5 Steps to Effective KOL Management

For companies in the pharmaceuticals, biotechnology and medical devices sector, the presence and role of Key Opinion Leaders (KOLs) is a matter of crucial importance. In order to gain credibility in the market and enhance their market share, these companies need to engage and establish productive relationships with KOLs. This area of KOL management is similar to customer relationship management in many ways.

Just as businesses need to satisfy the needs of their customers, it is also necessary to satisfy Key Opinion Leaders who can have a major impact in establishing a reputation and demand for their products in the market.

Optimal management of relationships with KOLs is critical for the success of a product. It is important to be able to identify potential leaders before they gain popularity and overall credibility, if a manager can build a good rapport with an individual before they become an important figure in the industry, this will ensure a strong relationship.

Here we take a look at 5 important ways in which effective KOL management can be facilitated through a CRM solution:

1. Holistic KOL profiles
CRM software is used to extract complete customer profiles for focused marketing. Furthermore, they point out potential customers and sales opportunities to cash in on. Managers can use this in KOL management by inputting specific data on key opinion leaders to build comprehensive KOL profiles. With specific profiles in hand, one can plan specific strategies to deal with different KOLs. KOL management software will carry complete details about each KOL, from contact information to past history with the company and brand. An effective CRM software will enable users to create a central database of publications, documents, URLs and videos related to KOLs through a Content Library. Access to social profiles through social CRM is an added bonus by enabling real-time access to content posted by KOLs.

2. Optimize relationships
CRM software records individual data on customers and make this information available as and when required. Furthermore, it can extract correlations in this data which may have been indecipherable otherwise. The same can be applied in KOL management. Every key opinion leader will be managed on an individual basis. This minimizes the possibility of relationship mismanagement by making the process much more efficient. Factors such as changes in the market and KOL can be highlighted easily so that these may be dealt with on a proactive basis. Additionally, a CRM solution ensures efficient activity management by ensuring open/ closed tasks and appointments are accessible under relevant records.

3. Ensure company-wide adoption
CRM can provide insights to facilitate adoption of a unified system for managing KOLs across the company. It is important to have a central database of relevant and pertinent KOL information, which can be securely accessed by employees across all functions from different locations. From Marketing to Research & Development, every function can require crucial information on KOLs to make business decisions. CRM solutions also facilitate generation of alerts or enforcement rules to prevent multiple employees from contacting the same key opinion leader.

4. Pinpoint relevant KOLs
One of the biggest advantages of CRM software is its ability to extract only the most relevant information, as and when required. This can be very useful to eliminate all unnecessary information while dealing with specific scenarios. Sometimes you may just need a focused analysis of the KOL data to make a precise decision. CRM provides the basis for such analysis. In case of a specific drug or product trial, one can highlight the relevant KOLs. This can especially work at times of crisis to isolate the most important KOLs for that time.

5. Analyze real-time information
At the end of the day, the aim of KOL management is to provide pertinent information to relevant individuals or roles whenever required. CRM software with KOL Management capabilities provide real-time reports which can facilitate accurate decision making by quantifying and collating details. For example, CRM reports can help managers study detailed reports on all activities related to KOLs for a specific span of time with their related status and due dates.

Establishing and sustaining KOL relationships can be complicated, the slightest mismanagement can have an impact on the company’s credentials and hence on the demand and adoption of their products. Implementing a CRM solution optimizes KOL management and ensures enhanced credibility for products and service.