Sales Management: Cleaning House - Pharmaceutical Executive


Sales Management: Cleaning House
A well-maintained database is the key to maximum doctor outreach

Pharmaceutical Executive

Half-Good is Not Good Enough

Let's say a pharmaceutical company submitted its database of 140,000 physicians to a data-verification center that offered a source database of 617,000 practicing physicians; it is telephone-verified every six months and is often used in the industry for matching and appending.

Find the Right Targets
Comparing its database against the verifier's, the pharmaceutical company found that 45 percent of its names were valid and correct, 34 percent were corrected with a simple address change, 14 percent were invalid because the physician had either retired or was deceased, and 7 percent were likely invalid records because they could not be verified. In the end, 93 percent of the pharmaceutical company's database was resolved. Had it not taken this initiative, the pharmaceutical company would have been working with data that was less than 50 percent accurate.

Weigh the Costs

Without updating their data assets at regular intervals, pharmaceutical companies risk wasting thousands of dollars in missed appointments, undeliverable mail, and low telephone connects. Even more expensive are the missed opportunities because a message didn't get through to a qualified decision maker.

The benefits far outweigh the costs. In fact, the cost of a data-hygiene service can be recaptured after just one sales or marketing event. A scrubbed database enables you to send information that is more relevant, put sales reps on the right course, improve office relationships, make smarter decisions about segmenting, and contribute positively to the bottom line.

Jack Schember is director of marketing at SK&A Information Services. He can be reached at


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