Ask any salesperson and they will say their single biggest problem is trying to get more high quality leads. The problem can be broken up into getting more leads and focusing on the higher quality ones when you do get them. The winning sales team needs to constantly prioritize which leads to focus on and invest their time wisely. Having a clear framework to qualify leads can go a long way in identifying the most promising leads, having tailored conversations and quicker conversions!

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BANT (Budget, Authority, Need, Timeline) is the most commonly used framework for lead qualification. It helps answer, Budget – Is the prospect financially capable of making a purchase? Authority – Do they have the decision-making power or influence? Need – Do they have a genuine requirement that the product or service can address? Timeline – What is the urgency or timeframe for the prospect to make a decision?

BANT qualification isn’t merely a checkpoint; it’s the bedrock upon which we construct a pipeline rich with quality leads, elevating the probability of successful closures. Beyond its strategic value, BANT serves as a structured means to capture and understand the unique needs of each prospect.

It helps Account Executives (AEs) prioritize their time and focus on the deals that are most likely to close. It also helps sales leaders get better estimates of what is a realistic pipeline they are working with to give projections to the CEO and the board.

However, conventional methods of lead scoring such as sales calls, surveys and emails are rife with inefficiencies.

  • Time-consuming: It takes away from the AE’s valuable time which could have been dedicated to other important tasks.
  • Incomplete information: The data gathered manually is often incomplete with missing fields which makes the decision making less robust.
  • Subjectivity: The lead scoring is prone to subjectivity since the criteria for each AE might differ and be influenced by biases or emotions.
  • Scalability: Once the businesses start scaling exponentially, the manual process becomes a limiting factor preventing the business from achieving its potential.

How AI is transforming sales lead scoring?

The integration of AI has emerged as a transformative force, reshaping traditional approaches and augmenting the capabilities of sales teams. AI has become cornerstone in sales with automated lead scoring, personalization at scale, real-time decision support and integrations with CRM systems.

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At Nanonets, AI is an integral part of day to day operations and decision making. With a fast growing customer base across the globe, the teams heavily leverage AI tools to meet customer requests at scale. The AI-BANT Qualification tool helps the sales team to efficiently capture insights during the customer discovery calls, assign lead qualification scores, generate alerts and integrate into the CRM.

The AI-BANT Qualification tool integrates seamlessly with the existing platforms like Zoom, Slack and HubSpot without disrupting the existing workflows. Here’s a step-by-step breakdown of the AI-BANT qualification workflow:

  1. Call transcription: The AI tool runs in background during a zoom call, transcripts the conversation and sends it directly to the Nanonets app.
  2. Data extraction: The call summary is analyzed, and the BANT criteria are picked up and categorized by the relevant labels such as the budget available, decision-making authority, utility of the product, and time of implementation.
  3. Lead scoring: The tool assigns a confidence score to the lead based on the satisfaction of the BANT criteria met and accepts or rejects based on pre-set thresholds.
  4. Send alerts: The tool can be easily integrated into Slack, where a set template highlighting the lead’s personal details, BANT details, and scoring is sent as an alert to Slack channels where the Account Executives can approve the deal creation.
  5. CRM integration: And finally, once the deal is approved, it gets added to the CRM with a single click for further tracking.

But does it work? Can it do a better job than an AE?

To find the impact of the BANT Qualification tool on sales efficiency, we did a study that delves into the critical metric of lead closure. We analyzed over 1500 sales calls done by the AEs and compared their qualification and deal closure rates with the AI-BANT Qualification tool. Here are the results:

When AEs marked BANT details for a lead, here is how it correlated with lead closure:

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When our AI marked BANT details for a lead, here is how it correlated with lead closure:

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Precision and Recall

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This shows that when an AE or AI marked a deal BANT it was equally likely to close. Both had a ~25% Precision or 1/4 chance of closing a deal if marked BANT. Which is inline with industry benchmarks of winning 1/4 deals.

The place where the AI really outperformed and blew the manual review out of the water was in it’s Recall. If a deal was going to close the manual review was only able to accurately mark 41% of those deals as BANT right upfront (since the Authority and Timeline may not always be obvious upfront). But the AI was able to guess this at 81% which means that of all the deals that were going to close it was able to accurately mark 81% of them as BANT.

Cycle Time

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Of the deals that eventually closed, another key metric to observe is the cycle time. It is the time since the first contact was made with the customer till the closing date. A faster cycle time indicates market competitiveness and directly impacts revenue potential. We found that the deals with qualification score of 80+ (on a scale of 1 to 100) assigned by AI have 5-10% shorter cycle times. This can have a significant impact on how sales team prioritizes their pipeline and focus on most promising leads!

Fuzzy BANT

Lead Qualification Process iSEEit | Sales process management for B2B Sales

Additionally, the BANT qualification done by AEs is a binary criteria – either the deal is BANT or not. However, this fails to capture the nuance of which deals have stronger BANT qualification than others. Since AI analyzes all the details and then assigns a qualification score on a scale of 1 to 100, it gives a lot more flexibility to the sales team to tailor their approach for each focus deal.

Dogfooding

In order to capture the experience of dogfooding this product, we asked a few AEs to share their experience of using this tool. Here are some of the benefits they highlighted:

  1. Integrating directly with zoom ensured that none of the important details discussed on the call gets left out. Irrespective of the flow of the call, the BANT information is succinctly and exhaustively captured.
  2. The ‘Approval’ phase allows for the AEs to review the AI generated report before publishing it to the CRM. While the work is largely automated, it’s good to have the option to manually review and edit the BANT summary when needed.
  3. A standardized lead qualification process ensures consistency of ranking across the organization by different AEs. There is much less variance in the lead scoring criteria across the board.
  4. The speed of completion of BANT qualification of leads is phenomenal when compared to the manual scoring. The issues around missing fields and incomplete data are now non-existent.
  5. The time saved by automating this task is now being devoted to more quality conversations with customers and exploring opportunities to develop better products.

The integration of AI into the BANT qualification process has revolutionized the landscape of sales, addressing long-standing inefficiencies and unlocking new levels of precision. The traditional challenges associated with BANT qualification, such as time-consuming manual processes, incomplete data, and subjective lead scoring, find resounding solutions in the capabilities of AI.

The seamless integration of Nanonets AI-BANT Qualification tool with platforms like Zoom, Slack, and HubSpot showcases its adaptability and compatibility with existing workflows from call transcription to CRM integration. It will be interesting to see what innovative possibilities and untapped potentials lie ahead as we continue to blend human intuition with the precision of AI in our pursuit of more efficient, effective, and customer-centric sales strategies.

If you would like to use this tool for yourself, setup a call with us here:



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