V Formation’s guest blogger for the life sciences, Jose Gonzalez, explains how pharmaceutical and high-tech businesses can use marketing data to assess potential markets before launching their products in the commercial world.
Identifying potential markets for a novel and niche product or service is critical for commercialisation to be a success. However, simply knowing who your target market is, is not enough to effectively approach them. Pharmaceutical CDMs and other high-tech companies must understand that careful assessment of the market and the identification of potential leads is key for launching a successful commercialisation strategy (as discussed in the Marketing in Niche Markets blog). The best way to assess a potential market is to use business intelligence.
Business intelligence can indicate the most suitable course of action for commercialisation based on the collection and interpretation of data. It is a valuable process that ultimately helps an organisation to predict the behaviour of the market through a critical understanding of the potential market’s economy as well as the environmental factors surrounding it.
The process of decision making by business intelligence is made up of the following stages:
- Planning and conducting: The research questions are set as well as the boundaries. The beginning and the end of the search are determined according to the company´s needs and capabilities.
- Obtaining data: The information resource has a virtually unlimited amount of data that must be processed and refined to match the reach of the research.
- Processing data: All the collected data is integrated and processed. Meaningful relationships and patterns within the information must be highlighted in order to facilitate decision-making.
- Analysis and production: After processing, the information is analysed with help of other tools. Reports containing only the relevant information for the company are created.
Once the information is presented in an easy to understand manner, lead management begins. Lead management is a process that starts with identifying a pool of potential customers and goes all the way to the effective sale of a product or a service. To ensure a successful commercialisation strategy, it is necessary to rank and evaluate the potential leads within the market.
The BANT approach is a tool that has been used by salesmen for decades and it takes into account four aspects that may have an impact on the potential customer’s decision-making process; this acronym stands for the following:
- Budget: Be sure that the potential lead has enough funds to purchase the product or service that you are offering. Information on the buying process of the potential lead is also worth considering.
- Authority: Know the relevant gatekeeper(s) for the buying process. Get to know and keep in touch with the ultimate decision-maker in the company to avoid a long buying process.
- Need: The matter of needing a product or service is the main driver of the relationship between your organisation and the potential lead. Understanding the needs of a potential customer is mandatory as it will allow the sales team to highlight the relevant features of the product or service. Accurately illustrating how you can satisfy a need usually results in a successful sale.
- Timeframe: A potential customer must be ready to use your product or service. If this part of the assessment is overlooked, the sale can be compromised and efforts would have been wasted.
Taking the time to critically prioritise potential leads can save time and money for any company wanting to take their product or service to the commercial world, or looking to expand its existing customer base. The use of business intelligence will provide a more robust commercialisation strategy, particularly for those wanting to enter or expand into foreign markets.