"Organizational Silos" and “Gaining Internal Buy-In For New Initiatives” Identified as the Biggest Hurdles Faced by Pharma Marketers
Silos and inconsistencies arise from each function within the marketing team having their own objectives. There is a need to evaluate each function's performance at a higher organizational level without losing sights of their own objective, say speakers at the Multichannel Engagement USA conference.
In a pre-summit Q&A, industry leaders shared their key insights into how to overcome the traditional, siloed mentality towards sales and marketing which has always been so counter-productive for improving both functions across the business.
"Everyone is responsible for [breaking down the organizational silos to creating cross-functional synergy]. This is ultimately a question of organizational culture. This can't be addressed structurally. If the business encourages and rewards cross-cultural collaboration and synergies vs. "siloed" behaviors, and provides negative consequences when that is not seen, then the organization will get cross-functional synergy they seek," says Eric Rothstein, Executive Director, US Customer Contact Center at Merck.
While senior marketing personnel should be responsible for his or her brand and the associated extended brand teams, the center of excellence is best positioned to break down silos as they are the group that sees interactions across all channels and for multiple brands, especially when the company has a portfolio of products.
One way of evaluating performance is identifying the marketers or marketing teams that are breaking through the status quo with new ideas and programs which bring incrementally measured results. It is essential to know what teams are leading the way for other marketers, e.g. if their ideas are copied by other marketing teams. Another way is measuring reach and frequency of communication with customers, and whether it’s aligned with specific brand objectives.
"It is important to look at the company or business unit as a WHOLE revenue target and understand profitability that each product contributed to the portfolio," comments Kara Zubey, Senior Director, Business Strategy at Endo Pharmaceuticals.
"We need to focus on the outcome of the ultimate contribution to achieving the organization's business objective. The more that these outcome measures can be objective, the better we're able to compare performance across different functions," Rothstein adds.
New initiatives, unless proven to be valuable outside of an organization, need to be piloted, and positive results are most likely to guarantee a buy-in. Prescription lift and ROI are the most relevant metrics in the industry that is still driven by product sales, although some suggest that other metrics, e.g. reduced time, reduced expense, or improved customer satisfaction can be beneficial even if not tied to a revenue impact per se. Still others argue that pharma need a mindset change. “We have to be more willing to quickly test new tactics, quickly measure the results and quickly kill it or adjust based on key learnings,” observes Dave Moore, Chief Business Officer at Ocera Therapeutics. Overall, there seems to be the need for some autonomy for the marketing teams to have some room to try new things, even if just a small pilot to prove a concept before a larger roll put.
For more information on this year’s Multichannel Engagement USA summit, to find out which key industry leaders will be speaking or to see the agenda, visit the official website.
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