Sales Methodologies: BANTE vs PUCCKA

In my <a href="http://coreyeastman group collaboration”>previous post, I outlined the PSE Tool and it’s role in evaluating new business opportunities.  If you haven’t read that post, I suggest you check it out HERE before diving into this article.

Most sales opportunities you come across will begin with a customer stating an explicit need. For example:

  • “I need a new website”
  • “I need a mobile app”
  • “I need a tool to help me accomplish A, B and C”

This is a great starting point for a new business opportunity, however the problem is we are missing lots of other important information that is best acquired by listening, questioning and hard fucking work.


Hustler, Talk vs Work

If you were tracking this deal in your pipeline, using a CRM, this should be identified as a deal with approximately 20% potential of closing. This is because it’s missing 4 out of the 5 important elements you’ll need to uncover during the length of your sales cycle.



Enter BANTE, a sales acronym that will help you qualify this deal, and bring it closer to a high percentage win, which stands for:

B = Budget

A = Authority

N = Need

T = Timeline

E = Evaluation criteria

BUDGET:  Does the prospect have a set budget or allocation of funds put aside to solve this problem?

AUTHORITY:  Who is the final decision maker for this need? Who are the other stakeholders involved in this opportunity? In every deal you will usually encounter 6 different stakeholders; economic buyer, decision maker, influencer, sponsor, end user, deal blocker.

NEED: What is the pain the prospect is looking to solve? Why should they buy anything at all?

TIMELINE: When is the prospect looking to make a decision? Is there a compelling event that is causing them to stick to this timeline (i.e conference, acquisition, internal targets that need to be met).

EVALUATION CRITERIA: What are the success metrics they are using to evaluate if this need has been successfully fulfilled? What other firms will they be evaluating to help solve this need?

Mark Suster developed a similar sales methodology called PUCCKA, which is:

P = Pain

U = Unique selling proposition

C = Compelling event

C = Champion

K = Key players

A = Aligned purchasing process

The goal for each methodology is to gather as much information as possible to ensure you are well positioned for success during the lifecycle of the sale.

In an ideal world, you should be able to collect these data points on the first conversation (read: phone call) you have with the prospect. Once you’ve gathered this information you can start to creep up the PSE Tool into the “symptom” box. We’ll get into identifying and capitalizing on customer symptoms in the next post however, for now it’s important to realize that once you’ve moved up the pyramid you’re now set up nicely to deliver more value in the customer/firm relationship.



Sometimes you won’t be able to move up to the “symptom” box, for various reasons, some of which include:

  • Commoditized product offering
  • Price sensitive customer
  • Procurement department opportunity
  • No trust
  • Talking to the wrong customer
  • Lack of sales etiquette

It’s ok if you can’t move up and have to stay within the explicit needs section. If this happens what you need to acknowledge is that you’re most likely going to have to compete against price, and not value. This is because you have failed to deliver an ROI strategy, which beyond sexy numbers, is based on:

  • Establishing trust
  • Building consensus amongst the 6 different stakeholders
  • Communicating the value your solution delivers in respect to the customers problem



As mentioned there are similarities between both BANTE and PUCCKA. To help you uncover the most salient points in your next new business opportunity here’s a quick snapshot of both methodologies side by side.

If you end up designing a new formula, with new elements that work for you then please drop me a note, I would love to hear about it.

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