2020 was a challenging year in many ways. For BioGaia two clear trends can be identified, according to Urban Strindlöv, Executive Vice President Sales at BioGaia.
“Markets with a tradition of working with medical marketing and where sales mainly take place in physical pharmacies, have been hard hit by lockdowns. On the other hand we can see increased sales in markets with a clear omnichannel structure. In the USA and China, for example, we can see sharply increased growth based on the fact that our products are found where the consumer is found – online. Many of our consumers are aware and seek information themselves before buying their product. And to an increasing extent both these actions – searching for information and purchasing – take place online.”
At the same time Urban thinks that it is important to stress that BioGaia’s foundation is well-studied products with documented health benefits. There is therefore no contradiction between working with medical marketing, where the products’ scientific documentation is marketed to doctors, and being listed on Amazon.
“Our distributor in the USA assesses that a large part of online sales is driven by doctors’ recommendations, which underlines the need for a strong omnichannel strategy where the role of doctors continues to be highly significant.”
BioGaia’s sales department is organised in three regions, EMEA, APAC and Americas which are led by regional managers. Urban is head of the department.
“As well as regional managers, each region has key account managers. These work closely with our partners. Several of them also originate from and live in one of the countries in their region,” explains Urban.
“We try to find local people who are well-familiar with the market, at least in their home country and preferably several countries in the region. It is a big advantage, for example, to speak the language and be comfortable with the culture of a region. At the same time it is critical that everybody in the team understands the company BioGaia and our values, ethics and morals,” he concludes.