How to grow my online business using business development skills

How to grow my online business using business development skills

SO, what is Business Development, and why should entrepreneurs care about it?


In this article we will be looking at understanding what business development is, and why entrepreneurs and business owners should know about it. We will explore what business development actually means, what tasks are considered ‘business development’ and how it fits into an overall business strategy. 

What is Business Development?

Business Development is a term used in the corporate space to define activities which help the business make more money. In actual fact it can often take 6 months or longer in a ‘corporate BD’ job to start seeing real traction in business development. The reason for this is because many of the activities of a ‘BD Executive’ are built on cold outreach and require relationship building and nurturing over time. 


Business Development has been around forever(ish) and it’s handy for online entrepreneurs, solopreneurs, agencies and coaches all to know what this is and why it’s important to them and their own business building strategies. 


What does a Business Development Executive do?


It’s useful to know what a typical corporate business development job description looks like, I know this all too well as I have BEEN a ‘BD’ and also recruited BD Exec's, so I can confidently share what this looks like with you in simple terms. 

It can be confusing from company to company and with lot’s of corporate terms and phrases that overcomplicate it, so I’m going to strip back what the job description states, to what it actually means so you can see how it translates and becomes incredibly relevant to the online space for entrepreneurs:

Typical Business Development Activity:


  • Finding relevant events. (sourcing new business avenues), Going to the events and finding people to talk to and create relationships to discuss potential opportunities to work together or win them as a client (networking) 


  • Using LinkedIn to find people within the industry to connect with and get meetings with. (stalking people and companies on linkedin so you can find out more about what they do and who is best to network with.)


  • Developing New Business and Winning New Partnerships. Basically emailing, calling, linkedin messaging or otherwise connecting with important people who might be able to help with referrals, winning new business, co-promoting or have access to lot’s of people who happen to be your target audience.


  • Delivering proposals to Directors, CEO’s and Company Owners. After finding them, creating relationships and winning them over on a friendly basis - getting down to business and working out how to make the partnerships or campaign actually work so that it benefits the business and makes money so everyone is happy - and then getting everyone to agree to it all on paper


  • Closing. Now this may speak for itself, but it looks different for different businesses or roles, but essentially it all comes down to making sure things actually go ahead) Sometimes this happens on a call, other times it’s out to lunch or dinner, but partnerships are normally built on relationships and whether or not a company sees value in you and what you are offering, but also that they actually like you and therefore want to do business with your company. 



  • Relationship Management when people start referring new business because of a new partnership, typically the ‘BD’ will be responsible for making sure that new business is well looked after and the end customer has a brilliant experience. If that doesn't happen, then the BD get’s a telling off from the new partner, the customer has a bad experience and both companies look bad. So that’s a lose lose situation. (make sure everything runs swimmingly, no one forgets about the partnerships, educate teams and staff who need to know about the partnership sand how it all works, help the partner promote the company so it all actually works.


As you can see, when a lot of the jargon is taken out - a lot of this is entirely relevant to online entrepreneurs, business owners and coaches. People get paid well in this role because if you can successfully find and develop a new partnership or grow a part of the business that ends up making the company lots more money - you are suddenly worth a lot to that company. 


Why is this helpful to know?


Well, if your business is making money but you are looking for ways to grow, then there are business development activities you can start to do yourself. Or you can work with someone in sales who can help you bring these types of activities to life.  You don’t need to be in the corporate arena to use these strategies in your own business. 

If you need help growing your business you can learn more from the blog, get more leads with Facebook Messenger, or Apply for Business Coaching and consulting with me HERE.


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