By Edit Lepine
Science-Based Health & Medical Writer
The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in economic lockdowns and travel restrictions of unprecedented magnitude, giving rise to the era of social distancing. These restrictive measures have impacted all industries, with the pharmaceutical industry being no exception.
In this new era of social distancing, many in the pharmaceutical industry have had to rethink their sales force’s role entirely. This is forcing many to replace old models with new technologies to increase revenue. And one area in particular that pharmaceutical sales teams are placing more emphasis on is methods for improving sales targeting.
This is where artificial intelligence (AI) is beginning to flourish within the pharmaceutical industry, as AI-enabled solutions help bridge the gap between the old ways of doing business and new methodologies. The shift from a mass marketing to a targeted marketing approach is underway because of this, and sales forces are becoming smaller and smarter as a result.
AI-Enabled Customer Insights
Companies in the healthcare industry are tapping into AI’s limitless potential to take sales and marketing performance to the next level. One of the most notable ways AI is making an impact is by enhancing decision-making with complex, data-driven insights.
AI helps sales reps gain a deeper understanding of customer profiles, attitudes, and behaviors in ways never before thought possible. And the in-depth knowledge of healthcare provider (HCP) personas and profiles that AI generates considerably improves segmentation and targeting, enabling companies to develop customized marketing strategies much more easily than before. Thanks to AI, marketing departments can succinctly target specific physicians based on patient types, geography, and prescribing behavior without the need for focus groups, surveys, and other market research methodologies.
The BirdzAI sales enablement platform is a good example of this in action. BirdzAI now includes advanced Artificial Intelligence (AI) capabilities that enable real-time decision-making for sales organizations by providing deep insights derived from a wide variety of proprietary and tertiary datasets. Key features include sales forecasting, churn prediction, brand propensity analysis, next best action insights and more.
BirdzAI, which is backed by P360’s robust Data360 commercial data hub, enables life sciences companies to manage their business processes and data from a single platform, eliminating manual work and operational delays. With BirdzAI remote teams are also able to share data with the enterprise without delay, no matter where they might be.
AI-Optimized Multichannel Marketing
Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the frequency of in-person promotional activities such as customer visits, conferences, and meetings has decreased significantly. Remote engagement tools like text messaging, video conferencing, and Swittons have replaced many traditional methods.
Swittons, a “Virtual Rep” Desktop Device for Physicians, is one of the most innovative solutions on the market today. The device offers a secure, real-time communication channel between physicians and Pharma with the click of a button. With Swittons, companies can streamline the most frequent provider requests and eliminate time-consuming emails, phone calls, and unnecessary visits.
While the use of new digital channels has dramatically increased over the past few months, without AI, companies have difficulty measuring their impact on sales results. Sales organizations are left with manual processes, making it difficult to determine which channel generates the most significant ROI.
AI solutions can analyze the impact of their multi-channel promotional investments with ease and can even track past campaign results within a simple, unified analytics dashboard. Tools like this help AI-enabled sales forces to focus on the right HCP at the right time because the AI segments them into the right channel based on past performance and other data.
AI-Enabled Brand Diagnostics
AI can also help marketing teams better understand their brand history, while guiding the brand journey ahead. Considering that most prescription drugs on the market today have multiple indications, it is not difficult to see how a brand can quickly become too complex to comprehend without the help of AI.
When pharmaceutical companies launch therapeutics with multiple uses, they often deploy different sales teams to reach target providers. When this happens, in order to determine the appropriate marketing and sales strategies, it is critical to know which uses are driving the product’s sales. AI analytics can help figure out how such drugs are used overall, helping companies uncover the best sales strategy for their multi-use products.
AI-enabled analytical solutions can track product performance by use, specialty, geography, and business source to guide future marketing and sales efforts. The ability to segment data according to these different criteria helps assess past performance and enables teams to make informed decisions about future strategies.
Smart Sales Team
Every company wants their sales teams to be top performers, but if teams don’t have the right tools and solutions available, this expectation might be hard to meet. For example, AI-enabled CRM systems are far superior to those not supported by the technology. The reason for this is that AI can synthesize data in seconds, helping sales reps to be more efficient and accurate when it comes to pre-call planning, e-detailing, and even guided selling.
With AI, sales reps can consistently make more informed sales calls, leading to a built-in competitive advantage and superior sales results. When representatives have reliable data available to them, they can make more effective sales calls, basing their dialogue on robust insights.
AI-Powered Data Analytics
Artificial intelligence takes Big Data management to new levels by making it much easier to process large volumes of doctor and patient data. AI ensures unmatched data accuracy and high-degree consistency in findings, which are essential for a company to perform at a high level. AI can simplify the interpretation of complex data sets, making the findings easily digestible.
Another advantage AI offers pharmaceutical marketers is that it allows them to predict future results based on currently available datasets. Better yet, they can even help Pharma executives change the predicted outcomes and give them a roadmap to achieve the expected results by changing specific components. When these capabilities are coupled with a simple user interface, companies can test various scenarios to identify new strategies and maximize their revenue potential.
The Future of AI in Pharma Sales
While AI is still relatively new, AI-based technological solutions are well on the way to becoming the future of pharma marketing. When Pharma companies invest in AI, they find that their data becomes far more valuable and useful. This is because AI can provide information to sales and marketing teams that is much more meaningful than traditional methods. And this enables teams to make better business decisions.
AI-driven technology will be a big part of the future of pharmaceutical sales. Companies that embrace AI will undoubtedly get further ahead of their competition, and those that fail to adopt the technology will fall behind.