While it’s true that sales your skills are transferable between industries and sectors, the power of specialist knowledge should never be underestimated. Many salespeople focus their entire careers in a single sector, fine tuning their understanding of the client mindset and other nuances inside a given space.
The healthcare industry is one such a sector and, if you consider the sizeable commissions available, the competitive nature of the environment and the sheer caliber of the salespeople in the arena, few industries merit specialization to the same extent.
Furthermore, doctors are a very particular breed of client and the dynamics of their business represent some unique challenges when it comes to you both hitting your sales targets. Here are some solid strategic tips for the discerning healthcare sales professional.
Focusing on Relationships
Go the extra mile when building relationships with those who work closely with the doctors. It goes without saying that there are other salespeople selling the same drugs passed under the same regulations at the same price. Often, your product offers no real improvement in quality over the competition.
This means an improvement in the quality of your relationships should be a priority if you want to differentiate yourself and stand out. Always, consider stopping by with doughnuts on your way past the practice and befriend office managers and secretaries alike.
Find out When the Doctor Starts Their Day
The first piece of intelligence to gather is when the doctor starts their day. With reliable intel about their schedules, you can start planning your own to make sure you’re in the right place at the right time as often as possible.
If you just happened to be in the area on any given morning when the doctor is on her or his way into work, you’re likely to at least make an introduction; hopefully more. It’s tricky to pin down a doctor for facetime, so you’ll find this approach invaluable.
Identify & Buy Lunch for an Existing Supplier
If you’re having trouble making contact or identifying key decision-makers and other important staff members, it’s time to head over to LinkedIn. Dig out another supplier and Connect with them, offering to buy them lunch in an appropriate way that’s appropriate for the situation.
It’s important to make sure you’re not in immediate competition with these people, but a 20 min conversation over a decent sandwich and a latte could see you quickly identifying key people in the surgery or practice and possibly even forming a symbiotic relationship with someone in a way that will help you both hit targets in the long term.
Being Considerate of the Doctors Time
Doctors don’t want to commit too much time to a long sales presentation, especially with a salesperson they don’t yet know very well. Because you now have key intel on decision-makers and the doctors schedule, you can organize a seemingly impromptu meeting in a way that doesn’t require the doctor taking time out of a valuable schedule.
Let them know that you’re aware of how busy they must be and keep it short and concise and if they join you for a quick coffee outside the practice tomorrow, you’ll bring the latte’s.
Not only will you find yourself with a much more attentive listener, but the consideration you’ve shown the doctor regarding their schedule will not go unnoticed and will no doubt score you bonus points. Use these tips and watch them pay dividends.