How Mortgage Brokers Can Adapt to Meet Growing Digital Demand
In a world where there are multiple demands on our time, convenience is becoming increasingly important when choosing service providers. If we can do something from the comfort of our homes, we want it, and that’s driving many businesses to find innovative solutions to meet growing digital demand.
How digitally fluent is your business? Successful mortgage brokers are agile with their business processes and they can offer their clients options to apply for and finalize a mortgage.
If you had not already adapted to an increasingly digital business model, the events of 2020 moved you to find a new way to work with your clients. As you become more comfortable with the apps and technology, you can also find more creative ways to connect with your clients.
Ask yourself what steps you can take to make it easier to conduct business going forward.
Digitally transform your sales process
If you haven’t already, it makes sense to invest time in digitally transforming your sales process because it’s the way much of your business will be done.
Focus on relationship building
Prepare for the future by building relationships with your clients using technology that they are most comfortable with, whether that be a phone call, video chat or a friendly email. This isn’t about getting new business or selling anything; it’s simply being there for them and reaching out. You may want to read Communicating during a crisis: 5 tips for brokers to keep in mind for suggestions about approaching these conversations.
Shift to a digital filing system
Our world is going paperless. It’s much easier to lay your hands on an important document when you can search for it by keyword. You can access important information when you need it from wherever you are when you maintain digital files. For example, the Microsoft Remote Desktop app for your phone lets you connect to and work with files on your computer. Or save your files to Google Drive or Dropbox and log in from any device to see your files.
Even where an original paper document is required, scanning technology has made it easier to capture digital information on the go. If you haven’t already, consider converting to digital files. We have some advice in Piles to paperless: portable & phone scanner app options.
Make meaningful virtual connections
Physically distant doesn’t have to be socially distant.
When you have business to conduct, make it as comfortable as possible for the other person by using technology to connect in a meaningful way.
Sure, you could just call your clients, but using video conferencing allows you to see them and share your screen as you go over mortgage documents. How much easier it would be to walk through a complicated agreement if they could follow along with you on the screen, just as if they were sitting across from you in your office.
Consider setting up a digital toolbox that puts several resources at your fingertips (and helps you be the expert for your clients). You can easily access these resources before, during, or after speaking with your clients. Think about each client and the questions they are likely to ask and the information you think they need. Some examples of resources you could present are down payment sources, 5 C’s of credit or debt service ratio material. You can walk through the information during your meeting or send them information afterward. Bridgewater Bank has a collection of client shareables available to you for this exact purpose.
There are also other ways to build a connection. If you would normally meet your client for coffee, send them a coffee card by email the day before the meeting. Be creative. Your clients will appreciate the personal touch.
Adapt your digital marketing strategy
These days, digital marketing is where it’s at. People go online to research everything from what appliance to purchase to reliable contractors. They will certainly be researching mortgages and mortgage brokers before deciding who can help them find the best mortgage product for their situation. If you don’t build your online presence, potential clients won’t be able to find you. It’s worthwhile to invest some time in boosting your digital marketing strategy.
Digital marketing refers to promoting your services on digital channels such as Google Ads, social media and email. You only have so much time in your day, and if you’re doing your own marketing you need to invest your time on platforms that will give you the biggest return. Here are a few suggestions:
- LinkedIn – 5 LinkedIn Profile Tips to Help Brokers Get More Leads
- Google – Back to Basics: Online resources to elevate your digital marketing skills
- Email – Increase Your Online Leads by Leveraging Mortgage Broker Email Lists
Create or share educational content for clients.
When people are about to make a major life decision, like taking on a mortgage, they appreciate advice from trusted experts. There is so much information out there, it may be difficult to know which sources are trustworthy. When it comes to mortgages, that trustworthy expert should be you.
Whether you create your own content or source information that you trust, now would be a great time to start building a resource library.
As mentioned above, Bridgewater Bank has created a series of client shareables that you can download and send to your clients.
Once you have your content, review your client list and send out the information that pertains to their situation. Are they shopping around for a new rate, looking for a vacation home, or looking to consolidate debt? Even general advice, such as building an emergency fund, lets them know you’re thinking about their financial well-being.
An educated client is an empowered client. The more knowledge your clients have, the more informed their decisions will be.
Focus on local SEO.
If a potential client did an Internet search with the keywords “mortgage broker” and the name of their city, would you come up in the search results? If not, a search engine optimization (SEO) plan can help you gain a competitive advantage
A properly executed SEO plan will drive traffic to your website and convert those Internet users into clients. If you have any specialty services to offer, you can incorporate those keywords into your plan as well.
It may be wise to seek the help of an SEO specialist to help you conduct keyword research, analyze your website performance, and develop a strategy to connect with local mortgage seekers. Sites like Upwork let you find freelancers in your area who can help put some low-cost programs into place.
Lay the foundation for your digital communication now, and it will be easier to maintain as demand for new ways of doing business grows.
If you’re looking for specific resources, especially about alternative mortgages, contact one of our business development managers to get the expert advice you need.