The biggest reason mortgage originators don’t succeed or do better is because they are selling the wrong thing. They focus on selling their products, price, company and service instead of themselves.
Real Estate agents, whose commissions depend on successful loan transactions, don’t buy institutions or products; they buy mortgage originators who make transactions and commissions happen. Understanding this fact is the first step in realizing the value of personal marketing.
If you succeed, it is more often than not because you are marketing yourself continually and effectively. If you are not attaining the levels of productivity you want, you are somehow failing to market yourself, or not doing it continually. This fact points out the value and benefit of a personal marketing.
Personal marketing will help you become an effective relationship builder; someone who can target, develop and maintain relationships with a referral base of business that will keep you and your institution in business. Use it to make yourself more productive and successful by using proven techniques to market yourself. It is a process that provides value by developing, and sustaining, a professional image of you.
Marketing Isn’t Selling
Traditional selling is taking an existing product or service and creating a need/want/demand for it. It is a “ready-shoot-aim” process that takes a shotgun approach to prospects — the more you shoot, the more likely you are to hit someone. Most mortgage originators use this type of approach. They “sell” their products, rates, service, etc. without any real knowledge of their prospects’ needs. By pushing the product, price and service, they hope they will create a “need”.
Relational selling and marketing, in contrast, requires determining what people (your target audience — in this case Real Estate agents) need/want/demand and creating a product and service to fill their “need gap.” It entails aiming before you shoot and is a much more surgical and focused approach. It is understanding first before trying to be understood.
A key aspect of personal marketing is knowing what Real Estate agents want, and designing a vehicle to fit that need. At the beginning of the article we noted that they want completed loan transactions and the commissions they generate. But, they want relationships first as the vehicle that produces those closed loans and commissions. They want mortgage originators they can work with time and time again: who make things happen, provide value-added services and help them succeed in their part of the business. Being that proactive business partner and letting the right Real Estate agent know who you are, is key to your competitiveness and productivity.
Marketing is a powerful discipline, regardless of economic conditions. Because it involves a planned, strategic approach, marketing maximizes your effectiveness. It enables you to direct your energies into the areas that will be most productive. Therefore, your thinking is more focused on enhancing the value-added nature of your services. It’s hard not to win big when your customers’ success is what drives your thoughts and actions.
Marketing yourself is probably the most powerful thing you can do to increase your business. We are not talking about rate sheets, topical flyers and business card distribution. Marketing needs to be an ongoing campaign that through various vehicles, promotes you in the marketplace as different and unique. You become the one with the reputation for doing things differently while providing more frequent and more effective value to your potential prospects.