Jean-Patrick Tsang, PhD & MBA (INSEAD)
Tel: (847)920-1000

Igor Rudychev, PhD
Tel: (847) 679-8278

Reach and Frequency

Establishing who to call on is one of the first questions that needs to be addressed when deploying a sales force. In virtue of the ubiquitous 80-20 rule, we all know we should be focusing on those that generate the bulk of the business. To that end, we rightly establish a pecking order based on some sales/potential criteria. This begs for two operational questions:
  1. What is the right criterion?

    In our opinion, sales responsiveness (how the target professionals respond to promotion) is a much better measure than the mere traditional sales-potential combination mix. Whatever criterion we use, it may not be all encompassing. For instance, known opinion leaders and referral physicians may not write prescriptions, but can have a huge impact on those who do. We need to make sure those audiences are not left out in the final target list.

  2. What is the targeting cut-off point?

    Two types of consideration are in order: financial and market coverage. Financial considerations ensure the last targeted account or physician generates a return that is greater than say, the cost of calling on that account or physician. The pitfall here is this analysis may lead to niche player behavior. Market coverage (e.g. target any city with more than 50,000 people) is another set of considerations we need to factor in to make sure our strategy is in line with management objectives.