Jobs: New Business Development

What exactly does new business development entail? We take a look in detail at jobs and careers in new business development, meet experts in the field through interviews and profiles, and feature new business development jobs in the advertising and marketing industry.

The Art of New Business

By Mark Tungate 

The metier of bringing new clients into the agency (and keeping them) has changed. In our new series of job profiles, we take a look at business development. 

“In the old days,” says Ulrich Proeschel, VP business development Europe at TBWA, “the business development person was the guy with the Rolodex. The one with the right phone numbers.”

In other words he – or potentially “she”, but we’re back in the Mad Men era here – was hired for his contacts. He was a schmoozer, a winer and diner, who practically charmed accounts into the agency.

“He was working in isolation, and he ran the show,” says Ulrich. “But now, as with most aspects of our business, things have changed dramatically, and it’s all about collaboration.”

Ulrich believes there are two types of business development person. “One of these characters will jump on a pitch and lead the process, and they literally create the feeling that they win the business. I see myself in another way: as a coach, a person who enables a team to win the business. Because if I don’t make it feel as if the team has won the business, with me as a neutral enabler, there’s a chance the relationship will break down when I move on.”

 

CASTING


Others in the business development role agree that it’s changed. Jemima Monies, head of new business and PR at Adam&EveDDB in London, says: “It’s considerably more complicated and pressured, with fewer traditional new business opportunities coming into the market and lots more agencies on the scene. Not to mention the rise of procurement and a drastically different media landscape.”

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