Why BANT Stopped Working

For decades BANT has served as a pretty good framework for qualifying opportunities. But it’s no longer the useful tool it once was.

BUDGET

Unless your dream client is already purchasing what you sell, they aren’t likely to have budget set aside for what you sell. This doesn’t mean they don’t have the money. It also doesn’t mean that they won’t spend the money.

The companies you are calling on have the money they need for anything they believe is a priority. If it’s tied to their strategic objectives, they’ll find the money.

How do you show your dream client that what you sell is what they need to achieve their goals and objectives?

AUTHORITY

The idea of authority was used to help salespeople find the one person they need with the formal authority to bind their organization to a deal. This was useful before companies started buying on consensus. Now, there is no decision-maker. Instead, there are decision-makers. I’ve personally sat in a room with 14 stakeholders, all of whom could say no to a deal individually, none who could or would say yes individually.

This doesn’t mean that you don’t need executive sponsorship. You do. You also need consensus.

How do you find the stakeholders you need to build the consensus necessary so that the one person with the formal authority is willing to bind their organization to a contract?

NEED

I’d love to tell you that your dream clients are desperately waiting for you to call on them. It would be wonderful if your dream client’s business would cease existing tomorrow without you and your solution. But your dream client will still exist tomorrow, with or without your solution.

Many of your dream clients aren’t dissatisfied enough to change. This is why ideas like The Challenger Sale and Insight Selling are so sexy; they help you develop a need where none exists. Unless your dream client already buys what you sell, you need to create and develop the need.

This is why you don’t like your leads. You now do the work of “need generation.”

TIME

You aren’t likely to find time as a factor. Your dream client can change today, but tomorrow works too. So does next quarter. Sure they’re leaving money on the table, but they’ve lived with their problems for so long they trust them more than they trust your solution. Your solution means change.

Unless you tie what you sell to your dream client’s strategic objective, and unless your value proposition is compelling because the strategic goal is already compelling. The more you can prove that change is necessary and that sooner is better than later, the more urgency you create.

Filed under: Qualification, Sales 3.0

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