Being a good lender involves a lot of documentation, but the process goes far beyond pushing paperwork. If you are looking to build better relationships with your clients, increase referrals and in turn close more deals, the key to success is going above and beyond for homebuyers to make sure they are financially prepared to find their next home and having the tools necessary to secure the best rates.
1. Tried-and-True Methods
The digital age has changed the way lenders generate mortgage leads. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t include classic, tried-and-true methods of lead generation in your repertoire, but it also means you can’t depend only on these methods to bring in buyers, especially younger people.
Traditional methods of lead generation include:
- Direct mail
- Email blasts
- Live events
Then there is the ultimate old-fashioned method: cold-calling. That’s probably a method to drop. Not only is it time-consuming, but people today screen their calls and are unlikely to pick up ones from unfamiliar numbers. Potential buyers get all their basic information from the internet nowadays, which is why an outstanding website is so crucial for lead generation.
2. State-of-the-Art Website
Let’s assume your website is fresh, interesting and full of the information potential homebuyers seek — but if you haven’t updated your website in several years, do so as soon as possible. Without a first-rate website, you will not generate the traffic necessary to gain leads. You also want your website to contain all the FAQs and answers a potential borrower can want, so it becomes a destination for anyone looking for current, factual information.
3. Content is King
Once you’ve revamped your website, start generating leads by providing superb content. Anticipate the questions consumers have and answer them. Establish your site and content as authoritative and the place to go for the latest mortgage information.
Great content is informative while also easy to digest. Today’s homebuyers run the gamut in the way they prefer to receive information, so make sure your content has something for everyone by providing more than just copy, and — when appropriate — also includes:
- Profiles of happy homebuyers you have helped
4. Social Media
If content is king, social media isn’t far behind. Share your content regularly on major platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Instagram and Pinterest are good choices for adding visual content — that’s where you can post photos of satisfied clients and their new homes (with their permission, of course).
Set yourself apart from competitors by specializing in particular types of real estate or mortgage loans. If you don’t have such a specialty now, develop one. Perhaps focus on niche real estate, such as horse farms or vacation properties, depending on your locale. Became an expert in loan programs that let eligible clients make lower down payments or create more-customized mortgages.
6. Ask for Referrals
Referrals are among the top lead generators. When a customer is pleased enough with your service to recommend you to friends and relatives, that is as good as it gets. Even better are referrals from Realtors.
How to get referrals? That’s a matter of providing top-notch service and working hard to ensure that your customers obtain the best mortgage terms available to them. Receiving referrals from Realtors is a different matter. That involves bringing clients to the Realtor and getting deals done. Because lots of lenders are competing for Realtor referrals, stand out by personalizing your messages and building real relationships rather than sending standard emails or marketing materials to these professionals. Concentrate on some of the newer agents in your area rather than the top agents — the latter probably already have lenders they are working with, while new agents are in the midst of building such relationships and more likely to respond.
Let’s talk about how to ask for referrals. It’s a bit of an art and a science. Keep in touch with clients after the closing. Set up a referral program and send it to your satisfied customers. Ask them to leave positive online reviews, which are great influencers among homebuyers. Speed up the process by sending them the link.
How ScoreMaster® Can Help
As a lender, you can offer support, insight and even financial guidance that helps buyers get their best credit scores. ScoreMaster,® with its gamified system, also serves as an excellent tool for generating more leads. How? It makes for more satisfied clients who spread the word. Lenders offering ScoreMaster® for free to clients help them save and qualify for better mortgages as they start their home searches. Contact ScoreMaster® today and learn how we can help.
*Legal Disclaimer – ScoreMaster is a patent-pending educational feature simulating credit utilization’s effect on credit scores via payments or spending. Your results may vary and are not guaranteed.