Life science sales reps—what’s new?

“I’m the New England man. I’m vital in New England,” says Willy Loman, the beleaguered protagonist in Death of a Salesman. Ever wonder what Willy’s product was? Playwright Arthur Miller doesn’t say.

Perhaps he was a life science supplier sales rep. After all, New England would have been a prime territory, and at one time, life science supplier sales reps would have been “pounding the pavement” and “beating on doors,” just like Willy Loman did.

But that was then. That model of selling is long gone. Thanks to the Internet and eCommerce platforms, analytical and life science instrument markets are increasingly consumer-driven, and many suppliers are seeking new ways to reach out to labs.

While it’s no surprise that labs are gaining more control over the buying process, the real question is how to deploy a sales force to build relationships, act as intermediary between labs and suppliers and, well, increase sales.

Enter our newest report, Life Science Sales Reps: Guide to Best Practices in 2012. We’ve asked over 1,000 scientists how they want to be treated by sales reps, where they get their product information and how they place orders. We also asked them to rank life science supplier sales reps on various attributes.

Check out the executive summary here if you are the one charged with training, deploying and/or being a life science sales representative.

Here’s a key finding that might interest you:

Percent of respondents who frequently consult with a sales rep before deciding which product to purchase by consumable category.

Some companies are being dragged into the 21st century, while others are pioneers. Where does your company fit in here? Leave a comment and let us know.