Career Development

What Does a Business Development Manager Do?

Find out what a business development manager does, how to get this job, and what it takes to succeed as a business development manager.

Business development managers are responsible for growing the business of their organization. They do this by identifying new opportunities, creating plans to capitalize on those opportunities, and executing those plans effectively.

Business development managers may work with a variety of different teams within their company, including marketing, sales, customer service, etc. Their job is to coordinate efforts across these teams in order to identify new ways to grow the business.

Business Development Manager Job Duties

A business development manager typically has a wide range of responsibilities, which can include:

  • Selling products or services directly to clients or identifying new clients to whom they can sell products or services
  • Working with other members of the team to develop business plans or marketing strategies to help increase sales
  • Developing and managing effective relationships with current clients in order to increase repeat business and referrals
  • Researching potential markets for new products or services that meet the needs of potential clients
  • Conducting market research to identify potential clients in an industry or sector who might need products or services that the company can provide
  • Preparing reports about sales activities and results, which may be presented at meetings with senior management
  • Meeting regularly with clients to discuss progress on projects or to obtain feedback on new products or services that have been developed
  • Maintaining a list of potential clients who could benefit from the company’s services or products
  • Identifying new business opportunities, such as new markets or products or services that the company could offer

Business Development Manager Salary & Outlook

Business development managers’ salaries vary depending on their level of education, years of experience, and the size and industry of the company. They may also earn additional compensation in the form of commissions and bonuses.

  • Median Annual Salary: $76,500 ($36.78/hour)
  • Top 10% Annual Salary: $145,000 ($69.71/hour)

The employment of business development managers is expected to grow faster than average over the next decade.

Demand for these workers is expected to increase as firms seek to expand their geographic reach and introduce new products and services. Business development managers will be needed to help companies find new markets and customers.

Related: 25 Business Development Manager Interview Questions and Answers

Business Development Manager Job Requirements

A business development manager typically needs the following qualifications:

Education: Business development managers are typically required to have a bachelor’s degree in marketing, business or a related field. Some employers prefer candidates who have a master’s degree in business administration (MBA). An MBA is typically preferred for senior business development manager positions.

Training & Experience: Business development managers typically receive on-the-job training in the form of an orientation period with a company. This training period allows the business development manager to learn about the company’s products and services, the target market, the competition and the current marketing strategies. The business development manager will also learn about the company’s goals and objectives, and they will learn about the company’s current marketing strategies.

Business development managers can also receive training through internships and entry-level positions. During an internship, the business development manager will learn about the industry and the company’s products and services. They will also learn about the company’s marketing strategies and how to generate leads.

Certifications & Licenses: Professional certifications can validate a professional’s qualifications to current and future employers. Business development managers can earn certifications to gain more practical knowledge of their daily responsibilities, test their professional skills and further advance their career.

Business Development Manager Skills

Business development managers need the following skills in order to be successful:

Communication: Communication is the act of conveying information through a medium. Business development managers use communication skills to interact with clients, colleagues and other stakeholders. Effective communication can help you build trust, inspire action and encourage collaboration.

Relationship building: Relationship building is the ability to form and maintain positive relationships with others. Business development managers use this skill to build relationships with potential clients and other business professionals. This can include attending networking events, making phone calls and sending emails to potential clients.

Strategic thinking: Business development managers use strategic thinking to develop plans for increasing sales and revenue. This involves forecasting market trends, identifying potential opportunities and developing actionable strategies to meet organizational goals. Strategic thinking also involves thinking about the long-term goals of the organization and how to best achieve them.

Negotiation: Business development managers often negotiate contracts with clients and suppliers. They may also negotiate salaries and other benefits for employees. Negotiation involves compromise, so it’s important to be able to give and take.

Marketing: Business development managers often work with marketing teams to develop strategies and tactics for attracting new clients. They may also work with sales teams to develop strategies for converting leads into paying customers. Effective business development managers have a thorough understanding of marketing strategies and tactics, including SEO, paid advertising, social media and email marketing.

