Five Little Ways to Market Small LoansMatthew BurkSmall, loan, marketing
As more residential Mortgage Brokers begin to tap into the small
commercial lending market, one question is often asked: What is the
best way not to stumble into the deals, but rather generate
consistent, quality leads in a proactive fashion?
Below are five, easy, inexpensive ways to market for commercial
leads. The methods I mention below only require time and effort,
not a huge marketing department and deep pockets.
Referrals From Commercial Bankers
As a general rule, nothing will ensure longevity in this
business better than establishing and cultivating strong referral
relationships. Having a solid referral relationship is akin to
having your own sales force working on your behalf in the
Commercial bankers are an excellent source of commercial real
estate loans. Due to the fact that many commercial banks have
fairly stringent underwriting standards, banks turn down many
borrowers that you can help. There are many reasons why a loan may
not meet their guidelinesthe loan may be too small, the borrower
may not have the time necessary for a traditional lender to process
the loan, they may not document their income on their tax returns
or the property might not meet their standards.
Suffice it to say that there are many borrowers that will not
qualify. These represent good income opportunities for Mortgage
Brokers with good bank relationships. Advise bankers that you offer
loans with smaller loan amounts, that your program does not require
A+ borrowers and/or whatever other niche products are available to
Referrals From Commercial Real Estate Agents
This source of commercial leads is an extension of the
first tactic. Commercial real estate agents are constantly working
with people who buy and sell commercial real estate. You can help
them with smaller transaction sizes or with borrowers that may not
qualify at a traditional commercial bank.
Joining a commercial real estate association is a great way to meet
people in the business. Associations include the Certified
Commercial Investment Members Institute, Commercial Real Estate
Women and CAR, to name a few. You will make excellent contacts and
learn more about the commercial real estate market.
The key to your success in an association is to make a commitment
to attend regularly. You can not reap the benefits unless you
attend every meetingassociation involvement is a time and
commitment marketing tactic.
Spread the Word To Existing Contacts and Clients
In many cases, your best commercial clients may already
be in your database. Several of your residential clients may own
commercial real estate, or know someone else who does. Advise your
clients and existing professional contacts that you arrange both
residential and commercial loans. You can start by simply picking
up the phone and calling people you know. Get the word out and you
will be surprised by how many clients you can get without making a
single phone call.
The advantage of classified advertising is, since they
cost a fraction of full-page color display ads, the ad can be run
for a longer period of time. After all, success in marketing comes
from repetition and longevity.
I can assure you that if you consistently use the above marketing
tactics, you will begin to generate leads. Before beginning,
contact a handful of well-established, reputable commercial lenders
and learn about their lending products. Take the time to know what
is available to you and know your lenders' preferences. By doing
your homework, your rate of turning new leads into closed loans
will increase tremendously!
Matthew Burk is president of Fairway Commercial Mortgage, a direct
lending Mortgage Banker specializing in small commercial real
estate loans. He can be reached by phone at (503) 241-2340 or
e-mail [email protected]