The Creativity used to invent new applications, new spaces where your product can fit. The natural thing is to look for direct competition but the GDN must try to think ‘outside the box’ and consider new competitors, starting with indirectly competing technologies.
The Product knowledge is critical to know how far we can fit into a new sector. You have to master the characteristics, the functionalities, and the limitations since otherwise, we will waste a lot of time trying to find out compatibility or we will keep other colleagues who do it for us busy.
The relationships are critical to the long – term confidence is to be built from the first contact the customer trying to understand, your needs, your world. It is not about selling something, but about solving problems in a practical and competitive way.
And that’s it? Of course not…
The responsibilities of the Business Development Manager are often not clearly defined and are tailored to the organization, its market environment and the people in the position.
However, the common denominator is to generate new businesses and / or increase the existing one.
How do you manage to develop a new business?
Years ago at a meeting in Germany I was proposing a collaboration to a company, demonstrating how our synergy could generate an alternative, innovative and interesting solution for new customers who had a very specific problem.
The Commercial Director came in and, not without a certain trifle, said to me: And you, you don’t want to sell me something, do you? I do not have time for this.
I don’t want to sell you anything, I replied, I just think that together we can find solutions for new customers and new markets.
My answer reassured him and we finally sat down to work.
The Business Development Manager Toolbox
Study the markets
Designing or buying market research is the fastest and most effective way to focus your shot and focus your strategy.
Approaching an infinite number of possible targets is impossible and therefore prioritization is necessary. To do this, all potential markets and opportunities must be investigated and successively assessed with the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) the opportunities offered by each one.
Never choose a priori, never be prejudiced.
It is necessary to be proactive and not enter the “firefighter dynamics”, that is, put out fires as they occur. The GDN must take the time necessary to analyze, set objectives and formulate strategies.
A common mistake is to think that everything has to be new and there is no need to investigate existing relationships. However, gaps and opportunities can appear, even with the most consolidated client.
Collaborations with other areas of the company
From the commercial phase to the post sale and through the technical departments. All the functions of the company must participate in the business development process and contribute knowledge and ideas. How much these departments are able to contribute will depend on the GDN’s management and negotiation capacity. It is not about -only- selling a project to a client, but also selling an idea within the company so that everyone can join and work to achieve the objective.
I always find it very useful to carry out a Marketing Plan with which the information of the project or product to be carried out can be organized.
It is essential, I insist, that both the objectives and the strategy be shared among all the actors involved. Otherwise, it will be a certain failure.
The GDN is a function that can cause conflicts.
In any organization, large or small, the difference is made by people. The same procedure in the hands of different people can lead to surprisingly different results depending on the attitude and motivations of each one.
You have to understand the people with whom you have to collaborate, get their true motivations, their limitations and their strengths.
Sure you will find impossible cases, but do not waste time with them and focus on colleagues, channels and teams that do give you security and guarantee collaboration.
Invent new products or variants
I mentioned at the beginning that creativity is a fundamental ingredient for the success of the GDN. This skill will serve to find new situations, new opportunities, invent them and create them when they are not yet clear.
On the other hand, creativity can be exploited with the product or services we offer. New versions, variants and accessories open up new possibilities and most of the time it is not about drastic changes but rather superficial rethinking. However, they are very effective: CKD kit, unfinished products, simplified versions of the product but also new financial and pre and post sales support services can serve to open new doors and gradually access new businesses.
Attending sector events is necessary for several reasons, some more obvious and others less obvious. Even though sometimes you have the feeling of wasting time or not being productive, put some events on the agenda, just be careful to select them very well and you will make sure to take advantage of them.
Events like conferences, fairs and forums allow you to keep up to date with the technologies and solutions offered by the competition; It allows you to meet professionals and attend talks where you can establish new relationships with both clients and collaborating companies; You will be able to observe the sector trends and anticipate the changes before your competition.
Even if you ever have the feeling that you were wrong about the selection and that such an event was not very profitable, don’t worry, just don’t repeat that selection. Focus on those you see as productive.
You establish your KPIs to assess the effectiveness of an event. These can be the number of contacts, the quantity and quality of new ideas, the presence of specific opportunities, the offers of collaboration. And what else could be in your sector?
Also Read: For Latest Products Reviews
Business Development Manager has to build long-term relationships, you must go with the professionalism ahead, do what you promise and do not promise what you cannot do. This does not mean being conservative, or not taking risks, but when you take a risk you have it controlled and weighed, knowing the tools and resources at your disposal.
Relationships are built by traveling to where clients are, in-person meetings are important especially in the beginning and don’t abuse teleconferences. Take advantage of social networks, especially professionals like LinkedIn and stay in touch with the professionals you appreciate. Mention them or send them an interesting article for them. Congratulate him on his accomplishments.
You can also be inspired by other professionals and influencers in your sector, you can take advantage of their experiences and adapt them to your sector.