Business Development Manager Work Environment

Business development managers work in a variety of settings, including offices, factories, and retail establishments. They may travel frequently to meet with clients or attend conferences. They typically work long hours, including evenings and weekends. They may also travel internationally.

Business Development Manager Trends

Here are three trends influencing how business development managers work. Business development managers will need to stay up-to-date on these developments to keep their skills relevant and maintain a competitive advantage in the workplace.

The Need for a More Strategic Approach to Business Development

The role of the business development manager is evolving. In order to be successful, they need to take a more strategic approach to their work and focus on long-term growth rather than short-term wins.

This means that business development managers will need to develop new skills, such as marketing and sales, in order to be successful. They will also need to be able to identify opportunities and create plans for how to capitalize on them.

More Focus on Digital Marketing

As businesses continue to shift towards digital marketing, the need for professionals who can manage this type of advertising will increase.

Business development managers who are skilled in digital marketing will be in high demand, as they will be able to help businesses reach new customers through online channels. This includes social media platforms, search engines, and other websites where people go to find products and services.

A Greater Emphasis on Customer Experience

Customer experience has become an increasingly important factor in determining the success of a business. As a result, business development managers need to focus on creating positive customer experiences by understanding what they want and meeting their needs.

In order to do this, business development managers need to be familiar with customer research techniques and tools, as well as have strong communication and negotiation skills. They also need to be able to understand the importance of customer feedback and use it to improve the overall customer experience.

How to Become a Business Development Manager

A business development manager can have a rewarding career in many different industries. They need to be able to see the big picture and understand how their company fits into the larger market. They also need to be able to connect with people at all levels of an organization, from executives to entry-level employees.

To become a successful business development manager, you need to be able to think creatively about new ways to generate revenue for your company. You also need to be able to work well under pressure and meet deadlines. And finally, you need to be able to communicate effectively both verbally and in writing.

Advancement Prospects

The best way to advance in this career is to get more experience. Business development managers with several years of experience can move up to senior positions, such as director of business development or vice president of business development. Those with even more experience can become chief executive officers or partners in their firms.

Business development managers can also advance by getting more education. A master’s degree in business administration or a related field can lead to higher-level positions.

Business Development Manager Job Description Example

The Business Development Manager (BDM) is responsible for developing and executing a business development strategy to increase company revenue. The BDM will identify and pursue new business opportunities, build relationships with potential partners, and negotiate and close deals. The ideal candidate will have experience in business development, sales, or a related field, and be able to think strategically and creatively to identify new business opportunities. They will also be an excellent communicator and negotiator, with the ability to build relationships and close deals.

Duties & Responsibilities

  • Develop and execute business development plans to identify and pursue new sales opportunities
  • Research and build relationships with potential customers, partners, and investors
  • Negotiate and close deals that contribute to the company’s growth
  • Create and deliver presentations to internal and external stakeholders
  • Attend industry events and networking functions to generate leads and business opportunities
  • Stay up-to-date on industry trends and news to identify potential areas of opportunity
  • Collaborate with cross-functional teams to develop go-to-market strategies
  • Support the creation of marketing collateral such as website content, case studies, blog posts, and whitepapers
  • Help manage and grow existing customer relationships
  • Maintain accurate records of all sales activities in CRM software
  • Generate monthly reports on sales pipeline activity and progress against targets
  • Assist with the development and implementation of business development policies and procedures

Required Skills and Qualifications

  • Proven experience as business development manager or relevant role
  • Experience developing and executing sales strategies
  • Excellent communication, negotiation, and presentation skills
  • Strong organizational and time-management skills
  • Outstanding analytical and problem-solving abilities
  • Creativity and commercial awareness

Preferred Skills and Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree in business administration, marketing, or related field
  • MBA or other relevant master’s degree
  • Experience working in a consultative sales environment
  • Knowledge of CRM software and MS Office
  • Familiarity with market research, target markets, and industry trends


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