Easton, Maryland – June 16, 2015 – For some especially progressive pharmaceutical companies clinical research is now being used not only for developing products but for selling them, according to the newly released 2015 Pharma Selling Trends report from Rising Tide Partners. A handful of pharma companies are driving significant growth using neuroscience to improve the influence and persuasion skills of their sales reps, according to interviews conducted for the report with customers, sales reps, sales leadership, and training experts.

Russell P. Granger, President and CEO of Rising Tide Partners said, “It’s not surprising that a science-based industry would engage science-based selling methodologies, although the effort appears to be concentrated among only the largest and smallest firms. A majority of companies are still struggling with the new realities of consolidation, specialty markets, and other seismic shifts that directly impact selling efforts in healthcare.”

The report finds that while many companies are still trying to get reps to be more consultative and conversant with clinical data, leading-edge firms such as Amgen, AbbVie, Merz, Horizon, and Raptor have gone well beyond what they consider to be table-stakes selling expertise.

“Empirical evidence is vitally important in our industry, but we know from recent brain research that people don’t make decisions based on facts,” said Mike MacLeod, a thirty-year pharma sales veteran and consultant cited in the report. “It’s not just that uninformed or untrained reps are less effective at getting customers to say yes, it’s that they inadvertently get them to say no.”

James Smith, National Managed Care Executive at a large pharmaceutical company specializing in biologics, also cited in the report, agrees: “Salespeople must be trained to know and recognize emotional triggers ­– those that can help them persuade and influence the wide variety of buyers, decision-makers, and influencers they must reach.”

Progressive companies are pursuing what might be characterized as a third phase of selling strategies, according to Russell Granger. “The perks-and-extras era of the 80’s and ’90s gave way to consultative and data-driven approaches in the early 2000s, and now the forward-thinking firms are focused on the neuroscience of influence and persuasion,” he said.

To download the report, visit www.risingtidepartners.com/pharma2015

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About Rising Tide Partners
For over 30 years, Rising Tide Partners (formerly the ProEd Corporation) has helped sales and marketing teams succeed with courses, coaching and consulting centered around business and brand relationships. Our work is in use at some of the largest corporations in the world and at some of the most dynamic start-ups down the street.


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