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Dec 26, 2004

The four-step program for using direct mail to recruitJoe Niewierskihuman relations, targeted marketing, recruitment So, you're looking to recruit new mortgage brokers. When you think about it, you probably hope that you can create enough interest in your company that you'll have enough hiring prospects to choose from and still be able to get the cream of the crop. There are many options out there for recruiting, but when looking for good mortgage brokers, it is best to look at what will get you the best return on investment (ROI). Similar to attracting clients to your business and calculating ROI by tracking what each of those leads spent, take a look through the same window in applying direct mail to recruiting brokers. Direct mail is one of the best ways to recruit. Why? 1. You can get a targeted list. When using direct mail, you can easily acquire a very targeted list of mortgage brokers. You can get a list of mortgage brokers with home addresses. You can get a list of brokers with a certain income. You can get a list of brokers in a certain area or a certain age range. This makes it easy to only attract the brokers who will fit your business model. Pay close attention to your list. It could take you from the "pedestrian" approach and shoot you over into the fast lane. Specific lists are not the only benefit in using direct mail to target new recruits. Now, let's look at the other points and see how they all tie together. 2. You can make the main "button" your headline. A "button" is a word, phrase, picture, etc. that elicits an emotional response. Your direct mail piece should show that the opportunities they will have at your company are better than the opportunities they will have at their present company--right off the bat. You want an emotional response because you want them calling you. In designing many direct mail postcards for the mortgage business, I have found that there are three key buttons to which brokers respond when being recruited. You can use any of these when using direct mail for recruiting. Using them in the headline will evoke the best response. The three main points that are going to get a broker's attention are: •Earn larger commissions •A better selection of products to offer •Brand recognition--you have a great company identity to back them up Making the headline tie in with your list is key. Maybe you pick a list where the subjects' annual incomes are a little low. You can target this demographic by saying something like, "Not taking enough home? We can give you higher commissions!" If your business model is having more products to sell and, consequently, a higher closing percentage for mortgage brokers, then get that message across in your headline. Remember, you only have a few seconds to communicate your message in a direct mail piece, so push your particular button in the headline. Let's say that your business model is such that you only offer a small portfolio of products because that is your niche, and you don't plan to expand your product line. You may want to push higher commission structure. In essence, pick one of the three major buttons that fits your company best and run with it. As a mortgage company, you give your brokers opportunities and pay them, in its simplistic form. Direct mail is one of the best forms of advertisement when recruiting because you push whichever opportunity button that directly communicates your business. Make that button your headline. Elicit that emotion, get the call. You can put your other opportunities or benefits as secondary communication, for example, in a bulleted form on the back of the postcard. But your headline needs to pop and pull with the main button that you want to get across. 3. Use a postcard. The difference in sending a nice professional letter rather than a postcard is this one thing: Are they going to open it? How many "junk mail" pieces do you receive and don't even open? Plenty. Get their attention in the few seconds that you have and get your point across. Postcards are short, sweet and to the point. You may never have that opportunity with a letter. Then, when they respond, follow up with a letter telling more about your company. But make sure that the letter features your same colors and/or logo so they recognize it as the same company who sent them the postcard. If you have a full-color dynamic postcard that says, "Wish you were reaching your full potential as a mortgage broker?" or "Are your commissions not what they're cracked up to be?," that is going to jump out at them. Thats exactly what you want. Now you've got their attention, and they will be more likely to call and see what you have to tell them. Also, you want to get your message across with two or three postcards, each slightly different than the first, but with the same look, feel and colors. All you want to say is what opportunity you are offering; don't put all of the details on the card, just make them want it and make them call. A letter or package sent out afterward that explains your whole business, what you can offer them, what products you offer, what your commission scale is (many times your commission scale is too much to put in the postcard) is a great follow-up. On the postcard, just tell them that more than likely what you're offering is better than what they are getting now. 4. Finally, tell them to give you a call. Your headline and graphic are the most important parts. Get their attention first as the main focus, then they will turn the postcard over to read what else you want to tell them. But don't forget to command them to call you. You can be extremely effective in recruiting with direct mail postcards because with direct mail, you are aiming your message to a well-defined target that is more likely to respond than if you just shot off an arrow with your eyes closed. Good luck and happy hunting! Joe Niewierski is vice president of marketing and promotion for PostcardMania. He may be reached at (800) 628-1804 or e-mail [email protected].
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