No matter what industry you're in or who your ideal customer is, the efficiency and productivity of your sales operations and sales pipeline are critical to overall business success. 

But, did you know that about 44 percent of executives believe that their company isn't efficient in successfully managing their sales pipeline? The survey consisted of 62 B2B companies in which 39 percent of them have an annual revenue greater than $1 billion! Another 37 percent of them have revenue of more than $250 million. 

So, if you're having doubts or concerns about how smoothly your sales operations may or may not be running, you're far from alone. Also, the statistics above show that you aren't in bad company either. With the pharma market set to be worth as much as $1.6 trillion by 2020, having a strong sales operations system is essential to remain both competitive and relevant within the industry. 

At this point, you could be thinking, "then how can I boost the productivity of my sales operations?" The answer to that is by using rich pharma data analytics. 

What Exactly Are Data Analytics? 

You've probably noticed the term "data analytics" pop up everywhere on the internet and you've probably heard it mentioned in meetings or at networking events. But, do you know what it is? 

Or, how it can positively benefit your company? 

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Pharma data analytics are aggregated and organized data sets that provide insight into how your business is functioning from end to end. Leveraging this information allows pharma companies to optimize processes, make better decisions, and understand what is working and what needs a little more work. 

Specifically, pharma data analytics allows you to better profile and segment medical practitioners, allowing for a more targeted sales approach. 

So, how can pharma data analytics boost the efficiency of your sales operations? 

The reality is that there are endless ways that data analytics can be beneficial to your company as a whole. The first step is always getting a very clear understanding of the impact of data analytics and knowing what your sales operations decencies are. Then, the correct usage can be implemented and acted upon. 

To use data analytics to boost the efficiency of your sales operations, you need to take into consideration how much data you've gathered and be selective as to what you use for the problems you're currently facing. This, in turn, will drive better results and maximize value across your organization. 

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There are 5 key ways that leveraging smart data analytics can help boost your sales operations efficiency from the ground up: 

  • Maximize Customer Value 
  • Improve Sales Team Performance 
  • Manage or Reduce Operational Costs 
  • Optimize Marketing Opportunities 
  • Empowers Better Decisions 

1. Maximize Customer Value 

Potential customer value, especially lifetime customer value, is a key element of any successful company. That also correlates with companies in the pharmaceutical industry. 

Unfortunately, maximizing customer value is easier said than done within this industry. The general public tends to mistrust the pharmaceutical industry as a whole. So, as a pharma company, how can you maximize customer value without sacrificing the quality of your product? 

The simple answer is by leveraging smart pharma data analytics to build genuine, lasting relationships with your prescribers.

In any relationship, trust and reliability are two essential aspects of long, healthy relationships. The same rules apply for keeping a long-term business relationship. 

If a customer or client of yours is having a problem with a service you provide, how fast are you to respond and solve it? Do you solve it completly or leave some details unresolved? 

These are things to consider when analyzing how you treat your customers. Data analytics play a huge role in building long-term relationships with your customers. 

Data analytics can improve your current Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems by harnessing smart strategies that boost conversion rates, overall prospect engagement, company revenue and customer lifetime value. 

Using data analytics, pharma cloud-based solutions can provide clear insight into how you can effectively manage various customer-driven metrics that contribute to long-term customer relationships; like Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC), Customer Lifetime Value (CLTV).

2. Improving and Streamlining Sales Team Performance 

On top of assisting pharma companies in boosting sales operations, data analytics can improve your overall sales team performance by better predicting the ability to meet time commitments, product requirements, and stock needs. 

Having a solid Sales Reporting System (SRS) in place is one way to leverage these data analytics. 

SRS enables the: 

  • Tracking of sales calls (visits) 
  • Improve turnaround time for customer feedback
  • Identifying areas based on coverage to cross-sell and up-sell 

The data gathered from using SRS can also be used to conduct: 

  • Recency Analysis 
  • Frequency Analysis 
  • Monetary (RFM) Analysis 

P360 SRS Results Graph

CCM Pharmaceuticals implemented Tentacle Technologies SMS-based Sales Reporting System to their marketing strategy and saw the results above after doing so. 

