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FAINT Framework

FAINT framework: All you need to check! 

Key Takeaways
  • 61% of B2B marketers send all the generated leads directly to their sales team. However, just 27% of them are of good quality.
  • Sales qualification frameworks are efficient in discovering qualified leads for the business.
  • FAINT is an advanced qualification framework developed by Mike Shultz.
  • The acronym FAINT stands for Funds, Authority, Interest, Need, and Timing.

Are you stuck in a rut, not driving progress towards your sales conversion goals?  

Unqualified leads can be one of the aspects to look into.  

Do you know?   

61% of B2B marketers send all the generated leads directly to their sales team.  

However, just 27% of them are of good quality.  

So, how do you clinch which leads are ready to start your sales process?  

Simply with an actionable lead qualification framework!  

There are several lead qualification frameworks, but this blog will tell you the most advanced lead qualification methodology- the FAINT framework.   

Let’s get started! 

What is the FAINT framework?  

FAINT is an advanced sales qualification framework developed by Mike Shultz.   

The acronym FAINT stands for Funds, Authority, Interest, Need, and Timing. 

FAINT sales qualification framework

It qualifies a lead based on its available funds, decision-making authority, interest in your product or service, the need for the solution, and the implementation time frame.   

Let’s learn the FAINT qualification framework in detail. 

A detailed process of the FAINT methodology

There are various frameworks for qualifying prospects, but FAINT differs from others due to its unique qualifying attributes. So, here’s all about FAINT questions and process:

 F- Funds  

The initial criteria to qualify leads using a FAINT is to check their funding capability. In this framework, you consider their funds’ availability over budget.  

The difference between these terms is that your prospect may not have a budget allocated to this solution, but they might have the financial capability to make the purchase.    

You can find out about their funds by referring to their most recent financial statements and published information. 

Also, you can check any relevant financial magazine to get information about their latest sales figures or revenue generated.    

You can ask the following questions to check their purchasing power:   

  • Have you ever purchased a solution like this before?    
  • Have you done any business funding in the past?   
  • What does the company’s operating cash flow look like?    

Asking these questions will help you know the financial position of the company.  

Then, once you see the purchasing capability, it’s time you know the right person to contact. 

A- Authority  

The second qualification attribute is knowing the role contacted leads in decision-making.   

You must try to connect to the decision-maker in the first place rather than the one who’ll stretch the process.    

However, if you’re connected with someone who isn’t the decision maker or hasn’t the authority to take the final call, then you should get help from them to get in touch with the right person.  

You can ask the following questions to check if they have the authority to make the final call:   

  • Who all are part of the decision-making?    
  • What other purchase decisions have you taken in the past for the company?   
  • Who is responsible for making the final call?
  • What does the decision-making process look like in your company?   

These questions can help you discover the prospect’s authority and inform you about other important people to include in the discussions.    

The third attribute to qualify the lead is their interest in your offerings. 

I- Interest 

Once you know that your prospect has funding capability and authority, it’s time you create their interest in your offering.    

The right way to do so- generating need or value for your offering to their business.    

So, when the prospect feels that your product/service is adding value, can solve their issue, or overcome roadblocks, they will quickly get interested in your offerings.    

Hence, you must do that carefully, as it can be a deal maker or the breaker.    

Here are some questions that can help you know if they are interested in your product/service:    

  • How does this solution look to you?   
  • What are your impressions of our offer?   
  • Does implementation of this solution make sense for now?   

These questions will help you discover their interest in your product.   

The next qualifier is to see if they see your product as needed.  

N- Need 

At this part of the qualification, you need to turn your product into a need for your prospect.   

The FAINT methodology says that leads will only be needy of your product if they know the value it adds towards the growth.    

Following the FAINT qualification strategy, you can be more focused on experimenting with ways to generate interest/need for your product/services in the eyes of your prospects.  

At this qualification stage, you can create opportunities to place your product as a “must-have” than a “nice-to-have” product.  

And this makes the FAINT different from other qualification frameworks.    

Here are questions that you can ask at this stage of qualification.   

  • What problem does this product solve?   
  • What led you to search for this solution?   
  • How crucial is it to get this solution in place?   

These questions will help you discover the need for your offering to them.   

Lastly, timing is considered a qualifying attribute.  

T- Timing 

Timing is always a critical qualifying attribute to move ahead with your sales process.  

So, at this stage, you need to push the prospective to select a time if they don’t have one.   

This way, you also discover the urgency of your prospect’s purchase.   

You can do so by asking them questions like:   

  • What’s your timeframe for getting this solution implemented?   
  • When’s the latest you’d like to make a decision?   
  • By when are you expecting to get the solution for this?   

The above questions will help you discover their timeframe.   

That’s all about the FAINT qualification methodology. Now, let’s look at an example to understand this framework better. 

A fantastic example of the FAINT qualification framework  

Here’s an example of how you can qualify a lead in the initial conversation using the FAINT qualification methodology: 

John(sales rep)- Hello, this is John from “The Design company.” Am I speaking with Mr Ron, the marketing head of “ABC Bank?” 

