Mortgage referrals: too many are not enough
Lead generation is constantly top of mind for loan officers and mortgage brokers. Turning prospects into clients is an elaborate chess game that you’re playing, even in your sleep. There is one queen piece in this game, however: referrals.
Mortgage referrals are a near-magical combination of testimonial and lead, directing people to you via people they already trust. Referrals are an incredibly valuable business commodity, so how can you generate more of them? It all starts with who you know, and who knows you.
Start with a lead idea list, from A to Z
This handy list from National Mortgage News gives you 52 different ways to generate leads, and they’re in alphabetical order, which will help you to recall them later on. From Accountants and Advertising to Websites, this list is a great idea generator. Have you checked in with carpet cleaners? They’re usually doing jobs for someone selling their homes. Have you checked on the local garage sales to see if they’re selling? Small referrals can lead to big leads.
Who do you know?
Think about everyone you come into contact with during your day. Not just at your desk — where you should ask every client to refer two friends to you while they’re filling out an application — but on your daily commute or weekend adventures. Baristas, mail carriers, crossing guards, train conductors… these are all people you probably talk to and know a bit about. Do they know what you do? Do you know if they’re looking to buy a home? It’s a major life event, and chances are they’ll talk about it in the course of everyday conversation. Check in with the people on your list often.
Run digital ads to the people in your database
Digital ads for mortgage aren’t just for new business. They’re a way to remind the people you’ve already worked with that you are their go-to mortgage expert. If you were their loan officer when they bought their home, you should be the loan officer they call for a refinance. Why not? You have a relationship. You just need to remind them with very subtle digital ads.
Don’t have a mortgage client list? Start one yesterday.
Many loan officers don’t keep track of their clients. They are so focused on the next new client, they forget who they did business with. So you might need to go back and build your list from sources like LinkedIn, Facebook, your iPhone contacts. Combine them all together and load them into a sphere campaign from Adwerx for mortgage.
Get loud and get outside your comfort zone.
If you don’t ask, you don’t get. People, including your clients past and present, won’t know you’re in need of referrals if you don’t tell them. Perhaps include an easy-to-fill-out form link in your email signature, or put an announcement on your social media page about referrals, and offer a potential reward, such as an entry in a drawing to win a gift card, perhaps. See if you can set up your service on customer review sites like Yelp in order to let people refer each other to you with positive reviews.
Referrals are the true testament of your value as a loan officer. The mortgage process can be an intimidating one. While the real estate transaction is about the emotion of a home, the loan is really about the fiscal aspect of the deal. But you can still be of value to your clients who would rather work with someone they trust and had success with before than shop around for refinancing and new home mortgage rates.