Using Frameworks to
Qualify Leads

Your guide to qualifying leads.
qualified leads cover photo
Qualifying leads quickly and accurately is one of the most important aspects of any successful SaaS startup. After all, understanding customer needs early on in the sales process helps to create strong relationships, close more deals faster, and ultimately drive revenue growth.

However, navigating a potential customer's requirements can be challenging. This is where lead qualification frameworks come in – they provide SaaS companies with the structure they need to screen out poor-quality leads while recognizing good ones that have real potential.

In this blog post, we'll discuss what lead qualification means for your business and how frameworks can help simplify and streamline the process to maximize conversion rates.

What is a Lead Qualification Framework?

A lead qualification framework is a standardized and structured process used to evaluate leads, to classify them according to their level of interest and potential.

This step-by-step framework relies on consistent procedures that, when followed, enable you to make data-driven decisions on the best approach to take with each lead.

Lead Qualification Frameworks

Lead qualification frameworks generally use a scoring system to rank potential leads based on the data currently available, with a minimum point threshold for separating qualified versus unqualified leads.

Lead scoring involves awarding points when a lead shows any signs of being interested in making a purchase. These signs can come from implicit sources such as behavior and meta-data, or from explicit sources such as verified demographic information and form submissions.

It's up to B2B sellers to develop a point system and threshold appropriate for their business needs.
BANT stands for four essential pieces of information that make up the lead qualification criteria: Budget, Authority, Need, and Timeline.

This framework was developed by IBM and is known for its simplicity, providing a straightforward way for sales representatives to qualify or disqualify leads quickly and efficiently.

BANT is the oldest, the most popular, and B2B-centered framework and is all about the buyer's budget.

However, within this framework, a lead needs to meet all four criteria to be considered "qualified."

These qualifications include budget (are they capable of buying/signing up and can they afford your service?), authority (are they in a position to make a purchase decision?), need (do they have a problem your business can solve?), and time (when are they planning to buy/sign up, and is there a sense of urgency?).

Sales reps often use leading questions to help determine a final decision. For example:

  • How much is your business planning to invest in a solution to your problem?
  • What is the decision-making process in your business?
  • What are the challenges your business is facing?
  • What is your timeline for implementing this solution?
These are just example questions, and it's important to customize them to help identify the most promising leads to pursue.
MEDDIC stands for Metrics, Economic Buyer, Decision Criteria, Decision Process, Identify Pain, and Champion.

This framework requires sales representatives to have a comprehensive understanding of the lead's purchase process. Here are the main components of this framework:

Metrics: Understand the economic impact of the solution and position your solution as one with a good ROI.

Economic Buyer: Identify the person responsible for budgets and the decision-making process.

Decision Criteria: Tailor the way you position your solution based on the lead's formal criteria when comparing products or services.

Decision Process: Learn the process of how decisions are made, who is involved, and what is the usual timeframe.

Identify Pain: Identify the lead's pain points and needs and understand the potential business impact.

Champion: Work with a person on the inside who can influence decisions and sell on your behalf.

This framework is best used when selling to enterprise companies or when the product or service involves a change in behavior or processes for the company that will buy or sign up for it.
The ChAMP framework was designed for modern solution providers in the B2B sales landscape. It focuses on speaking the right language, at the right time, to the right people, in order to find high-value leads.

Unlike BANT, ChAMP puts consumer needs first and emphasizes solving the problem before selling the solution.

The framework acronym represents Challenges, Authority, Money, and Prioritization.

By focusing on challenges, sales teams can more accurately qualify prospects and find solutions to their problems.

ChAMP is useful for sales teams in both small and large companies, especially startups and SaaS Tech, provided that they are willing to focus on a better understanding of their target audience over a long period of time.
This framework, designed by HubSpot, is centered on B2B interactions, focused on details, and aimed at aligning your company with your prospect's resources and objectives.

The framework, named GPCTBA/C&I, stands for Goals, Plans, Challenges, Timeline, Budget, Authority/Negative Consequences, and Positive Implications.

