Business Development – Sales or Marketing?
Business Development: Sales or Marketing?
By Karin Schwartz
Founder & CEO of Affiliate business Schwartz Associates, LLC
What is the definition of business development? Do you know?
Business development is a quasi sale and marketing role. You build relationships necessary to do business and the process by which you identify, meet and communicate with the prospect that ultimately makes them become a client. From a marketing perspective it is more about exposing the brand, than creating it. Whether it is networking, social media, speaking engagements, or posting articles what are you doing to help your brand, your message reach more people? Women in business need to be conscious of what they are doing to ensure that people know who they are, what they do and how they can make those business and potential client relationships even better. It is essential to understand this to successfully drive sales successfully. Essentially – what are you doing to successfully DEVELOP your business? Are you unsure – the following questions may help you figure it out:
• Regardless of what it has been in the past, what are and should be my target markets?
• Who are and should be my best referral partners and why?
• Where do I find these people?
• What am I doing to get my name out there? What venues, what means?
• Why would they want to meet with me? What makes differentiates my business, my services, me?
• Be honest with yourself, is what you’re doing working?
From a sales perspective it’s about prospecting, communicating and closing deals however a deal closed is based on a relationship and not just pricing. How you find these prospects is key. Cold calling is extremely difficult these days as technology and gate keepers have become more savvy and direct mail has a low success rate so what is left that works?…Relationships.
Once you’ve secured the appointment, ask yourself these questions:
• How can I be of value to the person I’m meeting?
• Am I dealing with the decision maker and can they make a decision? Make no mistake it’s not the same thing
• Do they have an immediate need or am I making a connection in hopes of doing business at a later date, or developing a source for referrals?
• Do they have a budget?
• Is this really a prospect, or just a contact? (Both have their place – but need to be managed accordingly.)
Relationships are what helps to build and strengthen your brand; not to mention create business growth in the immediate and future. Key relationships refer you, endorse you, praise you and support you. In today’s high tech high speed environment, it is still all about who you know, at times as much if not more than what you know. Remember your client relationships, and your referral partners – both play a role in how successful you will be.
Let’s face it, in today’s economy it has to be about results. Measuring results in business development isn’t just about today’s sales it’s about the relationships created that lead to tomorrow’s sales.
If you are interested in learning more about Sales and Business development NAWBO BRC is hosting an informative Lunch and Learn session for members on September 14, 2010 – Hosted by MyCity4Her.com at the Canton Can Company on Boston Street. For more information click here.