So you have decided to employ a business developer to grow your business, that’s awesome! Now what do they do? Generating and securing new business is a very complicated task. It, in fact, is a department of its own within your property management business, and has many moving parts. Just employing a business developer won’t grow your business, they will need a framework to operate within and a way to measure success, such as weekly or monthly KPIs. Let’s break up the responsibilities of the business development department into its key components.
Lead nurturing involves driving leads into the agency database and communicating with them. The business developer is tasked with farming leads both from the sales team and from building a profile within the local community. They would also be responsible for developing a communication plan that nurtures these leads through to engagement, resulting in new business. KPI: New leads entered into the agency database
Marketing has some complexities to it. It involves identifying the agency market share, and competitor's weaknesses, to plan a campaign around this, in an effort to control market share. This may involve doing a SWOT analysis on your competitors and drafting marketing material directed at your competitors or private landlords, depending on the channel you are targeting. The business developer would then need to coordinate a strategic plan to convey this information to prospective new landlords. KPI: Frequency of communication to the agency database
Writing new business involves converting leads coming into the business, or from the agency database, into new managements. This may involve a regimented call campaign as part of the lead nurturing process and/or face to face presentation. Part of this process includes ensuring the business developer has developed a rock solid, listing presentation that the agency supports, and has been well trained and armed with an extensive array of selling tools. KPI: New managements into the business
Leasing the property is an extremely important part of the new business process. This is the first time that your new landlord has experienced your agency. Your agency is now on show to deliver what you, or your business developer, has promised to them. Your business developer should be ensuring the property is presentable for the market and professional photography has been organised. Speed is important with new business. Providing consistent feedback during the marketing phase, and ensuring days on market are kept to a minimum, are extremely important. KPI: Days on market
Agency integration is a relationship building exercise for the business developer. They should be tasked with making sure there is an open line of communication between the property management team and the sales team. They should be attending sales open homes, feilding investor enquiries, providing CMA’s to both, existing and potential new landlords and promoting internal referrals within the business.
We have conducted research demonstrating that doing all these tasks takes time. On average a business developer tasked with all these duties, can only write between 10-12 new managements a month. When setting the expectations of your business developer, ensure you have resourced them correctly. In the book ‘Building Blocks’ by Ben White, we promote an org chart for the business development team that splits the role into three key areas. Business development manager, business developer and leasing consultant. This structure would promote an increase in efficiency for the business developer. For example, employing and leasing consultants, to support the business developer, will allow them more time to focus on writing new business.