What Is the MEDDPIC Sales Methodology?
MEDDPIC is one of the most well-known and commonly used sales qualification methodologies used by enterprise B2B sales organizations today.
MEDDPIC and its predecessor MEDDIC were developed by Dick Dunkel of the Parametric Technology Corporation (PTC) in the 1990s. MEDDIC was originally developed to answer three questions Dunkel felt were critical to B2B sales success:
- Why do sales teams win?
- Why do sales teams lose?
- Why do deals slip?
MEDDIC became a standardized system of best practices enterprise sales teams follow during the B2B sales process to identify which of their opportunities are most qualified as quickly and accurately as possible. MEDDIC is an acronym for each of the steps sales teams take in order when following this process: Metrics, Economic buyer, Decision criteria, Decision process, Identify pain, and Champion.
In the years following MEDDIC’s creation, cloud technology made enterprise B2B lead qualification more difficult than ever, ultimately paving the way for the MEDDPIC qualification process. The next section explores what prompted the need for MEDDPIC, as well as the key differences between it and MEDDIC.
MEDDPIC vs. MEDDIC
The advent and proliferation of cloud technology in the B2B space made the paper process, or the actual payment and contract-signing process the seller and buyer have to complete to close the deal, much more complex. Instead of simply signing a single contract for a pre-specified period of time, vendors would have to coordinate multiple subscription plans with their buyers and work out payment logistics on a rolling basis.
Dunkel and PTC understood that for MEDDIC to continue to qualify opportunities accurately and effectively, it would have to evolve to account for the new complexity of the new paper process. That’s where the new “P” in MEDDPIC comes from: “paper process” was separated from the original decision process and became its own new qualifier.
It is generally accepted that most opportunities slip due to a breakdown or lack of understanding of the paper process. Understanding the paper process will help sellers confirm the realistic timeframe for customers to process commercial, legal, and procurement functions related to an order.
Therefore, the full sequence of steps in MEDDPIC are as follows:
- Economic buyer
- Decision criteria
- Decision process
- Paper process
- Identify pain
Why Should You Use MEDDPIC?
When it comes to enterprise B2B sales opportunity qualification, the stakes have never been higher. B2B deals take longer, involve more stakeholders, develop more facets, and require more paperwork than even just a few years ago. Therefore, if your sales team starts down this long process with an unqualified opportunity , they won’t just struggle to close the deal, they’ll waste more time and resources than ever—especially if they get all the way to the paper process segment of the deal.
MEDDPIC was designed to prevent this misallocation of time and resources by helping sales teams identify the right opportunities to pursue as accurately as possible before they invest in moving them through the sales stages. By using MEDDPIC, you’ll pinpoint better opportunities , save time and money, and vastly improve your win rate.
MEDDPIC Sales Qualification Steps
What does the prospect hope to gain from your product or service? A metric should be a quantifiable measure of the value your organization’s products or services can provide. You will use this metric to prove ROI and help the customer build a business case.
Qualified opportunity: The prospect has a clear, measurable metric for determining the value of your product or service. For example, how much time or money they can save as a result of implementing your offering.
Unqualified opportunity: The prospect’s metrics are ambiguous; it is unclear how they will determine the difference your product or service makes.
2. Economic Buyer
The economic buyer actually has the authority to make or approve the purchase. They have ultimate veto or approval power.
Make sure you know who this is, engage them at the right stage of the opportunity, and do the right level of qualification when you meet with them. Otherwise, your deal will be at risk.
Qualified opportunity: Your sales team can identify all of the key decision makers, including the economic buyer, and knows how and when to get in touch with them. You also know how to establish credibility with the economic buyer, such as the objectives they want to achieve.
Unqualified opportunity: It is unclear who is in charge of purchasing or budgeting in the prospect’s organization, or the other contacts are reluctant to introduce you to the economic buyer (which could be a red flag for the opportunity).
3. Decision Criteria
How will the prospect evaluate your product or service compared to other vendor offerings? Decision criteria are the requirements your offering must satisfy for the customer to make an investment. These criteria are typically categorized based on financial, technical, and legal or regulatory requirements.
Qualified opportunity: The prospect’s evaluation criteria matches their metrics for determining success and/or are reasonable in regard to the product or service offered. The economic buyer has signed off on the decision criteria, and your sales team is confident that your offering can satisfy them.
Unqualified opportunity: Your team can’t determine how the prospect will decide whether or not to purchase your product, or they seem to have decision criteria that you can’t satisfy or that has little alignment with the value your offerings provide.
4. Decision Process
What does the prospect’s decision-making process look like? What steps are involved, who will be involved, how long will it take, and what are the possible bottlenecks or pain points that may prevent or slow down the deal?
Qualified opportunity: The prospect’s decision-making process is clear at all stages; your sales team can identify who is in charge of decision making at each level and why.
Unqualified opportunity: The prospect’s decision-making process is ambiguous. Steps aren’t clearly defined, the timeline is well understood, and your sales team is not confident they would know why they may lose the deal.
5. Paper Process
The paper process is often cited as the most common reason why enterprise B2B deals fail today. Your sales team moves a prospect all the way through the pipeline to stated interest, and then, when the time comes to actually agree upon pricing, payment structures, and signing, the deal stalls for months—or forever.
What is the process for getting everything agreed upon and signed once the buyer states interest? How will pricing be determined? Who is in charge of actually signing the contracts, and are you able to contact them? Is your own team prepared to offer a swift and simple process for paperwork?
Qualified opportunity: Your team knows exactly how they are prepared to offer payment, they can clearly explain what payment entails to the prospect, and they know exactly who the key decision makers who have to sign off on the paperwork are and what they will require to sign.
Unqualified opportunity: Your team is unsure how they will negotiate pricing or contract signing with the prospect, they don’t know to whom they will have to speak to begin these negotiations or what these stakeholders will need from them, and/or they aren’t prepared to offer a quick and easy plan for payment.
6. Identify Pain
What are the prospect’s pain points or business challenges? What are the problems your product or service can actually solve for the prospect? Your prospect may or may not be aware of these pain points If they aren’t, help them understand the magnitude of the problem, what the impact would be if they left it unaddressed, and how resolving the issue can help their business initiatives.
Qualified opportunity: The prospect can articulate the pain points, understands the impact, and knows they would genuinely benefit from your products or services (and your sales team is confident they can demonstrate why it’s helpful to the prospect).
Unqualified opportunity: The prospect cannot identify any relevant pain points and/or the pain isn’t compelling enough for them to take action. In these cases, it’s unlikely that your sales team can confidently demonstrate the value of your products or services.
A champion is someone within the prospect’s organization with a vested interest in purchasing your product or service. They are your primary advocate and have the power or influence to help advance the opportunity.
Qualified opportunity: Someone within the prospect’s organization has a vested interest in purchasing your product or service, and your sales team is reasonably confident they will advocate for your product or service, even when you’re not present.
Unqualified opportunity: You cannot identify a champion who has the right level of advocacy or influence and/or they are reluctant to help connect you with others in the organization, such as the economic buyer.
Why Should You Use Templates
The whole purpose of MEDDPIC is to standardize your opportunity qualification process in the most exhaustive and standardized way possible. Using a template for each opportunity you use MEDDPIC to qualify will help your team grow accustomed to applying the framework to net-new opportunities quickly and continuously.
Not only will this help your team apply MEDDPIC more evenly and consistently, but it will also help them learn to apply the process faster, further optimizing your opportunity qualification process.