Goals: What are the company's current priorities?

Plans: How does the company plan to achieve these goals?

Challenges: What obstacles does your company anticipate?

Timeline: What is the company's deadline for addressing this issue? What actions will be taken if the deadline isn't met?

Budget: How much has the company already invested in this goal? What is the overall budget for this project?

Authority: Who in the company is responsible for making purchasing decisions? What are their concerns?

Consequences: What will happen if the company doesn't achieve its goals? What is the opportunity cost of maintaining the status quo?

Implications: What opportunities will arise once the goal is achieved? What happens next?

As leads become more educated about various products and services, simple introductions are no longer sufficient.

This is why GPCTBA/C&I necessitates that your team adds value beyond product knowledge. It places the sales rep in an advisory position with a focus on education.

Your team must be knowledgeable about the prospect's sales model, goals, and how your company can help them achieve their vision.
Developed by Ken Krogue, the ANUM sales framework takes the principles from the previously championed BANT and CHAMP frameworks but places more emphasis on Authority over Budget.

Before using ANUM, sales reps should pre-qualify by ensuring leads fit their ideal customer profile (ICP) and asking themselves if they can win the lead.

The first step of ANUM is to establish Authority by finding out who the decision-maker is and if there are any other people who need to be involved in the decision-making process.

The second step is to identify Need by understanding the prospect's underlying needs and challenges and using a consultative approach when making a pitch.

Thirdly, establish Urgency by discovering what else is going on in the company that could help or inhibit closing the sale, as well as asking probing questions.

Lastly, Money takes a backseat since many companies don't have a fixed budget for a specific product or service, instead having decision-makers with enough sway to secure additional budget.

Almost every company can benefit from ANUM, but it may be more optimal for bigger enterprises with intricate decision-making structures.

ANUM is ideal if you want to streamline your processes.

A major advantage of ANUM is that it delivers a clear perspective on your prospective customer and validates if you're heading in the right direction.
The FAINT qualification framework is an alternative to the traditional BANT method that focuses on a prospect's financial capability, rather than budget and need.

FAINT stands for Funds, Authority, Interest, Need, and Timing.

Funds: Prioritize the leads that have the biggest financial accounts.

Authority: Focus on the leads from those big baller accounts who have the authority to decide whether or not your product or service will be purchased.

Interest: By educating these leads on how your product or service may help them grow their businesses to new heights, you can pique their curiosity.

Need: Learn about their requirements and how your offering might meet them.

Timing: Get the lead to verbally commit to doing business with you and to give an approximate time period.

To use the FAINT framework effectively, find out if a company has the money to consider buying your product (e.g. through press releases, quarterly/annual reports, or by asking decision makers).

Connect with decision makers by looking up the company website/LinkedIn and introducing yourself and what your company does.

Generate interest in prospects by explaining your product's impact and how damaging it could be to their business if they do not purchase it.

Position your product as a need-to-have rather than a nice-to-have by asking them what their goals are and finding underlying needs from those goals.

Establish a timeline for purchase intent to ensure the prospect is willing to commit and has an urgent need for your solution.


Lead qualification frameworks are a great way to understand potential buyers.

We can see this in practice with the commonly used BANT, MEDDIC, CHAMP, GPCTBA/C&I, ANUM, and FAINT frameworks – all of which rely on different criteria and offer distinct perspectives.

Ultimately, a lead qualification framework allows us to determine whether or not a lead is worth pursuing effectively.

If you are having trouble qualifying leads or don't have enough staff or time to qualify leads yourself, SalesPipe provides an outsourced SDR service to help identify good-fit leads within your sales pipeline - so why not give it a try?
Related articles
What’s the Difference Between a Prospect and a Lead?
The difference is bigger than you think.
How to Qualify B2B Leads
Lead qualification is vital to getting good customers.
How to Increase Inbound Sales
Building sales pipelines both passively and actively.
What is a Value Proposition? Definition & Examples
Your guide to this crucial sales component.