Donna Loews oversees content sales relationships at PCG, having previously been Global Sales and Operations Director for BioOne activities. Before joining the BioOne team, Donna represented the northern half of the US for CABI, in addition to managing the CABI team. She also has experience working in public libraries. As a ‘long timer’ – we were keen to get Donna’s perspective on her years at PCG.
You’ve been at PCG for 14 years. What has changed over that period?
Quite a few things, but one that comes to mind is the demand for fact-based evidence in purchasing decisions. Years ago a publisher sales representative could go to a potential client and tell the customer about the value of their offering. Now publishers have to show value, whether they’re trying to get new subscriptions or renewals. Libraries depend on ‘hard facts’ rather than just the skills of persuasion to make their acquisition decisions – luckily at PCG, our teammates have both!
You’ve helped grow PCG into what it is now. What are the key strengths of PCG that clients love?
Up until the beginning of this year, I’ve always been dedicated to a single publisher at a time, but this year my role has changed and I now oversee all of our content sales relationships. Whether it’s managing one or a dozen accounts, the same strengths hold true for PCG: collaboration, knowledge, and transparency.
We don’t use the word ‘client’ as much as we do ‘partner’ – these are partners that we have very close relationships and collaboration with.
All our reps have in depth knowledge about trends, policies and laws in their geography. So when, for example, a country institutes a new tax, our reps are passing this information back to our clients well before the changes have taken place.
Lastly, transparency – our publishers know that we are an extension of their internal staff and that we work hard on their behalf – disclosing everything we do to help promote their business.
Earlier this month PCG announced that they were working for a Mary Ann Liebert across India and Latin America. Deals like this must be a vote of confidence in PCGs regional expertise?
PCG was so pleased to be chosen as Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.’s new sales representation in the two regions you mention. They have a tremendous reputation and the recent impact factor report shows their reputation is well-earned. Our sales teams in these regions are terrific and have the collective knowledge to know how best to work with a range of accounts, from academic and medical to consortia. We look forward to serving Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. in these two dynamic territories for a long time.
What advice would you give to publishers who want to sell in new markets and countries?
Be patient. Breaking in to new markets outside of the US and Europe takes time, even if you are an established publisher. If you’ve partnered with the right sales group, the sales will come, but they can take time. Also, if you can, travel with your sales reps. While at PCG I’ve been lucky enough to travel the globe, and there’s just no substitute for a face-to-face meeting with a potential customer.