Large MSL survey reveals opportunities to leverage measurement in order to optimize impact 

Ahead of the MSL Society webinar entitled ‘Measuring the impact of KOL engagement,’ a survey of registrants was conducted to assess current MSL perspectives on practice regarding KPI / objective setting and measurement. 

576 individuals from 48 countries participated in the survey between April 13 and May 6, 2022. Only completed surveys from individuals that identified their current role as one of the following were included in the analysis: 

• MSLs, Sr. MSLs, Medical Advisors (or equivalent title) n=210 

• Managers / Directors of MSLs (or equivalent title), n=128 

These combined roles contributed responses from a total of 338 individuals from 42 countries, which were analyzed and presented as Global (all countries, including the USA) and USA results. 64% of respondents had three or more years of experience as an MSL/ MSL Manager with 19% having nine or more years of experience.  

58% of respondents were from medium or large pharmaceutical or biotech companies, while 9% were from medical device manufacturers and 5% from companies specializing in diagnostics. 

Quality over quantity 

The survey responses were notable for a clear preference against quantity of interactions as a primary measure of KOL engagement, with 61% of MSLs and 61% of MSL Managers responding ‘no’ to the question “Should the IMPACT of MSL/KOL engagements be primarily measured by tracking the number of engagements/discussions over a specified period of time”   

Opportunity to measure MSL/KOL impact more effectively 

The survey highlighted those opportunities to strengthen the measurement of impact of KOL engagement, with only 49-50% of all surveyed strongly agreeing or somewhat agreeing that their company effectively measures the impact of MSL/KOL engagements. 

Clarity on how Share of Scientific VoiceTM measures Medical Affairs impact   

A key area ultimately addressed in this MSL Society webinar, and other Medical Affairs sessions, was impact measurement with Share of Scientific Voice (SoSV). This pre-webinar survey found that clarity was needed on how SoSV can measure and gain insights to improve MSL impact for a majority of the respondents. 

SoSV is an objective and strategic measure of Medical Affairs data generation, dissemination and expert engagement activities.    

Pioneered by Pharmaspectra, SoSV measures the disseminations of your product and strategic topics across all scientific evidence compared to your competitors.  

Key benefits of Pharmaspectra’s SoSV: 

  • Assess current impact and set more precise KPIs and plans 
  • MSLs can see the experts that are driving the highest impact in an indication and key strategic topics and plan their engagement activities with greater precision 
  • You can measure: 

– Your ongoing SoSV vs competitors 

– SoSV by strategic topic 

– SoSV for individual KOLs and their key topics 

– SoSV at specific congresses 

  • Gain insights to refine your strategy and optimize impact 

Accurate measurement of SoSV requires a complete data set, available exclusively from Pharmaspectra. 

The full results of the survey, including demographics and experience of the respondents, are available in the report  

The MSL Society webinar corresponding to this survey, ‘Measuring the impact of KOL engagement,’ is accessible on demand for MSL Society members via  

For further information on how Share of Scientific VoiceTM can support your MSL and broader Medical Affairs team, email

Below are other recent Pharmaspectra webinars on this topic: 

Share of Scientific Voice measures and supports success in Medical Affairs 

Measuring impact on medical imperatives with Share of Scientific Voice