How to position BANT in a buyer focused world
Depending on what kind of product or solution we’re selling, as well as whether we’re working on inbound or outbound leads, we may ask all of these questions on the first call or work them through a series of sales discovery calls. An important thing to keep in mind is that these aren’t just boxes to check off on our list, we need to add enough value during the sales process so we can earn the right to ask them.
- Seller Focused: Do you have budget?
- Buyer Focused: Can we create enough value to get this project funded?
Unless the customer brings this up first (and even if they do,) we’re best to hold off on the budget question until we better understand what their needs are, who else is involved in the decision making process and how big of a priority this actually is. Have they already set aside budget to get this problem solved? Have they ever bought something before they didn’t initially have budgeted and if so how did they pay for it? Are they already investing in similar or overlapping yet ineffective services we can replace so budget can be reallocated for this project?
- Seller Focused: Who’s the decision maker?
- Buyer Focused: Who else is involved in the decision making process?
It’s important not to try to “get past” the person we’re currently talking to, but rather add value, build trust and try to better understand the overall decision process for these types of initiatives. Even if they are an end user or evaluator who may not be actually signing off, we still need their buy-in. Who else is involved in making the decision and what are their roles? What are the typical steps in the buying process for projects likes this? What are the top priorities when making a decision (lowest cost, security, support, etc)?
- Seller Focused: How soon do you want to get this implemented?
- Buyer Focused: How does this align with your current challenges and priorities?
Do they really need our solution? Possibly. But even if they do, is it evident? As always, we should be focusing on what our clients care about. What is their role and responsibilities? What are their top challenges? If we can find a specific problem we can solve that is tied to a current project they’re working on or a broader company initiative, this will help move our solution from a nice to haveto a need. Ask some additional sales discovery question to determine the overall scope of the issue, how much time and resources are involved and how its effecting revenue streams.
- Seller Focused: How soon can we get this signed?
- Buyer Focused: How soon are you looking to get this problem fixed?
If there is a specific project or initiative we align with, there should be a fairly clear timeline for evaluation and delivery. If there isn’t, we need to look back at the additional information we’ve gathered around why they need it. If it’s taking up a certain amount of resources and we’ve helped a similar client save X%, how valuable would that be to them and how might they better spend the new-found resources elsewhere? If we’ve seen similar clients use our solution to increase revenue by X%, what would that mean to them? If this is interesting enough to evaluate, what do we need to show them to prove its a viable solution? What happens if they do nothing? If there isn’t a compellihg answer to this last question, it should throw up a big red flag.
Using all the information we’ve obtained around BANT, we need to make it easier for our client to buy. If they don’t have an active project but have some interest, we need to work with them to map out who else on their side and ours needs to be involved, what each person cares about and what they need to see / have happen to move forward in the sales process. Once its clear that if we do XYZ and its a slam dunk then we’ve got a deal, we know what nexts steps to execute on.
Thanks for checking out another one of my blogs! You might also like to check out our free one-page Sales Discovery Guide!