How can I qualify leads?

Leads are not all created equal. Qualifying and prioritizing leads is an essential part of the sales process. BANT is one of the most well-known sales qualification frameworks.

What is BANT?

To determine whether a sales prospect is a good fit, salespeople can use the BANT sales qualification. BANT allows one to determine the prospect’s fit based on their budget, influence, need, and timeline. BANT is a great tool for B2B businesses.

The acronym BANT stands for:

  • Budget: How much is the prospect willing to spend?

  • Authority: Is the prospect the ultimate decision maker or an influencer?

  • Needs:  What need has the prospect identified?

  • Timeline: Does the prospect have a deadline or project timeline?

BANT was originally conceived by IBM as a way to identify an opportunity. The opportunity is considered validated if the prospect meets three of four BANT items.

How can you use BANT?

BANT can not only help you identify the quality of a prospect, but it can also help you prioritize sales leads and make the best use of your time.

  1. Ask qualifying questions based on the BANT framework during the initial sales contact

  2. Evaluate the quality of the prospect based on the BANT criteria

  3. Prioritize sales leads based on BANT criteria

  4. Pursue and nurture the most qualified sales leads

BANT Today

Over the years, as leads and prospects have become more informed, some have begun to criticize BANT and have developed alternatives.  Many inbound sales teams have adopted GPCTBA/C&I as an alternative sales qualification framework. GPCTBA/C&I shifts the focus from the seller to the buyer.

The acronym GPCTBA/C&I stands for:

  • Goals: What your prospect’s and their company’s goals? Can your product or solution help them achieve these goals?

  • Plans: What is the prospect’s plan to achieve these goals? Will their plan work? Or is there a better way? Does their plan incorporate your product or service?

  • Challenges: What challenges is your prospect facing? Can your product or service help them overcome these challenges?

  • Timeline: What is their timeline for implementing their plan and achieving their goals?

  • Budget: What is their budget? How much can they spend versus how much are they willing to spend?

  • Authority: Who is the decision make? Who are the influencers?

  • Negative Consequences: What are the negative consequence if the goals are not achieved?

  • Positive Implications: What are the positive implications for achieving the goal?

BANT and GPCTBA/C&I are two examples of sales qualification frameworks. There are many more options including:

  • MEDDIC: Metrics, Economic Buyer, Decision Criteria, Decision Process, Identify Pain, & Champion

  • CHAMP: Challenge, Authority, Money, & Prioritization

  • ANUM: Authority, Need, Urgency, & Money

  • FAINT: Funds, Authority, Interest, Need, & Timing

The specific tool that fits your business will depend on your industry, customer type, and products or service. It doesn’t matter which tool you use as long as you have a process for qualifying and prioritizing leads