In B2B sales, it’s important to focus your team’s limited time and resources on qualified buyers. Early in your sales career, it’s easy to get carried away with obsessing about volume. The idea that more leads correlate to more sales can be deceiving. Instead, what matters more is a higher quantity of qualified prospects. Since you can’t court all of them at once, you should focus on identifying and nurturing the leads that are more likely to convert.
High-performing sales teams use the MEDDIC Sales Process to help them prioritize their leads, which allows them to maximize their impact and sales potential. The MEDDIC acronym stands for:
Below, we’ll break down what each term means and how it can help you and your organization improve efficiency and effectiveness throughout the sales process.
The first step of the MEDDIC sales process requires you to quantify your solution’s impact for the customer.
Three metrics to consider are:
Product or service cost
Revenue or cost savings potential
First, estimate the cost you would charge for your product or service to the customer based on their account size and usage. Then, determine how much value they can generate from utilizing your offering, whether it’s through a quantifiable sales increase or as a cost-savings measure. Lastly, calculate their expected return-on-investment to build a business case that makes your offer a no-brainer for the prospect.
Your highest-potential leads are prospects who have the highest expected ROI from your analysis and are likely to purchase bigger packages from your team. Of course, some customers may be happy with any positive ROI, especially if your solution is easy to implement and there are no switching costs for them.
Remember, you won’t be able to build an ROI-positive business case for every client. In some cases, you may come across ROI-positive instances, but the account size might be too small. Don’t be afraid to disqualify leads and save them in your CRM for potential future outreach. At a later point, these customers might be a better fit for your product or service and might have a much larger budget to spend.
The second step of the MEDDIC sales process requires you to identify the decision-maker at your target organization. It’s important to consider which individuals have the authority to push the purchase through the proper channels and if that person or team also has available budget to invest. In some cases, the economic buyer may be multiple decision-makers. Effective salespeople should always be prepared to navigate discussions and sales pitches with multiple parties to close the deal.
Determine how to reach the economic buyer and assess the best ways to communicate with them through each stage of the sales process. You may have to ask around until you find the appropriate point of contact who you can liaise with throughout the sales process.
To overcome objections and win the sale, smart salespeople should explore the benefits, features, and needs that matter most to their prospects.
Many salespeople lean towards introducing their whole suite of products or services during presentations. While that may feel like you are covering all your bases, a narrower, more focused approach will keep the audience more engaged and receptive to the sales pitch. Seasoned sales professionals utilize the buyer’s decision criteria as an opportunity to better focus their messaging on key details that are more likely to elicit a positive response.
Sales success requires an acute understanding of the things each customer values, along with a persuasive ability to highlight how your solution addresses their unique needs. Keep in mind that the features you feel are incredible about your product or service may be different from the things that the buyer is currently interested in. Spend more time discussing features that the buyer wants now. Wait to upsell other services until after you close the initial sale.
For the fourth step in the MEDDIC sales process, figure out the steps your prospect normally follows when they evaluate a new vendor. Between the chain of command at their organization, the due diligence they may conduct, and the paperwork they may have to complete, there is a lot you as the salesperson must do to accommodate your clients at each stage of the sales funnel. This may require jumping through several unusual hoops and bouncing back-and-forth through the traditional sales process. Ultimately, you should stay agile and nimble since every buyer has their own way of operating.
Ask your customer about what they need to do before committing to a purchase, and remember to reference back to that as you work through your own checklist of things that will convert them into a paying user.
Next, explore each customer’s explicit needs and pain points. Successful salespeople take this opportunity to actively listen to the challenges their customer faces. They try to understand the implications of these issues, whether it’s high costs, productivity bottlenecks, or potential revenue loss. Throughout this discussion, you may also uncover latent needs which can open another entry point for your product or service suite.
Prioritize leads that have clear pain points that your team is well-experienced in solving. Focus on the ways in which your solution can directly help resolve some of their issues and achieve more of their goals.
Finally, to “champion” your lead, find an internal point of contact that clearly sees the value you offer. Leverage their enthusiasm, influence, and ability to repackage the information you share in a manner that’s easily digestible for other decision-makers to ultimately win the sale. Having an ally within the prospect organization helps facilitate more productive conversations and expedite the sales process.
Whenever you can, work with your client-side champion, and spend resources to further cultivate a better relationship with this lead. Oftentimes, champions can help facilitate faster deals, bigger contract sizes, and easier account management. Champions are best in organizations where there are multiple economic buyers since it can be hard to build rapport and nurture relationships with all persons involved in the deal.
As salespeople kick off their careers, it’s important that they utilize a standardized framework for qualifying leads. Processes like MEDDIC outline important identifiers in higher-value prospects. In doing so, sales reps can allocate more time towards leads that are more likely to convert. Of course, as they progress in their sales careers, the most successful salespeople add things to their lead qualification process, generally tailoring it to the different types of prospects in their pipeline and the products or services they promote.
Other popular sales methods to consider include:
BANT: Budget, Authority, Need, and Timeline
NEAT: Needs, Economic impact, Access to authority, and Timeline
SNAP: Simple, iNvaluable, Align, Priorities
SPIN: Situation, Problem, Implication, Need-payoff
More information on these are available in A Brief Summary Of Different Sales Methods (which also includes a quick summary on MEDDIC).
The MEDDIC sales process works best in B2B environments that have longer sales cycles and higher average order values or account sizes. Given limited resources, frameworks such as MEDDIC can help sales teams optimize their effort and time so they can maximize their revenue potential.