Situation: A division of the U.S. sales organization at Bausch + Lomb wanted to apply the same visionary ideas to their sales strategy as they do to eye health. Their goal was to increase the return on sales investment for field and inside sales resources by allocating the right amount of time to the right customers in order to get the maximum amount of dollars back from every dollar spent. With hundreds of team members making multiple calls per day at a cost of hundreds of dollars per call, the numbers quickly added up to millions of dollars in sales cost. At that level, even a 1% improvement in productivity makes a difference.
Challenge: Bausch + Lomb asked Alexander Group to develop and test new call strategies and coverage alternatives with specific territories, accounts and sales resources that could be rolled out across the US if proven successful.
Solution: Alexander Group developed several segmentation and call frequency schemes, each of which focused on maximizing revenue growth per the number of calls invested. We used account size, current account sales, sales growth and other variables to segment accounts based on their likelihood to respond to sales coverage and call frequency variations. Using an estimated cost per call for field and inside sales resources, we identified minimum requirements for each call frequency level. AG and Bausch + Lomb jointly picked two of the most promising coverage alternatives and rolled each of them out in five territories in a “test and learn” pilot program. We then developed a monitoring framework to assess the sales team’s adherence to the prescribed call frequency and to monitor monthly sales results over a period of six months.
Benefits: The winning strategy showed a 2% monthly revenue increase compared to the control group, and is expected to pay for itself within nine months when deployed across the country. Increased call frequency provided 5% monthly revenue uplift for some accounts, which were therefore identified as high potential.
By comparing data from the different options Bausch + Lomb were able to hone in on the exact elements that would produce results with the least disruption to their sales process, lock down on those elements and apply them more widely to additional accounts. They didn’t have to increase costs or ask people to do more – and they were able to make intelligent choices about where they would get the biggest return on their investment by discovering where the marginal lifts were. In an economy where literally every penny counts, it was proven that this level of optimization can be an enormous lift to the bottom line.
Customer Quote: “In terms of profitability, even the smallest of improvements translates to meaningful dollars to the bottom line. The team from Alexander Group showed us how to get the most from our sales strategy.”– Aldo Zucaro, Director of Commercial Strategy and Insights, Bausch + Lomb