The Fast-Forward Sales Technique
How to Avoid Budget and Authority Surprises
The Fast-Forward Sales Technique
In the unpredictable world of sales, there’s nothing more frustrating than thinking you’ve got a solid deal in the bag, only to have the prospect backtrack the next day. It’s a common scenario – a prospect assures you they have the budget and authority to make the decision, only for the CEO to intervene with a “not right now” the following day. If this sounds all too familiar, it’s time to incorporate the “Fast-Forward Technique” into your sales strategy.
The Fast-Forward Sales Technique:
The crucial turning point in this scenario often occurs when the sales rep fails to employ what is known as “the Fast-Forward Technique.” This technique involves a strategic question aimed at uncovering the true decision-making dynamics within the prospect’s organization.
Let’s break it down:
1) The Decision-Making Authority Question:
Salesperson: “Mr. Prospect, other than yourself, who else needs to be involved in the decision-making process?”
Prospect: “It’s just me. I make the decision.”
At this point, many salespeople make the mistake of assuming they are speaking to the sole decision-maker and proceed without further investigation.
2) Implementing the Fast-Forward Technique:
Salesperson: “Great! Assume for a moment you end up liking what we have to offer, and let’s say you want to move forward with it… what happens next?”
- Prospect Response 1: “We sign up” (DECISION MAKER!)
- Prospect Response 2: “I’ll meet with my boss” (NOT THE SOLE DECISION MAKER!)
By running the Fast-Forward Technique, you instantly gain insight into the prospect’s decision-making process. If they confirm that they are the ultimate decision-maker, you can move forward confidently. If, however, they mention involving someone else, it’s a signal that further qualification is needed before progressing to the demo or presentation stage.
In the world of sales, assumptions can be costly. The Fast-Forward Technique serves as a powerful tool to navigate through uncertainties and ensure that you are engaging with the real decision-maker. By incorporating this approach into your sales process, you can avoid the all-too-common pitfall of being blindsided by unexpected changes in the prospect’s decision-making dynamics.
Remember, the key to successful sales lies in thorough qualification and understanding the intricacies of your prospect’s decision-making process. So, the next time you’re faced with a prospect who claims to have both budget and authority, don’t forget to fast-forward and uncover the hidden layers of decision-making within their organization. Mastering this technique could be the game-changer that elevates your sales strategy to new heights.
Want to learn more sales techniques like this to use on your next call? Check out our online sales course right now.
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