Under the direction of and in partnership with the President / CEO, the Director, Business Development is responsible for delivering outstanding business results that meet or exceed the annual plan. They will accomplish this by building mutually beneficial relationships with internal team members, vendors and supplier partner organizations in and outside of the association industry. Specifically, the Director is responsible for the organization’s annual marketing plan utilizing print, online advertising and exhibit sales to drive revenue from sponsorship sales, advertising, membership and high-profile events. The Driector, Business Development will interact with the Association Forum Board of Directors, committee and working group members, other volunteer leaders, and members at large.
Leadership and Strategic Involvement
Develop, secure approval and deliver or exceed the annual revenue plan for the organization.
Player / Coach, leading the Business Development and Marketing teams. Conduct performance reviews of staff.
Motivate, mentor and be a strong professional role model.
Serve as a key member of the Association Forum Leadership team, interacting regularly with all stakeholders to identify and secure new sales opportunities.
Develop and implement strategic sales and marketing plans and forecasts in support of organizational strategies and objectives.
Direct implementation and execution of sales and marketing policies and practices.
Collaborate with Finance to establish budget and forecast. Manage sales operating budget.
Direct sales forecasting activities and set performance goals accordingly.
Develop and manage sales team capable of carrying out sales initiatives.
Analyze and evaluate the effectiveness of sales, methods, costs, and results.
Maintain industry and competitor awareness and understand service markets. Monitor industry activity to identify trends and competitor sales and marketing activities.
Oversee marketing strategy and adjust to meet changing market and competitive conditions.
Recommend sales strategies for improvement based on research and competitor analyses.
Develop and recommend positioning and pricing strategy to produce the highest possible revenue growth.
Design packages to build partnership relationships. Manage partnership programs.
Represent Association Forum at networking events, conferences, meetings, trade shows and/or business to business exchange events.
Set advertising sales revenue goals (annually and by issue) for FORUM magazine, online Buyer’s Guide, Holiday Showcase Program Guide, This Week e-newsletter, online buyer’s guide upgrade sales, and banner advertising on the Association Forum website.
Accountable to the President & CEO for meeting and exceeding revenue goals.
Ensure team members achieve or exceed their revenue targets.
Oversee the relationship with the advertising sales partners through regular communications to ensure that sales efforts are aligned with Association Forum's mission and strategic goals and initiatives.
Responsible for meeting and exceeding revenue goals for each program.
Identify and secure current and new opportunities for sponsorship.
Create integrated sales efforts / packages that increase total revenues.
Establish and cultivate a database of qualified sales prospects both in and outside of the association industry.
Provide monthly sales and pipeline reports to the President & CEO and the Director of Finance.
Oversee finalization of sponsor contracts and fulfilment with support from team members.
Oversee and negotiate and execute all in-kind trade agreements with Association Forum service providers requesting advertising, exhibit space and/or sponsor recognition.
Create and distribute fulfillment reports that demonstrate the key components and deliverables of the program in order to document the sponsor’s ROI.
Collaborate with the Marketing team to create promotional copy for print and electronic promotional materials.
The successful candidate will demonstrate skills aptitude, as well as cultural alignment as follows:
Superior written and verbal communication skills; excellent persuasive communication skills
Genuine team enthusiasm and positive energy
Collaborative, can-do approach to problem solving
Ability to meet deadlines
Superior project management skills
Acute attention to detail
Fosters a team culture that rewards and celebrates Forum values
Familiarity with CRM platforms
MS Office Tools (Word, Excel, PowerPoint).
Ability to effectively manage time, prioritize work, multi-task across many assignments.
10+ years’ experience in sales and marketing in association industry; sales management preferred
Three to five years of marketing, communications and association management experience, preferably in membership marketing.
About Association Forum
Association Forum is a 501 (c)(6) organization, considered the “association of associations” for more than 1,500 businesses, charitable, civic and professional organizations headquartered in the Chicagoland area. The Association Forum’s 4,000+ members are the CEOs and staff professionals of national, state and nonprofit organizations, plus vendors of good and services to these businesses. The Association Forum provides essential learning, compelling experiences and powerful resources that advance the professional practice of association management.