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    Medical Representative Call Steps

    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.

    In general, 5 activities lead to useful medical reps 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..."

    ...so 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: Mrs. 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.

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