Position spotlight: Junior Business Development Manager
Romkje Beck, Madeleine Lidjan, and Joana Pires recently joined our Business Development team in the role of Junior Business Development Manager. With each of them tackling a new market, they use their strong communication skills and big-picture thinking to help affiliate partners and GetYourGuide achieve success. Learn more about the role in today’s position spotlight.
Could you please introduce yourself?
Madeleine: I’m originally from Stockholm. I joined GetYourGuide 3 months ago to work as a Junior Business Development Manager for the Nordics.
Romkje: I am a Junior Business Development Manager for the Dutch and Belgian market. Madeleine and I actually started on the same day, so I’ve also just reached the 3-month mark.
Joana: The team has really expanded this quarter! I joined the Business Development team as a Junior Business Development Manager about a month ago. I’m originally from Portugal, and I’m responsible for the Portuguese-speaking markets.
Can you give us a brief summary of what your job entails?
Romkje: As Business Development Managers, we reach out and create relationships with bloggers and travel guides to create performance-based affiliate marketing channels. Travel guides and bloggers write about GetYourGuide’s tours and activities, providing deep links or widgets in their content, aiming to convert their readers into GetYourGuide customers. The more conversions, the higher the commission. We are responsible for the complete acquisition funnel of our affiliate partners, from prospecting online to ringing the bell once we’ve closed a deal.
We three were hired to approach and develop new markets for GetYourGuide, which is particularly fun because we get to own the growth in this market.
What does an average day in your role look like?
Madeleine: On a day-to-day basis, we spend part of our time hunting down viable online publishers through prospecting. Then, once we’ve found a prospect, we contact them, make a pitch, negotiate, and eventually close the deal, bringing them on as partners. A lot of our time is spent communicating via email, on the phone, or through a video conference.
Joana: Aside from hunting down new partners, we are also involved in the growth of existing partners. We each manage several key accounts and, working together with the partner, we analyze their performance and come up with strategies on how they can optimize conversions.
Romkje: We also work closely with the other parts of the BD department: Partner Tech and Partner Success. The Partner Success team is responsible for everything after a partner signs up with us. Partner Tech handles the various technical tasks and back-end development needed for some partners. We have several meetings with them on a weekly basis where we talk about the latest team developments and how to further improve the partner experience.
What advice would you have for someone who wants to work as a Business Development Manager?
Madeleine: Communication is key to becoming a successful Business Development Manager. A great guiding principle for being a great communicator is to be clear, concise, and compelling. It’s also important to stay curious and corroborate change. A lot of our work involves constantly evaluating what we can do differently in order to improve our workflow, so being able to drive initiatives that improve overall effectiveness and cure chaos is key.
Romkje: My advice is to keep your eye on the big picture. Not every week will be as successful as the last. If you receive a no from a potential partner, instead of feeling defeated, try to understand their perspective and reasoning. Then, come up with tailored ideas for blogs and guides to increase their revenue and demonstrate the benefits of affiliate marketing.
What working principles does your team live by?
Joana: Our working principles are a reflection of the GetYourGuide values as a whole. As a team, we work towards common goals guided by harmony, positivity, and strong cooperation. We are all involved in the decision-making process and have space to take ownership, be creative and proactive, and speak openly and transparently.
Madeleine: Agreed! Aside from that, I would also like to highlight our team spirit — we have a lot of fun together. And, by staying close, we can celebrate the success that comes from teamwork and our shared growth.
What is the most challenging aspect of your role?
Joana: We in charge of driving revenue for an important segment of GetYourGuide’s business, which puts a lot of responsibility on our shoulders. In order to meet business targets, we must be ready to handle uncertainty and unpredictability. Sometimes deals can take time to close because a travel blogger might be quite busy doing what they love most — traveling.
Romkje: Our job is similar to a sales function in that it has a lot of targets. This can be challenging because the targets are ambitious and take a lot of hard work to reach.
What is the most rewarding aspect of your role?
Madeleine: It’s great to see the collective power of smaller online publishers driving concrete business growth - both for themselves and for GetYourGuide. The partnerships we facilitate are mutually beneficial, and it’s very rewarding to see how my work allows bloggers to grow their businesses all while providing readers with incredible experiences. Also, since our positions are new, our markets are practically blank canvases. This gives us the unique opportunity to build something from scratch. It also means growth in the new markets can be traced back to us, which is very rewarding.
Joana: I completely agree. It is absolutely rewarding to be the face of GetYourGuide when building trusting and long-lasting relationships. One of the best components of working with affiliate partners is the opportunity to create a mutually beneficial relationship, as Madeleine said. We are the bridge builders for every partnership. We help our online publishers achieve the success they deserve. What could be more fulfilling?
Romkje: And, every time we have a sign-up, we can ring the bell. That’s the most rewarding and fun moment of the day.
Why is now a good time to join the BD team?
Romkje: Now is a good time since there are a lot of opportunities to take initiative, work on new projects, and shape the role. Since we are working with new markets, we can really build and work together to establish a good process. Furthermore, there are some cool learnings from more developed markets we can apply to our own.
Joana: Now is actually the perfect moment to be part of our team since we are building up these new markets from scratch. As we grow together, we also grow a lot individually. This is an unparalleled opportunity to learn from the fantastic work that has been done so far and to bring new perspectives to the table.
Madeleine: It’s also a great time to join GetYourGuide more generally. We are in a strong growth phase and Business Development is an important channel for perpetuating this growth and solidifying GetYourGuide’s presence globally. We certainly love where we’re going.