After completely implementing this into their strategy, their overall security was also enhanced with role-based access control. Paired with consistent support. the company was provided with more than 95 percent availability. 

3. More Effectively Manage or Reduce Operational Costs 

The operational costs of running a pharma company are astronomical at best, and that's before the potential risks and pitfalls that the healthcare industry is fraught with. 

Fortunately, leveraging smart pharma data analytics to predict, assess, and avoid risk is one of the best ways to manage and even reduce overall operational costs for a pharmaceutical company. 

Through the use of predictive analytics. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services prevented more than $210.7 million in healthcare fraud in one year. After permanently implementing predictive analytics into their systems, they generated a 2,200 percent return on their technology investment. 

This correlates perfectly with that old saying, "High risk, high reward."

To prevent identify fraud, you must analyze the large unstructured data sets of historical claims your company has available and use algorithms to detect unusual patterns. This is a form of using data analytics to reduce risks. 

The most risk in the pharma industry is within the research and development of new drugs, which directly correlate with the high price tag. 

P360 Healthcare issues Chart

4. Optimize Marketing Investments and Opportunities 

Among all of the data sets and numbers floating around in cyberspace within a pharmaceutical company's analytics platform, are rich insights into how to boost marketing campaigns and even break into new markets! 

This starts by identifying competitive trends in the market and ends with learning about the people you could potentially be serving in that area. 

By implementing data analytics, pharma companies have benefited by: 

  • Integrating all data.
  • Using IT-enabled portfolio decision support to confirm the appropriate distribution of unusual R&D funds. 
  • Raising clinical trial efficiency. 
  • Improving safety and risk management. 

Predictive analytics is an emerging analytical tactic for enabling real-time management of environmental challenges faced by the competition. You can say it's somewhat like a fair way of spying in pharma. 

P360 predictive analytics use chart

Some major reasons pharmaceutical companies are investing in predictive analytics are to...

  • Achieve a competitive edge. 
  • Gain proactive communication. 
  • Have an immediate solution driving capabilities.
  • Having a quick identification of weakness. 

By using data analytics, you can find the new and niche markets to comprehend information from many sources such as: 

  • Demographics
  • Social Media
  • Electronic Medical Records
  • And other sources of data! 

5. Validating Decisions With Relevant Data

A key component of the sales process in any industry is knowing the consumer's decision-making process that must go into play before investing anything. In most industries, this is typically known as the consumer decision journey (CDJ), but in the pharma industry, we call it CareFlow. 

CareFlows are a very important concept for assisting pharma companies in playing an essential role in the decisions patients and healthcare providers make. Thus, ensuring their marketing strategies and offers are:

  • Targeted 
  • Dynamic 
  • Effective 

This unique way of viewing a patient journey allows marketers and sales reps to make better decisions on how to engage with patients naturally and personally. CareFlow also provides information to help an important choice to be made, supporting the execution of that decision and simply relating to the patient. 

TIP: Read the ultimate guide to pharma patient journey mapping for marketers to get insight into how your patients and prescribers think and how to best engage them along their journey! 

Happy little boy after health exam at doctor's office-1

There's almost an infinite amount of relevant and powerful data available to you in the pharma industry. The question is...how will you use it to boost your sales operations efficiency? 

As stated throughout this article, by analyzing the efficiency of your organizations own sales efforts and recording feedback from client visits or calls, you can gain a drastic edge over your competition. 

There are many ways you can leverage data analytics to boost your sales operations. After reading all the benefits data analytics has to offer above, it comes down to choosing the right way(s) to use data analytics to combat any existing deficiencies or to bolster areas which are already doing well. 

Which one of the benefits of data analytics could impact your company the most if leveraged right now? Would you like to learn more about the benefits data analytics has for boosting sales operations? Get in touch with us today to find out how your sales operations process can really turn over a new leaf.

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Also, if you have any additional information or anything else to add about data analytics and all its benefits, share it with us in the comments below!