Marc Beardslee has worked in the pharmaceutical industry for many years, helping to enable sales teams with strong product knowledge. He understands that one of the challenges for a new product launch is quickly establishing a high level of competence within the sales team regarding product and competitive product knowledge. Knowing how to prep your sales team for this situation requires a little help to make this process easier.
Marc Beardslee Examines Steps That Make New Product Sales Easier
Marc Beardslee knows that new pharmaceutical products can be difficult to understand which can make selling these products difficult for some sales teams. For example, new diabetic medications may seem very similar to other products already on the market despite significant differences in mechanisms of action, pharmacokinetics, or drug interactions. This situation requires you and your team to develop and deliver the necessary training that will clearly differentiate your product from the treatment options that are currently available and properly position your product for the ideal patient type.
For instance, Marc Beardslee suggests engaging the subject matter experts from your medical team and having smaller group training sessions on key aspects of the clinical trials of the drug. Even if your team members don’t have significant experience in the disease state, you can still simplify the information to make retention easier. Doing so can help them better explain their features, benefits, potential side effects, and other relevant information when in front of potential customers.
Education is really the biggest thing here, so make sure that your team fully understands the disease state, your product, and how your product is differentiated from the competition. For example, Marc Beardslee strongly suggests that all new product training should be based on sound instructional design methods, focused on adult learning principles, and is delivered using blended learning techniques. This will help ensure the best possible learning experience along with a measurable increase in competency. Understand that market interest is always highest when a new product debuts, but your consumers may not begin prescribing a new medication until several months after it debuts. Just think of the COVID-19 vaccine situation. Some people want to wait to see if a product works well before trying it.
That extra time can give you and your team the room to adjust their sales approach. For example, your go-to-market messaging and positioning may need to be modified based on early customer feedback or you may need to adjust marketing spend allocations based on early market response. However, Beardslee says you need to adhere to regulatory and legal guidelines for on-label promotion when making any alterations to the originally approved materials.
He emphasizes that your team needs to understand exactly what a product may do and how to fit it to a specific market. Take the time to ensure that your team is fully trained on the product messaging they can use and the other soft and hard skills necessary to help your customers navigate the nuances of prescription pull through to maximize the launch of a new product.