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How's your bedside manner?

National Mortgage Professional
Feb 03, 2005

How to get leads regardless of ratesDave Czachtargeting clientele, client profile, demographics, niche marketing, prospects By now, we all know that the gravy train has left the station. So let's slide out our "nuts and bolts" tray, and build a train that will last through both good and bad times. But first, remind yourself of the basic rule of sales and marketing: people's decision to buy is based on emotions. So, the primary question is, "What emotion(s) will trigger a person to seek a mortgage loan regardless of interest rates?" If you can pinpoint your prospect's emotion to buy, you can consistently enjoy sales. With that in mind, let's engineer our success train. To identify your customer, you must brainstorm, critique, and create demographics. Brainstorming is very simple. However, I'm going to add a few maneuvers that may appear trivial, but are extremely effective. To begin with, brainstorming is most effective with two or more people who share similar states of mind. This produces your results faster because of synchronized creative energy. For example, have you ever been in a meeting where someone else finished your idea almost verbatim? That is called synchronicity, and it is the optimum brainstorming level you want to achieve. Here's how to do it: Dynamic brainstorming can be completed in two easy steps: preparation and engagement. To prepare for brainstorming, grab plenty of pens and paper. Go to your conference room, and be sure to tell everyone that you are not to be disturbed. Now, sit comfortably and at the top of your page, write in all caps, "RELAX-ACCESS-EMOTIONS-SOLUTIONS." Immediately below that line in lower case, write, "High Quality Mortgage Leads." Now, turn off your cell phones and pagers, and disconnect the phone in the room. Everyone sit with your back straight. Close your eyes. Take ten very deep breaths, exhaling slowly while visualizing yourself attending your client's closing, and engage. The engagement portion of brainstorming is supposed to be fun. To get started, someone simply says, "Everyone tell the group at least two reasons why people need money." Don't be shy. Just blurt out an idea when you have it. Everyone should be sure to write down all the ideas they hear as fast as they can. It's crucial not to criticize any idea because even a "dumb" idea can be the catalyst for a great one. Just write it down and say another idea. Soon, ideas should be bouncing around faster than you can write. If you don't get any ideas, stand up. Walk around the room. Stretch. Sit on the table. Stand on your chair. Even dance. Do anything that will give you a different perception and joggle your mind. Do this for 30-60 minutes without a break. Then place your pen and paper on the table in front of your seat. Leave the room. Close the door. Take a 15-minute break without discussing the brainstorming session. Now complete part two. Critique your brainstorming by playing musical chairs. Re-enter the room, and turn off your cell phones and pagers again. This time, rotate your seating without moving the papers on the table. If you're in a group, sit two seats to the right of where you were seated. Now read the ideas on the page in front of you, not your page. Mark the great ideas, and discard the others. Then, choose someone to write the groups' critiques on another piece of paper or a white board. Make two columns. In the left column, write all the ideas that remain--these are now called features. In the right column, write the corresponding benefit to your client. For example, if a feature is retirement income, some benefits may include an exciting quality of life, international travel during the customer's golden years, or resources to visit grandchildren. Encourage the group to state several benefits for each feature. Now, morph your features and benefits into real demographics. Creating a hyper-targeted client profile saves time and money. You want to make your demographics as narrow as possible because this will produce the best results. Use your feature benefits sheet as a guide. Take each feature benefit begin and asking questions. What type of person would this be? What age bracket? Which gender is more concerned with this benefit? Is this prospect married? What is their income level? Do they have children living at home? If so, what ages? Are they blue collar, white collar, or self-employed? What is most important to this prospect? What problem does this solve? How much equity would this type of person have? Ask these questions by delving into the mind of your prospects. Pretend you are in their shoes. Who are they? What are they? Where are they? For instance, using retirement income as our feature, I can think of three different types of prospects in this category. They include people who are already retired, middle-aged individuals, and those just starting their careers. Each group would require a separate strategy. Now ask the above questions for each of these categories to further target your leads. Choosing the category "people already retired," you could have two sub-categories such as fixed income with limited or no assets, but equity in the house, and high-disposable income with ample equity. If your focus would be the first sub-category, your hyper-targeted demographics could be retired homeowners with fixed incomes, and limited or no assets, but equity in their house. Now let's make sense out of all this information. Three more turns and we can leave the station. First, use your hyper-targeted demographics to purchase accurate mailing lists. Second, determine which loan program to sell to each specific client. Third, state your benefits in glowing terms to activate your prospect's emotions and create a mental picture they desire. When you purchase your mailing list, be certain to require a list with your exact demographics. The price may be slightly higher because the more demographics you request, the higher the price. But it's worth it. You can find dozens of high-quality mailing list companies at your local public library. Ask the librarian for the SRDS Direct Marketing List Source directory and look under "homeowners." Research your loan products and locate the best program available that matches your demographics. For example, using your demographic information, you could offer a reverse mortgage so your retired clients receive cash now to enjoy their golden years, plus additional income. If they don't qualify for a reverse mortgage, you could do a cash-out refinance for a vacation and buy an annuity for more income. Now, put the coal in the engine. State your benefits in glowing terms in your sales letter or telemarketing script. Be sure to mention that if they want to experience these benefits, they must act now. It's very important to write a separate script or sales letter for each sub-category using its specific benefits. You would also want to mention your name a few times, so while they are on their wonderful vacation in France, they will remember how you made it possible, thus linking you with their positive emotions. Finally, hop aboard your new success train. By focusing on people's emotions and being their vehicle to solving their problems or living their dreams, you can enjoy many referrals and prosper regardless of interest rates. Dave Czach is a 12-year mortgage veteran turned author/publisher. He can be reached at www.gozakman.com.
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