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Don't survive--succeed!

Dec 26, 2007

Still standing? Time to strengthen your foundationRyan Floriocompany and bank closings, post-mortgage-war sales opportunities Change, it seems, is the only thing that is constant and the only thing we can depend on. It makes perfect sense, and yet sometimes change can be pretty daunting. This is certainly the case today in the mortgage industry, since a lot of the change is occurring on a daily basis and without any notice. Some of the more traumatic incidents of change have included company and bank closings, lost jobs and lost sales opportunity. If you are reading this now, then it's safe to assume you have not been a casualty of this mortgage epidemic. You are likely still standing. Now that the dust is settling, it's important to give yourself credit. Something about your operations and the way you conduct your business has earned your survival (at least for the time being). I write this because there is still a lot of fear concerning the future of the industry at large, and a lot of this fear is being felt by consumers as well. Who can be trusted, after all? Herein lies the opportunity, and it's a gorgeous one. "Post-mortgage-war" sales opportunities will come in at an all-time high for those who position themselves as experts in the field. The only way to establish this credibility is by communicating a message of expertise to your client base in a consistent and meaningful manner. Assure your customers that you are still in operation and that you are continually mindful of their changing needs. Remember their interest in a vacation home or investment property, or the ages of their college-bound children. This personal interest will provide them the reassurance that they made the right decision to work with you. It will also create an underlying trust that they can depend on you for future needs. Next, create a game plan to engage your customers personally, and maintain this dialogue with periodic handwritten notes or phone calls to wish them well. Doing so not only creates a natural rhythm of friendship, but it also reminds them of your services. In my consulting endeavors, it always amazes me that so many sales opportunities are lost due to lack of post-closing communication. By remaining proactive, you can bank on earning three to four qualified referrals from each of your satisfied customers. Finally, share information about your professional services with friends, family and those in your networking groups. Just as an attorney or medical professional in the family is often called upon for guidance, so should you, too, be considered as the expert in your field. Send periodic announcements of your developments, along with contact information, so that you can be called upon easily. A key to longevity is making yourself accessible. In spite of the way things may seem from first appearances, things couldn't be better for those in the mortgage industry who are planning for a long and robust career. After all, in the face of adversity, we see where our strengths lie. Now that you have survived the change, embrace it. By showing your leadership ability and then communicating your dependability, your client base will strengthen and support you through the best and worst of times. Ryan Florio is president and CEO of Cleveland-based, a Web-based company that offers automated Client Relationship Programs as a vehicle for client retention. He may be reached at (888) 863-6276 or e-mail [email protected].
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