Retain Medical Equipment Sales Reps with These 5 Incentive Strategies

by: Mark Herbert May 20, 2021

Let’s take a moment to appreciate how much a medical equipment sales rep has on their shoulders. They need to be familiar with important, sometimes very complex technology and devices used in healthcare. They need to keep up with the safety and health regulations and policies that govern different countries, states, and hospitals. They need to keep their sales numbers up in an industry where budget priorities can change in a flash. Selling medical equipment is often a highly niche skill set that takes many years to develop. You don’t want to lose someone like that to your competition. Risking a high sales rep turnover rate could mean risking your brand reputation and success.

I recommend these five incentive strategies to retain and engage your medical equipment sales reps, so you don’t lose your frontline brand representatives:

Reward sales reps with exciting incentives.

With an effective sales rewards strategy, you can build a sales culture that’s exciting and gives personal significance to achievements.

Non-cash rewards are more effective than cash, both in terms of psychological effect and cost. Cash is intangible, with little sentimental or emotional impact. Sales reps tend to view it no differently than salary and spend it on necessities like bills and gas. Because of this important difference, you end up spending 3X more on cash incentives.

Tangible incentives, by contrast, offer symbolic trophy value that has greater meaning and impact. Additionally, you can play around with how these types of rewards are presented so they’re always fresh and exciting.

Debit/gift card rewards, merchandise rewards, and travel incentives are the most common non-cash rewards. Each has its own unique and advantages, so you can choose the one that best fits your sales goals.

incentive marketingRun multichannel incentive marketing campaigns.

A great sales rewards program needs great reward program marketing to promote it.  A multichannel communications plan is the best way to surround your medical device sales reps. Be sure your communication plan includes text messages, call campaigns, email, and website content can with updates and information. You can then collect your program participants’ contact preference information and send personalized program account and sales promotion information that’s uniquely relevant and exciting for them.

Segment sales reps to make sales promotions more personalized and engaging.

You can segment your sales reps into different groups based on territory, performance, or organization. This allows you to run multiple, simultaneous sales promotions with different qualifiers and goals. Challenge your top-performing sales reps to compete for a luxurious incentive trip, for example, while your standard performers earn smaller-scale merchandise rewards. When using a reward points program, you can set specific reward point values and pay-out so your sales promotions yield greater rewards for the behaviors most important to you.

Enable your sales reps with training incentives.

Sales training is a never-ending endeavor. A medical equipment sales rep is only human and doesn’t retain the information they learn unless that information is constantly reinforced.

To enable and empower your sales reps, you should have a way to quickly create and repeatedly deliver training content that reflects new trends, technology, and regulations in the medical equipment industry. You can offer training in the form of full courses, quizzes, or daily trivia. Bonus: with training incentive technology, sales reps can receive instant feedback and rewards to reinforce. This facilitates the constant product education that keeps your sales reps engaged and equipped to sell your brand.

Harness the fun and functionality of gamification technology.

Gamification, or the application of gaming elements to non-game scenarios, can makes sales promotions and training more engaging and fun. We all know games create positive emotions and reduce stress. But did you know they can also improve brain function? This is why it’s a great idea to add some gaming elements to sales training. Offer rewards, host training competitions, and encourage friendly show-downs.

Some other incentive gamification options include leaderboards, badges, or virtual games of chance like Spin to Win or Scratch Off. You can trigger these last two games of chance during incentive program enrollment, increasing sales reps’ investment in the program and the results it’s likely to yield.

Each medical equipment sales rep you work with has their own unique challenges, motivations, personalities, and relationship to your industry and brand. It’s not always easy to give them all the tools and information they need to succeed. With a sales incentive program that takes advantage of current technology, however, you can create an incentive strategy that’s both powerful and flexible, engaging and training those most important to your sales success.


About Mark Herbert

Mark Herbert is President and CEO of Incentive Solutions. He has more than 30 years of experience overseeing business operations within the incentives industry, helping companies increase channel sales, build customer loyalty, motivate employees, and grow their business.