In most cases, the segment characteristics will remain stable, but individual doctors should change segments as the sales
and marketing approach moves them into higher-prescribing segments, which is the goal of the segmentation and targeting strategy.
However, if a major market event occurs, such as the introduction of a new product or generic, companies may find it appropriate
to conduct a new segmentation study.
To optimize their value, pharma companies must transform hard-core quantitative data into more qualitative human factors that
marketing departments and sales reps can use effectively. Pharma companies usually outsource that whole process to incorporate
the most diverse data sources and technical resources.
But regardless of how companies get the study done, a robust understanding of physicians as human beings, with distinct sets
of attitudes and values, can better position companies to listen and respond to their needs with highly targeted information,
such as thought leader testimonials for those who are most influenced by their peers.
As insiders and outsiders alike continue to scrutinize pharma's sales forces, the industry needs to undertake new approaches
that will make this critical medium more effective. Integrated segmentation promises not only to increase prescribing volumes
but also to generate a positive shift in doctors' perception of reps' value. And that's a critical step in harnessing the
full potential of industry's sales forces.