I’d like to talk to you about the steps involved in developing a business development plan.
It starts with defining your target audience. If you’re trying to market to everyone, you’re not actually marketing to anyone. So spreading yourself too thin is the first mistake and a thing to avoid. So start with a definition of your target audience. And that can include not only your target clients, the decision-makers, but also influencers and referral sources.
The second step is to do your research. Understand what you know about your target audience internally and also do some external research. Many firms find it’s useful to have someone other than themselves asking the question of the clients. But whatever way you do it, do the best job you can of understanding what’s driving your clients’ business development decisions, how do they know when it’s time to use a vendor and which one to select?
The third step is determining your competitive advantage. What’s the value that you give to clients that they can’t get from other kinds of professional service providers? What are the things that you do differently? Those can be things you discover about yourself or decisions you make to position yourself differently.
Which brings us to our fourth one, which is choosing your business development strategy. What is your strategy? Are you gonna position yourself as an expert and look for inbound leads and referrals, or are you going to go out and try to approach people directly with an outbound strategy? Making this distinction will help you organize the rest of it.
And that gets us to our fifth and final step, that’s choosing your business development tactics, what are the actual ways you’ll do that? For example, let’s say you have a expertise strategy, you’re gonna try and make your expertise more visible. Which are the right tactics that work for you? Is it public speaking? And is it webinars or seminars? Figuring out what those steps are in this order will help you get to a business development plan that can really help drive the growth of your firm.
If you wanna learn more about this and dive deeper, we suggest you explore around Hinge University. There’s a wide variety of courses and shortcuts that can help you develop a business strategy that’s suited to your market and to your firm.
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