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The Value of Data in Determining Who Is (And Is Not) a KOL

As an experienced medical team, it is likely that you know who the top experts are in your space. These KOLs are involved in relevant trials, presenting at the top meetings, and are publishing regularly. We get to know these experts and organize our work around ensuring they have the latest science and provide opportunities to share insights that impact our future strategy.

The challenge with developing such intuition is that it often replaces the use of data in decision-making rather than enhancing one’s understanding of data. This can lead to repeatedly engaging the same experts and not seeing changes that are occurring in the medical landscape that should trigger different prioritization.

With the amount of data being generated and shared by our top experts accelerating every year, it is nearly impossible to keep all of these changes in your head. As examples just in the last three months the top experts in asthma had over 1,400 scientific contributions, across several of the top tumor types top oncology experts had over 3,000 contributions in the last three months, and one team’s who focuses on multiple ophthalmology indications have experts with over 1,800 contributions in the last three months.

This is why our top clients put systematic processes in place to regularly identify, prioritize, and plan engagements utilizing a collection of scientific data about experts in your indication. Recently we partnered with Pharmaspectra, the premier global provider of scientific contributor data. While working with one local team a review of this data revealed a 35% shift in KOL segmentation. Now, the new experts revealed were not completely unknown to the team, it was just a new view that changed the team’s understanding of the experts’ influence.

By utilizing KOL scientific contributor data you can:

  1. Identify new contributors: By utilizing data you can see which experts are contributing the most to the indications you are interested in. Whether you are looking for the top global experts, or need to identify who the top contributors are in a small local territory, data will identify these experts.
  2. Identify rising stars: Seeing the acceleration of scientific contributions allows you to identify rising stars as they move from local, to regional, to global influence.
  3. Identify falling stars: When you see in the data a decline in scientific contributions you can quickly see when an expert’s reputation outlasts their contribution to the dissemination of science.
  4. Align experts to specific strategies & tactics: When you have tools that allow you to search for specific contributions and rank them by scientific topics, you can align and rank experts by scientific topic aligned to your strategy.
  5. Stay up to date on changes: While prioritization is important, even more, critical is the ability to stay up to speed on all changes in your territory. With data that refreshes daily, you can be notified of updates triggering opportunities for engagement.

Wherever your medical strategy is headed, when you use KOL data rather than relying on intuition, you are better informed. Make a point of compiling KOL data in order to streamline your medical strategy. Pull together information to create scorecards on each person, whether you get help from Acceleration Point or compile it on your own. Either way, the case for a scientific relevance ranking method is clear—the more relevant a KOL’s work to Medical Affairs strategy, the more reason to engage them.

If you have questions about the value of data in KOL outreach but didn’t see answers here in this piece, reach out to Acceleration Point here.

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