Evaluating the Market for High-End Medical Devices in Latin America

There’s no question that Latin America can be a tricky market. On the one hand, you have more than 20,000 hospitals in the region, including innovative institutions like Hospital Israelita Albert Einstein in Brazil that utilize cutting-edge technology to treat their patients. On the other hand, significant percentages of hospitals in Latin American countries are public: 58% in Brazil, 61% in Mexico and 51% in both Colombia and Argentina. This typically means tighter budgets and the inability to afford high-end, innovative new equipment and medical devices. In addition, hospitals in Latin America are, on average, 3.5 times smaller than hospitals in the U.S.

This can often pose quandaries for device companies with big plans. Sure, the day-to-day sales strategy for lower-end medical devices is fairly straightforward. But if you have something new, expensive or revolutionary (or all three), you may face challenges in developing an effective sales strategy.

Defining Market Potential for Medical Equipment/Devices in Latin America

Luckily, there are still methods available for getting the data you need for more precise market sizing for innovative but expensive medical devices or equipment in Latin America. Check out the following tips to get started.

Start with “similars.” Develop a list of hospitals that already possess similar equipment to the product you plan to launch, so as to develop a base list.

Analyze attributes. This is trickier, but essential. You’d want to identify the unique characteristics of hospitals that have similar types of equipment. For this you’d need clean data on many hospitals, and then have your team apply linear regression analysis to statistically identify these characteristics.

Widen the net. With unique characteristics established for companies with similar equipment, you’d then have to go further and identify hospitals in Latin America that share these characteristics but DO NOT possess similar equipment: these would be good potential customers.

Discover the drivers. With these potential clients, you need to understand their acquisition drivers—what makes them purchase new equipment. So either your business intelligence team or an experienced research partner would have to talk to a representative amount of these potential clients to understand what leads them to purchase new equipment, especially more leading-edge equipment.

Build a target list. Once you’ve gathered the data and analyzed it strategically, you then have a list of potential clients with strong statistical propensity for acquiring the type of equipment you’re launching—and you also know the motivating factors that leads them to buy. With this, you now can develop a solid, market-based launch strategy for your product and improve your chances of closing.

Why This Approach Is Needed

This data-driven approach may be very different from what you’re used to doing, and in fact, this isn’t very common among companies selling medical devices/equipment in Latin America. More often, companies rely on their sales teams’ personal relationships to drive business. This is fine—but as we noted earlier, Latin America’s medical device and equipment market is both promising and challenging. So what has always worked may not work well now as budgets become tighter and competition strengthens. Business intelligence can provide a crucial edge to make the difference to close the sale. We know this because we’ve directly helped medical device manufacturers successfully drive new business with this intelligence-centered approach.

Contact us to find out more about our HospiScope data and how our business intelligence can help you with market assessments, identifying new clients and growing your sales significantly.

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