As the COVID-19 pandemic spread throughout the world, so did major disruption to industries of every kind. Labor shortages, supply chain issues, shifting consumer behavior, and an uncertain economy are just a few of the wild cards businesses have been contending with for the past three years—and medical devices sales is no exception.
Fortunately, commerce is making its comeback. Consumers are active. Businesses are investing in growth. The rebound is accelerating.
What does it mean for the future of medical device sales?
In this article, we’ll explore 3 trends that are impacting the medical device industry in 2023, and the effects those trends will have on sales teams—so you can get your sales content, processes, and expectations ready.
1. Accelerated Technology
Technology is evolving at breakneck speed in the medical device industry. Innovations in 3D printing, more integrated device connectivity, and access to 5G mobile networks are helping fuel these advances, leading to enhanced capabilities across a wide variety of categories—and setting a high bar for the future of medical devices.
Examples of technology advances in action:
- Internet of Medical Things (IoMT)
The Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) allows medical devices and applications to connect with healthcare IT systems. As medical device technology continues to evolve, this seamless integration will play a major role.
- Modern Medical Robots
The da Vinci Surgical System has enabled surgeons to perform delicate, complex operations like never before—and it’s just one example of medical robotics. In fact, the industry is expected to be worth $32.4 billion by 2030.
- Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR)
With these game-changing interactive technologies, surgeons-in-training have endless "patients" to practice on, medical residents can examine virtual human organs, and doctors can visually map out procedures.
From machine learning and AI to tech-driven genomics, wearables, and more, the medical device industry is experiencing a wave of innovation that is just getting started.
What it means for sales teams:
In short, medical devices are becoming more complex. Prospects will often need to grasp new technology before understanding its value. It's more important than ever for sales reps to be empowered with content that clearly demonstrates how their products work and how potential customers stand to benefit.
Unfortunately, many medical device sales teams are plagued with common issues:
- Medical devices are too large, complicated, and/or expensive to demo in person
- Sales reps have to rely on digital sales presentations and slide decks
- Traditional sales decks attempt to explain sophisticated concepts with confusing visuals and too much copy.
Developing a visually compelling sales story is an essential first step to arming reps with the right sales content. When sales presentations illustrate your value proposition in a clear and concise way, they can result in shorter sales cycles, improved close rates, and positive outcomes in situations where a rep isn't even present—such as remote sales pitches, or when presentations are forwarded to additional stakeholders.
2. Continuing Supply Chain Issues
The pandemic has caused major disruptions of all kinds, but some of its most far-reaching impacts are still being felt on the medical device supply chain. Shipping delays, transportation and logistics issues, and material shortages have become commonplace. It's a safe bet that semiconductor shortages and other manufacturing issues will continue to have a ripple effect for the foreseeable future.
What it means for sales teams:
As companies work to adapt their supply chain strategies, sales reps must anticipate continued disruption. This can translate into longer lead times, putting pressure on reps to shorten the sales cycle and get prospects to commit sooner.
One of the most effective ways to shorten the sales cycle is to deliver content tailored to the needs of each prospect. That’s hard to do with a one-size-fits-all sales deck, but easy with a sales story designed for each stage of the buyer journey.
Consider the difference between a concise presentation that addresses a prospect’s needs at a particular point in the sales process, versus an exhaustive PowerPoint deck filled with product features, pricing, industry research, customer testimonials, and more.
A library of shorter, more targeted sales content also provides an agile solution for medical device sales teams. As products continue to be delayed, changed, and substituted, reps will need an efficient way to pivot to alternative solutions in their presentations.
The bottom line: Supply chain disruptions will continue to impact the sales process. Nimble sales teams that can deliver targeted sales content at scale will have a distinct advantage. Organizations with one-size-fits-all, legacy sales decks won’t.
3. Elective Procedures are Back: Can Medical Device Sales Keep Up?
One of the biggest impacts of COVID-19 on the medical community was to bring elective surgeries and procedures to a screeching halt. This included everything from cosmetic procedures like botox and laser hair removal to non-urgent, outpatient surgical procedures. As a result of the halt, demand for medical equipment frequently used for such procedures—and the salesforce needed to sell that equipment—also rapidly declined. Today, nonessential procedures are back, and medical device sales companies are seeing sales activity trend upward in response to that change.
What it means for sales teams:
Medical device manufacturers are embracing rising demand and using it as a driver to invest in more product innovation. Many medical device manufacturers plan to increase R&D spending over the coming year. As new products and technologies are brought to market, sales messaging will need to evolve to keep pace.
Naturally, increases in both demand and production will translate into hiring activity for medical device sales teams. It's important to consider the impact of growing teams on your organization—both from a training and productivity standpoint. Sales leaders need to be prepared with tools and systems that reduce onboarding timeframes and get reps up to speed—and productivity—faster.
It's also an opportunity for companies who have invested more time and effort into developing a more cohesive sales story and a more efficient demo process to outshine competitors that are still battling common sales presentation missteps.
And, of course, more demand means more competition. Clear and instructive product visualizations are the key to differentiating yourself from competitors who are still using legacy sales decks full of bullet points and static images. Prepare yourself now to make sure your team is ready to strike while the iron is hot.
The Time for Medical Device Sales Teams to Modernize is Now.
Nuvue is the Modular Sales System that allows you to do it all with one easy-to-use sales platform. Level up your sales story with expertise built on 25 years and over 20,000 B2B sales presentations. Use powerful, yet simple, tools to build presentations in seconds with company-approved content as modular building blocks in a cloud-based library. Push updates to all of it with the click of a button. Share instantly to any device. Measure, analyze, and improve everything.
Find out how modern medical device sales teams like yours are creating organized sales presentations at scale and fueling efficient growth by scheduling an introduction with Nuvue today.