Business Development Is Not Sales

What’s the difference between sales and business development?

Andrew Dumont does an amazing job breaking down these roles and also deconstructs this misconception in a visual that I really like.

This is a great start, however when it comes to biz dev, what I’ve often seen is that the fundamentals of this role comes down to doing 2 things:

  1. Getting someone to give up something
  2. Getting someone to get something new

I would argue that today, most prospects or partners already have a version of what you are trying to sell them. So getting someone to give up something, in exchange for what you’re offering may be a more common scenario in today’s economic landscape.

So how can you get someone to give up something they already have and start using what you’re offering? You need to move them. Not sell. These are slightly different traits that may exist in sales but will most likely be more predominant, or effective in biz dev. Check out the expanded diagram below for more why not look here.

We’re currently moving away from a world where information asymmetry was king and moving towards a new paradigm called information parity. The result is a level playing field where persuading, convincing and influencing takes precedence over selling. We still have a need for sales, which are products/services people are sold that typically follow a flow of dials, demos and dollars.

However since buyers now come to the table more informed than ever before, we need to create products/services for people to buy, which is more of a marketing exercise that includes content, connecting and communication

On the moving scale we have “Super Movers” and “Movers” which represent the different skills or styles associated with these movers.

If you’re interested in learning more, Daniel Pink has conducted a study with 9057 respondents world-wide called, “What Do You Do At Work” which helps illustrate the importance moving along with new rules that govern caveat venditor.

In the meantime, if you’re a biz dev hustler today, I’m curious to know:  How are you moving your prospects?

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