Pre- and Post-Trade Show Mailers
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Pre- and Post-Trade Show Mailers

May 31, 2004

Relationships After the SaleIvy CohenSales, Marketing Strategies, Repeat Business
Today's Environment
Today's mortgage market is extremely challenging-in just a year's
time, the focus of the industry has changed drastically. Not too
long ago, a Mortgage Broker's revenue came entirely from new home
purchases-today, half of your business is refinancing, compelling
brokers to approach business in a much different fashion.
As mortgage lenders, your business objectives are to sell
mortgages and refinancing packages, identify additional products to
sell, and serve as the lender of choice when your clients purchase
homes. Not only do you need to develop a short-term perspective on
packaging and promoting your products, but you must also exercise a
long-term view if you want to see any repeat business.
Successful Marketing Strategies
When it comes to marketing, most mortgage firms employ a variety of
strategies to help to identify prospects, promote products and
close deals. Mortgage Brokers must devise an approach to
distinguish those prospects who are refinancing from those in the
market for a new home-successful companies will map out an
integrated marketing approach to pursue clients interested in
refinancing. Monthly mortgage newsletters and semi-annual telephone
calls are fundamental to exploring a client's financial situation,
as well as their plans for the future. This contact helps lenders
determine whether their customers need any additional services to
help them improve their credit.
In addition, gifts packed with personal financial management
tips, like monthly clients-only newsletters, will help to maintain
a friendly rapport while keeping channels open for
communication.
In order to identify clients in the market who are looking to
buy a new home, top companies will target a select market area, and
mail monthly postcards to each resident-hopefully, this should grab
the attention of those who are making plans to purchase a home for
the first time. Another proven strategy has been to cross-market
with partners in compatible industries-communicating regularly with
real estate agents, accountants and financial planners will keep
your company on the front burner when a client is ready to take out
or refinance a mortgage.
Moving From First Sale to Long-Term
Relationship
Once you have closed a sale, it is critical to maintain a
relationship with the client, positioning yourself as their lender
of choice for any future mortgage-related business they may have.
Not only will this supply you with a steady stream of loyal
clientele, but it will also provide a referral base of family and
friends. Some companies provide fresh and effective marketing
approaches to maintain communication, by sending personalized
magazine subscriptions to past clients as a thank-you to anyone who
has sent a referral. Strategically-placed, customized messages will
enable lenders to stay fresh in their clients' minds.
Typical Incentives
Many mortgage lenders present gifts to clients as a thank you for
new or return business. Since most companies do not set very much
money aside for such things, pre-paid gift cards are good,
cost-effective ideas. All gifts should reflect similar values and
aim for amusement and usefulness. Additionally, originators must
remember not to violate any Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act
guidelines, which prohibit direct compensation to the referral
source.
Effective Holiday Gifts
As we enter the holiday season, many brokers will purchase gifts
for their clients. It will be helpful to your business to buy gifts
that:
1. Appeal to a broad base;
2. Are easy to order and deliver;
3. Are inexpensive yet provide a personal touch;
4. Attract attention; and, most importantly
5. Avoid directly pushing financial products and tax returns.
In a recent study comparing the values of different business
gifts, some of the most notable incentives reviewed included
bottles of wine, day spas, flowers or gift certificates. Day spas
rank high in sophistication, while the rest of the list ranks
medium or low. Furthermore, gift certificates rank relatively high
for price value, although are considered low for repetition and
longevity.
Repeat Business
As a mortgage lender, your greatest aspiration is to have a strong
client base filled with repeat customers who actively refer you to
their relatives and acquaintances. In order to accomplish this, you
must maintain contact with them throughout the year; continually
finding new ways to reach out without beating them over the head.
You need to be more than "just the mortgage guy," by demonstrating
that you are genuinely concerned about getting the best deal
possible.
You need to overcome the weights, points and technicalities
involved in your industry, and learn to know your clients. When you
successfully treat them as more than just loan numbers, you will
have their future business in the palm of your hand.
Ivy Cohen advises companies on
strategies and programs to build their reputations across the
country and around the globe. She can be reached by phone at (415)
637-8595 or visit www.ivycohen.com.

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