Primary care docs want samples from reps

What do doctors really prefer: A live sales rep or a computer? According to a new survey, the human being wins--at least for primary care doctors collecting drug samples. Some 73 percent of respondents in a DTW Marketing Research study said they'd rather receive hand-delivered samples than order them online. About 20 percent said they preferred e-sampling.

DTW's Christine Alongi said the results should "serve as a word of caution" to drugmakers who are overhauling their marketing operations. E-sampling might save money, but in the end "could negatively affect the overall promotional mix for the brand," Alongi said, as quoted by Medical Marketing & Media.

But these numbers contradict some other research; other studies have shown that doctors increasingly prefer online detailing, because it gives them the opportunity to log on at their leisure, rather than meet during office hours. And as MM&M points out, some drugmakers have actually seen sampling increase with online requisition.

- read the MM&M story