Business development encompasses any practice which increases long-term value creation for an organization from markets, relationships or customers – this could include anything from marketing strategies to pursuing potential leads for new businesses.
Companies seeking to engage in Business Development must conduct extensive research to understand current market trends and customer demands, along with conducting SWOT analyses and creating workable strategies.
1. Determine Your Unique Value Proposition
Business development strategies and plans focus on identifying new avenues of expansion within an organization, such as identifying target customer segments or markets for expansion, conducting market research, or devising unique selling points that increase income potential.
Business development strategies often include expanding product offerings through acquisitions or partnerships; businesses such as Facebook and Netflix have used this technique to establish themselves as leaders within their respective industries.
Business development involves more than just sales; all departments must work to align their goals with those of the overall vision for their organization. A CRM solution can come in handy here by helping departments communicate more easily between themselves while offering invaluable insight into sales metrics.
2. Determine Your Target Markets
Business development refers to the process of identifying and engaging potential new customers to grow your company. Usually this task falls to teams or individuals in your sales department who must understand your target market in order to create messages and tactics designed to convert these leads into paying customers.
Establishing your target market can be complex. One effective approach to start is with your existing customer base – examine their characteristics to identify any commonalities; for example if your product appeals to families as well as business owners prioritizing safety then this information could help define your target market.
Once you have identified a target market, it is crucial that your team stays up-to-date with consumer trends and needs. This will ensure they always use effective, productive approaches when outreaching to prospects.
3. Determine Your Sales Channels
As part of their business development plan, businesses must identify suitable sales channels as part of the development process. Sales channels serve to transfer ownership of products or services from businesses to consumers.
Some sales channels may be more effective than others, and it’s essential that you carefully consider their advantages and disadvantages, along with expected return on investment and conversion rates before selecting one as an outlet.
Keep in mind that different sales channels may incur fees or commissions that should be included in your budget. Furthermore, customer experience remains of utmost importance; creating an effortless multichannel customer journey can have a dramatic effect on brand perception and conversion rates; to do this effectively create a detailed customer profile.
4. Determine Your Marketing Channels
Marketing channels are the pathways through which businesses communicate and deliver products and services to customers. These may include both online channels such as email, search engine optimization (SEO) and social media; as well as traditional channels like radio ads, billboards or direct mail.
Attributes such as product type and customer demographic will ultimately dictate which marketing channels work best for your business development strategy. An auto mechanic might find that offering coupons via direct mail to potential clients within five miles can bring in new business.
Consider employing multiple marketing channels, as each can serve different functions in the customer buying journey. For example, display advertising can help expand brand recognition while affiliate marketing is useful at turning leads into customers.
5. Determine Your Financial Goals
No matter the state of your business, setting financial goals can help ensure its continued health and growth. Doing so allows you to concentrate your efforts in areas which will grow it and sustain it financially.
One of your financial goals may include investing 20%-30% of profits back into the business each year in order to increase its value and generate additional revenues.
Other financial development goals might include hiring more staff or expanding to a new location, which may be expensive but will allow your company to expand into new client accounts and experience growth. Establishing multiple income streams can also protect against one service going under and protects against financial risk should one fail.