Creating your own startup business can be a remarkably rewarding adventure – and certainly a profitable one, if you play your cards right. Yet, according to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, roughly 20% of new businesses fail within their first year. Despite the challenges and battles that come with starting a new startup business, focusing on business development, especially in the early stages, is paramount – not just marketing and customer acquisition.
What Are The Steps Of Business Development For Startups?
Business development is a broad term that encompasses the process of creating strategies and plans to help your startup achieve its goals by identifying new markets, building partnerships, and creating relationships with potential customers. In essence, it’s the roadmap your business will follow as you grow and expand – and the plan to get you there.
If you haven’t already, the first step is conducting thorough research on the market, industry, competitors, and trends to make the best informed roadmap possible. Understanding that information can help you maximize your brand’s impact in the market and help your flush out your plan with ease. Next, you need to develop a marketing strategy to reach that target audience.
Building relationships with potential customers, partners, and investors is all part of the process which can be achieved by attending industry events, participating in online communities, and networking. Finally, track your plan progress by comparing your growth against the KPIs you initially established when developing your business development plan.
Why Is It Essential To Incorporate Business Development For Startups?
Investing in business development is one of the most empirically and historically proven ways to build a lasting brand. In a 2022 survey by HubSpot, 80% of businesses that invested in business development reported an increase in revenue. But, the benefits go much further than your businesses bottom line.
Business development helps you identify new opportunities, reach new customers, and build relationships with potential customers, partners, and investors. By understanding your market and target audience, you can develop products and services that meet their needs, and create a marketing strategy that resonates with them. Building relationships with key stakeholders in your industry is crucial, as they can provide valuable insights, introductions, and opportunities for collaboration. Ultimately, business development enables you to create a roadmap for growth and success that guides your startup towards achieving its goals.
What Can Startup Founders Do to Ensure the Success of their Business Development Plan?
While business development planning can be intimidating, there are a number of things that founders can do to ensure the success of their plan as it comes to fruition:
- Set Clear Goals: Startup founders should set clear and measurable goals for their business development plan. This will help them track progress and make adjustments as needed to achieve their desired outcomes.
- Focus on Building Relationships: Building relationships with potential customers, partners, and investors is essential to business development. Founders should prioritize attending industry events, participating in online communities, and networking to build these relationships.
- Conduct Ongoing Market Research: Startup founders should conduct ongoing market research to stay up-to-date on industry trends, competitors, and customer needs. This will help them make informed decisions about their product or service offerings and adjust their business development plan accordingly.
- Stay Flexible: Startup founders should stay flexible and willing to make adjustments to their business development plan as needed. This may include pivoting their product or service offerings or adjusting their marketing strategy based on market feedback.
- Measure Key Performance Indicators: Measuring key performance indicators (KPIs) is essential to track progress and identify areas for improvement. Founders should identify the KPIs that are most relevant to their business development plan and regularly measure and analyze them.
By taking these steps, startup founders can ensure the success of their business development plan and create a roadmap for growth and success that guides their journey towards achieving their goals. Need a guiding hand as you establish your startup’s business development plan? Reach out to Double Iron Consulting today to learn more.