To Score with Customers, Aim for Yardage Not TouchdownsPharmaceutical and biotechnology companies are beginning to take a more customer-centric view of their operations—standing in customers’ shoes and interacting with them the way customers want, not just delivering a product.

And that means looking at success in a completely different way. To use a football metaphor, you need to worry less about touchdowns and instead focus more on yardage. If you concentrate on gaining yardage, scoring becomes more likely.

Say you’ve been content with “keeping score” by the number of product prescriptions written. It makes sense and has worked well for a long time.

Unfortunately, your customers don’t care about how you’re keeping score, and as access declines and channels proliferate, sales can’t be the sole yardstick to measure success. It’s no longer about touchdowns or asking yourself if you “won” or “lost”—it’s about measuring your progress down the field toward meeting the customer’s wants and needs.

Living in a customer-centric market also means marketing to individual customers rather than a broadcast approach. A physician may want her interactions to be far different than another practicing just a few feet away. That entails creating an ideal customer experience in which you meet that customer’s needs—which vary—and are not necessarily what you want to sell—which doesn’t.

Analytics can help you shape the ideal customer experience, determining how physicians like to be contacted, for example, and what they’re really seeking from a pharma company. Unfortunately, the technical infrastructure at many pharma and biotech companies may be less than ideal, and I have often seen companies with only a vague understanding of their goals before they set out on doing analytics. There’s typically tons of data but little insight.

In a video on analytics and customer centricity, I talk about these themes and propose new ways to look at analytics that will help companies truly take a customer-centric point of view to their sales and marketing efforts.

After you look at the video, I’d like to know what you think of the state of analytics in pharma, and how customer-centricity is forcing companies to rethink their analytics in order to best match the affinities of their customers.

Topics: sales, consumer-centric, pharmaceutical industry, Pratap Khedkar