Become a Resource for Your Clients
Professionals in the mortgage industry are constantly swimming through a slew of setbacks relating to loan products, interest rates, and the ins and outs of murky regulations. Mortgages can be confusing for consumers, and in an economy that seems determined to prevent a quick rebound from the housing crisis, bankers and brokers must explore new avenues to increase — or, at the very least, maintain — their business and production levels. In this respect, turning to marketing and testing new ways to increase your visibility in the industry is an absolute necessity.
What should originators be trying to accomplish when they market? Brand recognition. Product awareness. An accomplished name in the industry. There are countless resources claiming to hold the secret of effective marketing, and yet many brokers and bankers still struggle with this aspect of the business. Some professionals come up with all-too-common excuses: Marketing is time-consuming, difficult to manage, expensive and impossible to track. Let’s put these misconceptions aside, however, and take a step back.
Be a reliable resource
The previously mentioned goals are certainly admirable and will bring business your way, but what consumers really want is a reliable resource. Reliable resources provide consumers with more than just an advertisement telling them what they should be doing with their money. They want a place to find answers, information and advice on the subjects that they’re researching.
Becoming an invaluable, informative resource does not happen overnight. It takes time — and a lot of patience — to build up both a following and the requisite content to be deemed relevant and trustworthy. Consider the types of concerns and confusions your clientele tend to need answers for, and make that information readily available.
In a world saturated with tools and information, beginning to determine how to stand out from the crowd may be intimidating. Start by researching where your audience is most active and make sure that you have a presence in those spaces. Whether this space is social media, blogs or the 5 o’clock news, find a way to professionally frequent these platforms and continuously deliver relevant, timely and helpful information.
In all cases, be sure to deliver content in ways that are appropriate for the given medium. The more engaging the way a message is conveyed, the better.
Consider the appeal, for instance, of information presented in an interactive manner. Homebuyers and other industry professionals do not always have the time to read lengthy articles or review confusing analytics. By taking information distributed in the industry and breaking it down into more manageable pieces to be consumed in shorter intervals, you can establish your voice in the crowd as one that hits the message in a concise and effective manner.
Mortgages are not an easy item to sell. Originators cannot boast about weekend specials or discounted holiday rates. Brokers and bankers are ultimately convincing homebuyers to purchase their own debt, but this does not need to be the focus of your marketing.
Instead, as an industry expert, it’s your responsibility to guide the conversation and educate potential homebuyers on the positive aspects of the housing market and the options available to them. Originators today have the unique opportunity to alter the negative reputation and image of the market simply through education and transparency, and your marketing materials should incorporate these efforts.
Marketing also encompasses an impressive library of regulations and laws that must be followed. It’s imperative to keep up-to-date on these guidelines and ensure that you’re compliant in materials being pushed to consumers.
Although the list of rules may cause people to turn and run in the opposite direction in order to avoid what appears to be a headache, marketing is an undeniably valuable business tool that cannot be overlooked. It involves much more than traditional advertisements and sales pitches, and is instead all about the conversation and engagement with consumers — the human aspect of the business world.
Regardless, compliance should always be at the top of your mind in every marketing initiative you pursue, from traditional marketing efforts to more sophisticated online campaigns.
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Today, it’s essential for a company to provide quality material to be considered a reliable resource. In the age of the Internet, there are far too many ways to stumble upon false information or be misled on a variety of topics. Why not put in the time and effort to establish yourself as a trustworthy source who offers engaging material that will keep consumers coming back?
Marketing is not always about touting your ability to answer questions or providing the best product. Sometimes it is simply about proving that you care about the outcome of a situation or the well-being of others, and showing that you have the means to help guide customers down the right path, whether it means a sale for you or not.