What is business development

What is Business Development?

Just What is Business Development?

Business development is just a flavor of sales.

Business development is strategic.

Business development is all about relationships.

I’ve heard them all, and if you ask twenty different professionals, you will get 20 different answers to the question.  Different organizations define and operate business development differently, and assign varying responsibilities and goals.  But what is the overarching theme?

Here is how I define business development:

Business development is the use of a broad strategy to drive business growth through customers, partnerships, and new markets.

So let’s examine each of these target areas, and I’ll give you examples to solidify understanding,

Business Development and Customers

The lowest hanging fruit when looking for new revenue opportunities is almost always customers.  If you listen to them, they will typically tell you how to enhance your product set or offerings, and even help define new opportunities.  Maybe your software is missing a key component that will make their lives easier, or perhaps there is a complimentary product that would easy to offer.

Business Development and Partnerships

Business partners come in a variety of flavors: resellers, distributors, OEMs, technology, etc.  Discussing each type and their pros/cons is beyond the scope of this article, but the key here is to identify key partners that are willing to work with you, and enhance your offering through an additional product or service.

Business Development and Markets

Identifying and opening new markets is a key BD function.  As an example, maybe Healthcare is identified as a new target.  BD personnel work with marketing and the product teams to define an initial strategy to penetrate the market through a value proposition and highlighted features that bring value.

More to come in future articles.



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