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What Healthcare Professionals (HCPs) want

Pharmaceutical representatives are now finding it more difficult to get in the door – with some HCPs limiting access and looking for alternatives to face-to-face presentations.  

What’s the answer?

If your target HCPs or hospitals have made it known that there is limited or no time for the field team, don’t assume that phone calls alone are the answer. A multichannel approach giving your audience a choice of which channel to engage through is the best bet.

Promotional strategies can have a remote layer (phone calls or interactive details) as one layer within a multichannel approach. We have found that using a remote contact centre as part of a multichannel campaign has resulted in contact with approximately 65% of targets deemed hard-to-reach.

How does this work best?

Doctors are busy, true; but when polled, many still indicate a need to have brand information presented to them, and you should therefore aim to develop a contact centre plan that works flexibly in combination with the field teams to deliver that information.

Ideally this process will start with stakeholder mapping, using desk research and the call centre to gather information on channel preference and the best times to call. The concierge remote team can then call and make an appointment for the field or contact centre rep based on customer preference, or indeed a hybrid rep who can handle both functions if the situation warrants it.

Of course, getting this appointment will be tough unless you have established a compelling reason for your target customers to speak with your rep. There must be a value proposition, a true “hook”, otherwise you run the risk of losing the opportunity to continue the call and present the brand detail.

Topics that really resonate with the physician include: impact on patient outcomes, information updates such as new efficacy data or indications, and cost savings for the budget holder.

Once the in-person or e-detail appointment has concluded, follow-up should be agreed, which could be actions such as sending more information via email or scheduling a web conference. Whatever it is, continuing outreach is absolutely critical, whether it be through the remote channel, or in person through referral to a field-based colleague.

Finally, between sales calls, remote or field patient service teams can make sure that HCPs are kept updated with patient support materials and samples in order that your brand stays front of mind.

How do I know if my message will resonate?

Working with a partner experienced in delivering field and remote contact centre solutions will help you determine what works best.

At Ashfield, we develop a call guide for our remote teams, with the product specific information provided by the client. We then review the product messaging and materials for compliance, physician appeal and the ability to drive share of voice and brand adoption via remote channels.

If you have any questions or would like to find out more about Ashfield’s multichannel services, please get in touch. In the UK, please contact Karen Bell on +44 7823 535956 or email Karen Bell. For the US, Europe and Japan, please email Mark Gibson.

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