CCA 6.5 Lesson 5: The mad approach

Let us introduce to you to the best qualifying method that is used in selling. This method is called the MAD Approach. This approach involves concentrating on three areas in screening your prospects. The three areas are money, authority, and desire.

The Three Elements of the MAD Approach

Money: This first qualifying area of money tells you that your prospect must be able to afford your product. The buyer must either have cash, assets that can be turned into cash, or credit worthiness. It is always nice when the buyer has the money to pay for the product. In some cases, the product costs more than the buyer can presently afford. Some examples are a home, a car, or a type of investment. In these situations, the prospect needs to be worthy of credit in order to make the purchase. Many businesses have become conservative in lending credit, and others have discontinued the practice. Credit allows some buyers to purchase the product who normally couldn’t afford the product. This allows you to make additional sales. Some businesses allow prospects to lay products away and pay on them monthly. Remember, money does not have to be in dollars and cents; it can also be in assets and credit.

Authority: A prospect must be eligible or have the authority to buy. Certain products require that the prospect have authority to purchase them. Products like explosives, certain chemicals, and guns are restricted to those who can legally purchase them. Certain drug items must be accompanied by a prescription from a doctor in order to be purchased. In the life insurance industry, unhealthy people who cannot pass the required medical exams and tests are ineligible because they become too high of a risk. As a young boy, a co-signer when was required in order to buy my first car at the age of seventeen. I could not receive credit because I was a minor.

Another interesting item learned in selling products is that some people need to have the confirmation of their partner before making a final decision to buy an item of considerable expense. When selling men’s clothing, a common comment or response was that the male buyer had to have his partner’s approval before making a purchase of this kind. We see that many men need the approval or informal authority from their spouses before making a purchase decision.

When selling to businesses and industrial organizations, it was found out early that many hours were spent giving presentations to people who did not have the company’s authority to make the decision. A seller had to pinpoint the buyer of the organization who was given the authority of the company to make the decision. As experience and wisdom are obtained, a sales professional learns to seek out the person in authority to make buying decisions for the industrial organization and also to recognize the buffers that can stand in the way.

Desire: The third area of the MAD Approach in qualifying prospects is to find out if the prospect wants, desires, or needs your product. Experience in selling has led us to conclude that many people buy when they apparently have little need for the product. Well-known sales trainer Tom Hopkins suggests that most people buy on emotions and then attempt to rationalize the decision after they have bought the product. Desires, needs, and wants are charged up by buying motives. A customer may buy two expensive suits, even though he was just looking at shirts and ties. People will buy products because they become caught up in the mood of buying. Some experienced sales professionals can actually get customers to believe that they must have a certain product, or they won’t be satisfied. If you fail to create a desire and hunger in the heart of the buyer, chances are that the customer will not buy your product. The customer has to see a purpose or use for the product.