Selling to Doctors - 3 Ways to Develop Strong Selling Relationships

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If you want doctors to prescribe your drugs, use your devices or refer your services, you’ll have to win-over them over, one by one. Winning over means they see you as a resource to protect or enhance their practices. Everybody knows they must see the doctors and not ignore the staffs, but how come most sales people struggle getting to these top dogs; engage them in the professional conversations; and winning their support? The answers are ignorance, fear, and/or obstacles.

Ignorance

Some sales people really think office managers or referral agents can make the deal happen- either by their recommendations or their influence with the doctor - the final authority.

Subordinates cannot approve. They can only recommend. They do have influence, but will they use it, or is it enough to win-over the doctor. Besides what assurances do you have that the message delivered from the staff supports you and is delivered correctly? Finally, how much is the subordinate willing to fight if her recommendation is resisted by the doctor?


Fear

Some sale people are uncomfortable with doctors. Doctors can be intimidating people and make it tough to see them. And then, out of fear, many sales people unconsciously come up with a host of rationalizations, such as, “the doctor is busy,” “he only wants to meet the VP Sales,” “the doctor doesn’t make this decision and is not involved,” etc.

Also some sales people are afraid they will alienate the staff if they continue to seek-out the doctors. So they don’t ask.

Fear or lack of confidence is the biggest reason by far why doctor relationships are not formed. If you are confident you’d negotiate your way around the obstacles. You’d feel at ease meeting with doctors and frustrated if you didn’t. If you are confident, you don’t want to stick with the subordinate because you know s/he is not the decision maker.


If you want bigger sales, faster sales, easier sales you’ll have to develop relationships with the doctors. You’ll also have to sell the staff that you’re valuable to them and it is in their best interests for you to engage with the doctors. So the real sale at the subordinate level is getting them to take you to the doctors and endorse you. This requires confidence, determination and a strategy.


There are three ways to overcome fear and attain this confidence

1. Always assume doctors want to be involved and want to meet you.

2. Prepare for every sales opportunity and every sales call. What will you say to staff members? What will you say if rejected? How will you find out what’s in it for each subordinate so you can win her over to endorse you.

3. Positively project about the sales calls and the sales opportunity. You can think two ways. “This is going to be a great call. I’ve prepared and I’m going to win everyone over to my side.” Or “This call is going nowhere, but the boss says I’ve got to make it.”

Obstacles

Sales people run into gatekeepers and blockers preventing them from reaching the doctors. Actually the biggest blocker is the salesperson him/herself because of fear as explained above.

To overcome blocking yourself, project positively and be determined that you’ve got to develop strong professional relationships with the doctor to succeed. Project positively that the doctor wants to see you. Finally project positively that the office staff wants to help you and will give you critical information about the doctor’s practice and hook you up with the doctor. Project positively and positive things will happen – namely more sales, referrals, and/or prescriptions.

And now I invite you to learn how to overcome ever present gatekeepers and blockers.

Bonus Tip: FREE E-book Getting Past Gatekeepers and Handling Blockers . If you can’t get to the powerful decision makers, you’re depending on others to do your selling for you. The problem is you won’t know what they say, or if they say anything at all. Read this powerful e-book to help you move get to the leader.

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