Veronica Nguyen of BeSmartee: Marketing Mistakes Lenders Make
Veronica Nguyen is Co-Founder and Executive Vice President of BeWSmartee, Huntington Beach, Calif. She previously served as Co-Founder and Director of Inhouse Inc. before co-founding BeSmartee in 2012. She was a 2020 HousingWire Woman of Influence Award winner and earned a 2021 Mortgage Star Award from Mortgage Women Magazine.
Marketing is a critical aspect of any successful business, and it’s essential to understand the steps involved in attracting and retaining customers. In times when mortgage volume is down, marketing departments need to execute a strategy that not only attracts new customers but one that can retain those customers as well.
When times are good, it’s easy to ignore what is working and what is not, until you find yourself scrambling for leads. This is when you should be looking at your current marketing department to identify missed opportunities. As leaders of any organization, we have to admit to our marketing mistakes.
Common Mistakes You’re Making in Marketing
- You don’t have a solid strategy to attract and capture customers.
- You perform a lot of marketing activities but you don’t have a way to track all the data.
- There is no ongoing training on learning how to close deals effectively.
- Engagement doesn’t continue once a deal is closed.
Do any of the mistakes mentioned sound familiar? Or, better yet, when was the last time you got a report that showed you repeat business or how many new deals you received from your marketing efforts.
Let’s dive into each step and understand why it is crucial to your marketing strategy.
Step 1. Attract and Capture Potential Customers to Your Business
To promote your loan products effectively, it is crucial to create awareness about them among potential buyers. This can be achieved through various means, including advertising, content marketing, social media and search engine optimization (SEO). However, it is vital to identify your target audience first and create content that resonates with them.
For instance, suppose your company provides reverse mortgages. In that case, your target audience and message should be different from those aimed at first-time homebuyers. Understanding your audience’s needs and preferences will help you create content that engages them and encourages them to consider your loan products.
After attracting potential customers, the next step is to capture their attention and gather some of their personal information. You can achieve this by offering them something of value, such as a free ebook, webinar or free consultation, in exchange for their contact details. Collecting this information is critical, as it allows you to continue marketing to these individuals, even if they don’t convert immediately. By nurturing these leads with targeted marketing efforts, you can increase the likelihood of converting them into paying customers in the future.
Ideas for Execution
- Hold educational sessions
- Partner with local realtors
- Create content that is relatable to your audience
2. Track Your Conversion
The next step is to convert your potential customers into paying customers. This is where you need to show them the value of your product. Give them the reason “why” they should choose you over your competitors.
According to research from Freddie Mac, borrowers should be shopping from 3-5 lenders and with today’s easy to access information borrowers are getting multiple quotes from different lenders. So, be ready to differentiate yourself.
If you are buying trigger leads, keep in mind that it can be frustrating for customers to receive multiple calls from different mortgage companies. To set yourself apart, consider what makes your services unique, whether it’s offering better products, lower rates or something else entirely.
The crucial aspect is to simplify the process of selecting you as their preferred lender and demonstrate to them how your product or service can effectively address their concerns.
Ideas for Execution
- Track who comes into your Mortgage Point-of-Sale platform, from start to finish
- Create tracking codes for every single marketing campaign you send out
- Demand reports from any lead generator you buy ads from and compare it to your internal analytics to make sure numbers match
Once you have convinced potential customers of the value of your product, the next step is to close the sale. This is where you need to provide a seamless checkout process, offer multiple payment options and provide excellent customer service. Make sure you address any concerns or objections they may have and make the purchasing process as straightforward as possible.
If this means that your loan officers hand held this process so be it. Just make sure that it is as easy as possible for them. After all, they trust you to get the job done!
Ideas for Execution
- Have ongoing training with your loan officers so they know how to close deals faster and more efficiently
- Be the expert
- Be accessible via text, phone, email or any internal borrower platform
4. Retain Customers
Ensuring customer satisfaction and loyalty is the ultimate goal for any business. To achieve this, you must provide excellent customer service, listen to their feedback and offer ongoing support. However, this can be challenging for lenders, particularly when customers don’t require loans frequently. In such cases, it is essential to recognize that customer loyalty is a long-term journey that requires patience.
By establishing a strong relationship with your customers, you can remain at the forefront of their minds when they are ready to refinance or seek a home equity loan. This can be achieved through consistent communication and providing personalized experiences that cater to their specific needs. Loyalty programs and exclusive content are other ways to keep customers engaged and encourage them to return to your business.
Ultimately, the key to retaining customers is to provide exceptional service that meets or exceeds their expectations. By doing so, you can build a loyal customer base that not only generates repeat business but also refers your services to others.
Ideas For Execution
- Connect your technology stack with a robust CRM and POS so that you can continue to market to those customers.
- Create a calendar of touch points (Customer Retention Program).
- Create original content.
By implementing these critical steps, you can successfully attract potential customers, capture their attention, gather valuable information, convert them into paying customers, close the sale and retain their loyalty to your brand. However, it is important to remember that marketing is an ongoing process that requires continuous analysis and optimization to remain ahead of your competitors.
To stay ahead, regularly assess the performance of your marketing efforts and analyze the data to identify areas that require improvement. By analyzing the metrics, you can gain valuable insights into what works and what doesn’t, enabling you to optimize your marketing strategies for better results.
Ultimately, numbers never lie, so it is crucial to keep a close eye on the data and adjust your marketing efforts accordingly. By staying on top of the latest trends and continuously refining your approach, you can maintain a competitive edge, and attract and retain customers successfully.
(Views expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect policies of the Mortgage Bankers Association, nor do they connote an MBA endorsement of a specific company, product or service. MBA NewsLink welcomes your submissions. Inquiries can be sent to Mike Sorohan, editor, at firstname.lastname@example.org; or Michael Tucker, editorial manager, at email@example.com.)