What is a Business Development Executive (BDE)?
If you’ve ever found yourself wondering… “Is there really a difference between a BDE and a BDR?” We get it. There’s confusion and overlap between various sales titles used at different organizations. What’s more, titles are often changing and adapting to industry trends.
The fast-growing, competitive nature of the SaaS industry has created an environment where new titles are needed to accommodate for completely new positions. What’s more, (slightly) different titles – à la Sales Development Rep instead of Business Development Rep – are created to sound more relevant, modern, and in line with company values and culture.
If you’re new to all this sales jargon, look no further! We’ve got you covered. Keep reading to find out exactly what a business development executive does, average salary for BDEs, career outlook, and available BDE jobs.
In sales, the acronym BDE generally stands for Business Development Executive. BDEs work in outbound sales, reaching out to leads who are cold or that have been qualified by marketing, to move them closer to purchase.
What does a BDE do?
Business Development Executives (BDE) are pivotal players in outbound sales. Many companies and industries including tech, telecommunications, shipping and logistics, consumer packaged goods, and more employ BDEs to start the conversation with new leads, and encourage interest about the company’s products and services.
BDE job descriptions may also include prospecting cold leads – in other words, finding consumers that meet the company’s ideal customer profile, and contacting them via phone, email, and SMS.
Business development executives spend a lot of time on the phone: calling, texting, and emailing leads that marketing has qualified. Each marketing department has a different process for vetting top of funnel leads, but once they are sent to sales, BDEs are the first line of contact - following up with someone who has, for example, filled out a form on the website or downloaded a piece of marketing content.
Unlike the word “executive” suggests, BDE roles are generally entry-level or associate level positions. Some BDEs may take on direct reports and responsibilities similar to a manager level role, but they are generally not leading entire sales teams or departments.
The average base salary for Business Development Executives in the United States is $68,448 annually (source: Indeed). But remember, sales roles often come with an additional performance-based bonus, commonly up to $8,000 a year if sales KPIs are met.
BDE Career Outlook
With the abundance of automation, software, and marketing tools available on the market today, it may be worth wondering if sales positions will still be growing in a few years.
If you’re looking to start your career in the sales industry, don’t worry - as the market outlook for sales professionals is positive! The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects 4.5% growth for sales roles like Business Development Executive through 2030.
Open BDE Positions
Looking for available BDE jobs? Here are a few resources to help your search:
- Business Development Executive Jobs on LinkedIn
- Business Development Executive Jobs on Indeed
- Business Development Executive Jobs on Glassdoor
Which sales role is right for me?
The right sales role for you depends on your experience and expertise, but sales can be a good industry to get your start if you are entering the job market for the first time!
Some key characteristics of great sales and customer support professionals include:
- Excellent interpersonal skills
- Great communicators
- Passion for what they are selling
- Willingness to roll up their sleeves and get the job done
- No fear calling and following-up with potential clients
- Positive attitude
- Creative and passionate about helping others
- Ability to multi-task across different platforms and forms of communication
- Ability to work well under pressure and with a team
Does this sound like you? Kixie is hiring, and we’d love to hear from you! We are looking for jovial, hard-working colleagues to share our journey as we change the landscape of business telephony. Check out our open positions.