In any given agency, the role of the business development executive is an extreme position. With the short lifespan of these roles, the stress associated with them, and the blatant confusion surrounding the responsibilities of these roles, you’re in for a perfect storm of difficulties and struggles.
All those challenges notwithstanding, though – the job of the business development manager is one of the most critical in an agency. Without a successful development expert, it’s difficult or impossible for an agency to thrive.
In this post, we’re going to cover the role of a development manager, what they do, and why hiring one is an excellent idea for your team.
What Does a Business Development Manager do?
You know that business development managers are the foundation of any successful organization. What, exactly, do they do, though? Here are a few of their primary responsibilities:
- Identify new business opportunities. While the form of this responsibility depends on the company in question, a business development manager’s most essential role is to identify new potential partnerships, markets, and ways to reach customers. Once they’ve identified these opportunities, they’ll be expected to leverage them to bring in more revenue.
- Identify and track KPIs. Remember: the role of the development manager is primarily a sales role. As such, any good manager will be subject to both sales and KPI targets – both tracking and setting them.
- Team updates and unification. The business development manager serves a central purpose in the organization. They not only support the team and its goals, but they work to unify team members and build relationships both internally and externally.
Changing Sales Trends Requires Dedicated Business Development Professionals
Today, every company in the world is subject to evolving expectations and goals in some sense. In companies that sell products, goods, or services, the tides of sales trends are particularly applicable.
As it turns out, that’s also one of the primary functions of a business development manager. By stepping in to track and stay on top of changing sales trends, these keystone professionals keep companies agile and ready to pivot in the future.
More specifically, here are a few sales trends business development managers are adapting to currently.
1. The Rise of Generation Z Buyers
For years, Millennials were the focus market generation for many companies. Recently, however, Millennials have been surpassed by Generation Z. Gen Z’ers are people born between the mid-90s and the early 2000s. Currently, the oldest Gen Z’ers are in their early 20s, while the youngest are currently young teenagers.
Today, Gen Z’ers account for about $29-$143 billion in direct spending, and they’re on the way to becoming the most prominent consumer generation by 2020. Business development managers, while they play many parts, are responsible, in large part, for ensuring that a company’s marketing keeps up with changing customer trends and continues to support evolving generational dynamics.
2. More Strategic Approaches to Sales Enablement
Every team works with sales enablement to some level — whether it’s the tech solutions they use, or the training sessions meant to launch people into the sales environment. Business development managers, then, work to enhance sales in the following ways:
- Development of actual strategies and plans with clear objectives and steps
- Increased focus on helping sales staff develop their skills and become more efficient
- Creating more natural ways to onboard new sales staff and help people understand the dynamics of a sales role
- Implementing and focusing on new technology that aids the sales enablement process
3. Implementing New Technology
New technologies like machine learning, deep learning, and AI are sweeping workforces everywhere. The job of a business development manager, in part, is to track and implement new technologies that may benefit a company. The more a company can leverage applicable technologies, the more effective it will be at keeping up with competitors and boosting productivity
3 Ways Business Development Managers Improve Relationships
This role will vary from company to company, but the best managers help improve a company’s relationships in the following ways:
1. More Personalized Communications
Today, customers want personalized communications with companies. Brands that don’t deliver this are out in the cold, as far as acquisition goes — plain and simple. Fortunately, about 98% of marketers agree that personalization advances client relationships and improves corporate culture. By identifying opportunities for customization and developing approaches to execute, business development managers help a company strengthen its relationships.
2. Focus on Clients
Today, clients have more buying options than ever before. This means they’re not married to a company they hate, and that they have no reason to do business with brands that don’t put them first. Business development managers, then, step in to place a company’s focus on its clients, and to ensure that everything the brand does is client-centric.
3. Encourage Digital Transformation
The digital revolution is here, and modern business development managers must step up to deploy, implement, and guide said transformation. From understanding user data to implementing useful tech like AI, development managers can automate mundane activities and free up teams for more effective, productive workdays.
Should You Hire a Business Development Manager?
The decision of whether to hire a business development manager is not exclusive to professional and consulting services. In fact, development managers can work with many different brands and agencies, specifically those looking to attract new business, improve a working environment, or up the level of seniority to engage a market.
If the stars align on these topics, hiring a business development manager can be an excellent idea and may help your band thrive – both now in the future.
Does your brand need help building your brand? Contact InThink today to learn more about our strategies, our processes, and more.