The collaboration between sales and marketing is not always optimal. One of the causes is: not speaking the same language. What sales considers a ‘lead’ is probably very different from marketing’s definition of a lead. The BANT can bring clarity to this so that sales and marketing use the same definition for an MQL, for example.
What is BANT?
BANT stands for Budget, Authority, Need & Timeline. This is an example of a Sales Qualification Standard used to distinguish Suspects from Prospects or Leads (depending on the definition). The point is that Marketing Qualified Leads are accepted by Sales and become a Sales Qualified Lead.
What is the budget available for a possible purchase of your service/product. Bandwidths are often used to indicate a budget.
Does your contact person or the team you are in contact with have the right authority concerning the possible purchase of a product or service. Determining this authority is related to gaining insight into the DMU involved in the purchase.
The product or service may be interesting but is there a need for it? Does the prospect have a clear need? Is there a business case?
What is the planning for the purchase of the product or service? Is there insight into it and does it fit within a certain bandwidth?
An example of the importance of a qualification standard such as BANT:
Think of a Mercedes showroom; Marketing makes sure the showroom is full of prospects and the salesman sells the car. However, if marketing chooses to invite a Dutch celebrity such as Roy Donders for a free clothing advice session, the Mercedes showroom may well be full of people. However, it remains to be seen whether these are concrete ‘leads’ that will enable the sales force to sell more.
That is why qualification standards have been created to be able to define the concrete, more short-term sales opportunities. And thus also to obtain more predictability with regard to the future order portfolio.
How to handle this in CRM
In most CRM software, fields can be adjusted manually. This allows you to record qualification standards such as the BANT in the system. In this way, you guarantee the quality of a lead for all employees (sales and marketing).
Click here for an overview of CRM systems and to make a comparison.
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