 3 months time

Call strategy:
Use the leave behind brochure and run a short, 15 minutes, slide presentation on the support program.

This is a simplified example of sales call steps for medical reps. Drill them down to make them more specific and more suited for your portfolio needs, or you can just stick to this outline because it already contains key steps for calls that work for medical sales.

A sample conversation between medical representative ("Rep") and doctor ("Doc"):

A medical rep is having a meaningful conversation with a doctor


Rep: "Good morning, Dr. Prospect. I appreciate you taking the time to meet with me today."

Doc: "Of course, happy to help where I can. What brings you in today?" 

Rep: "I understand you've been using Product F for reducing your patients' blood pressure, but you've also had concerns about cost constraints and dosing schedules. Is that right?" 

Doc: "Yes, that's correct. It's been a bit of a hurdle." 

Rep: "We've heard similar concerns from other healthcare providers, which is why we've been developing a program to address these issues. This program is designed to provide education on how to reduce blood pressure effectively, even considering cost and dosing concerns. If possible, we're also considering having an expert on-site for consultation. Would you be interested in something like this?" 

Doc: "That could be very beneficial. But how exactly would this work?" 

Rep: "We're aiming to partner with you on this support program over the next three months. Our goal is to provide the best possible care to your patients while also addressing the challenges you've been facing. We have some resources to share, including a brochure with more details about the program. Additionally, I have a short 15-minute presentation I can run through right now to give you a better understanding of the support program. Would that be alright with you?" 

Doc: "This sounds like a good opportunity for us. Let's proceed with the presentation."

Rep: "Great, let's get started then. I hope this can be the beginning of a fruitful partnership."


This script uses medical rep call steps example above to guide a discussion around the identified opportunity and call objective. It's always essential to make sure that the conversation meets the needs and interests of the healthcare provider.


  1. As a seasoned medical sales representative, I have learned that there are several best practices that can help you make the most of your calls. First and foremost, it's crucial to be well-prepared before making any calls. This includes researching the healthcare provider, understanding their needs and pain points, and having a clear understanding of the products or solutions that you are offering.

    Another key aspect is to establish a strong rapport with the healthcare provider. This can be done by showing genuine interest in their work and asking questions about their day-to-day operations. By doing so, you will not only build trust but also gain a better understanding of their needs and how your products or solutions can help them.

    In addition, it's important to be professional and organized during your calls. This means having a clear and concise pitch, keeping track of your progress and follow-up actions, and staying focused on the purpose of the call. By doing so, you will be able to communicate effectively and make a lasting impression on the healthcare provider.

    Finally, don't forget to gather feedback and track your progress. This will help you to identify areas for improvement and make necessary adjustments to your approach. By continually striving to improve and staying up-to-date with the latest industry trends and advancements, you can position yourself as a trusted and reliable medical sales representative.

  2. I've learned that effective communication with clients is the key to success as a medical sales rep. Building a strong relationship with your clients is crucial, and it all starts with how you communicate with them. Here are some tips that have worked for me over the years:

    1. Listen actively: It's important to listen to what your clients have to say and understand their needs. Take notes and ask questions to show them that you're paying attention and that their opinions matter.

    2. Be clear and concise: When communicating with your clients, make sure to get your point across clearly and concisely. Avoid using jargon or technical terms that may confuse them.

    3. Be prepared: Before meeting with a client, research their company and industry, and be prepared with relevant information that may interest them. This shows that you're proactive and take your job seriously.

    4. Build rapport: Take time to get to know your clients on a personal level. Building rapport will help establish a positive relationship and make it easier to communicate effectively with them.

    5. Follow up: After meeting with a client, make sure to follow up with them within a reasonable timeframe. This shows that you're attentive and care about the outcome of the meeting.

    In short, effective communication with clients requires active listening, clear and concise language, preparation, rapport building, and follow up. By following these tips, you'll be well on your way to building strong relationships with your clients and achieving success in the field of medical sales.