Ron(prospect)- Yes. What is this call-in regard to? 

John- This is regarding the form you filled out on our website. I am checking your requirement to serve you better. What exactly are you looking for? 

Ron- Yes, we are looking for UX/UI designs for our mobile banking app.  

John- Sure, can you tell me if you’ve had any services like this before? 

Ron- Yes. We’ve revamped our app once, but to walk with the latest trends, we’re looking forward to doing the same.  

John- Get it. Before we move ahead, please let me know who will be a part of this decision-making process.   

Ron- It would be me and some of my subordinates.  

John- Alright, can you help me with their coordinates, so I can include them in our discussions too?  

Ron- Sure. I’ll text you after the call.  

John- Perfect. I am glad you look at us as a capable solution provider. However, what impressions about our solution attract you the most?  

Ron- It’s the quality of your work. We’ve seen some of your projects from our close industry friends who have experienced your work. And this made us contact you. 

John- Glad to hear that. We’ll deliver our best to you. Further, how crucial is it to get the revamping of the app?   

Ron- It is significant for us at this point.   

John- Understand. And how soon do you want to implement this?  

Ron- We want to finish this by the end of this quarter. 

John- Noted. Can we connect this Thursday for the demo call of our services? 

Ron- Sure. 11:00 AM looks good to me. I’ll share my colleagues’ coordinates, so please send them the invite as well. 

John- Okay, I will do it. It was a pleasure talking with you. I look forward to a fruitful session. 

Ron- Same here, thank you.  

Hope this example was helpful. 

Let’s now look at how the FAINT sales framework differs from BANT.

How does the FAINT differ from the BANT framework? 

BANT sales framework qualifies a lead on the budget, authority, need, and timeframe attributes. On the other hand, the FAINT qualifies a lead on the funds, authority, interest, need, and timeframe.  

There are two specific differences between BANT and FAINT methodology. Let’s understand what they are. 

1. FAINT considers funds over budget 

BANT considers a prospect’s budget, and FAINT considers a prospect’s funds.  

This means the FAINT qualification strategy believes even if the prospect doesn’t have the budget allotted, they can still buy the product/service if they are financially doing well.   

2. FAINT considers interest along with the need  

In the FAINT, creating the lead’s interest in the product is essential before creating its need.   

Once a lead gets interested in your brand, it would be easy to create a need around it.    

You can nurture them timely to convince them your brand is the one-stop solution to their challenges.   

Let’s look at how automation adds value to the FAINT qualification process. 

How to leverage the FAINT framework using automation? 

Automation has become an integral part of today’s sales lead qualification process.   

And while you’re using the FAINT, integrating it with an automated qualification tool like Chatbot can be a game changer.   

A Chatbot can be a powerful tool to enable automation in your qualification strategy as you can easily integrate with the FAINT.  

This means you can set up your Chatbot with certain qualifying questions based on the FAINT qualification framework to qualify web visitors via communication.  

You can easily qualify leads by asking why they visit your site, their funding potential and their authority.  

Have your noticed?  

You can already get qualified leads for the initial two criteria without any support from a dedicated employee.  

It’s done by asking critical questions during the initial qualification.  This will help your sales reps in creating a better sales pitch during their various types of sales calls.

After receiving these details, the Chatbot is set to ask to share a meeting link to book a consultation for a further sales conversation.

So, with a smart chatbot, you automate…  

The usage of a chatbot, aka lead qualification bot, is manifold. First, they boost productivity with automated handling and assist more efficiently 24/7.  

Moreover, this builds trust in your business, as the buyer will feel suitably assisted. 

If you’re in doubt about is FAINT right for your business, clear them out in the next section.

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How to find out if the FAINT framework is right for you? 

By now, you must’ve realized FAINT is a great framework that assures you allot your time and resources effectively.    

It streamlines your process and ensures that you move ahead with leads with a high potential of becoming paying customers.   

If you’re a business looking for interested clients with better funds apart from other aspects of sales qualification, then this is the framework you need.   

Moreover, adopting the FAINT would help when you have a longer sales cycle, like B2B processes. This will help you and your reps save a lot of time.   

In all, those businesses who want to move ahead with potential leads and want to spend their time and resources wisely should adopt the FAINT qualification strategy. 

Wrapping up 

To conclude, you’ve learnt how vital it is for your business to ensure you’re qualifying your sales leads.

A lead qualification framework is a time saver, supports generating high-quality leads and helps prepare a winning sales call pitch.

And FAINT is one of the potential sales frameworks that can help you achieve your conversion with better qualifications.  

You’ve also discovered how to integrate your FAINT qualification methodology with the Chatbot to autopilot your lead qualification process.  

Also, a robust CRM and automation tool can help you achieve the desired success if dealing with long sales cycles. 

Dhanashree Pal

Dhanashree has been into writing since her teens. She believes writing is the best way to express and explain everything happening in this world. Reading and imagining are something she can do for hours. Enthusiastic about exploring new places and food. Young and hopeful of becoming better with every passing day.

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