When it comes to nurturing mortgage leads and turning them into satisfied clients there are tons of tools that brokers use to help them succeed. While the tool set is constantly evolving and changing, two tools that have been around for quite some time and are still super effective at moving leads from interested parties to qualified prospects to clients are phone calls and text messages. Both tools require specific best practices and strategies and today we want to examine them in detail.
Text Message Marketing Campaigns
The idea of initial lead follow up campaigns is to pull interested parties into your pipeline, turning them into qualified leads. Leads generated from digital ads, lead magnets from your blog content, or from contact forms on your brokerage’s website should all have their own follow-up text campaigns that will go out as the leads come in. When drafting the copy that will be used in these campaigns, follow these best practices:
- Mention what you are following up on (e.g. Thanks for downloading our “tips for refinancing your home loan ebook”)
- Ask an open-ended question to spark a conversation (e.g. When is your current mortgage set to adjust?)
- Give a clear statement to what the next step is you would like to accomplish (e.g. Are you free for a quick phone call today to discuss your options?)
Similarly to the lead follow up campaigns, you will want to develop nurturing campaigns that fit each type of loan service your brokerage provides. For instance, you can create a campaign for new home loans and one for loan refinances. If you have some specialty loan programs such as loans for educators, medical professionals or veterans, you would want to create a nurturing campaign specific to each of those specialties as well.
Text messages are brief interactions, which of course makes educating people difficult. For these reasons, brief messages that link to educational content are generally best. Here are some great examples of content you can link out to in your Text messages:
- Infographics or videos that explain the loan process for the particular type of loan a lead is interested in
- An ebook or blog article that explains the borrowing process and the role you play in helping your lead achieve their goals
- Testimonials from past clients that have successfully worked with you and closed a similar loan
Equally important to attracting a lead and convincing them to do business with you is the experience they have when they actually are working with you. To improve the customer experience and increase their satisfaction, you should set up a series of text updates that go out to your client as each stage of the loan process is completed. In your messages, you want to be sure to include:
- What stage of the loan process they are currently in
- The result of that stage (e.g. we’ve successfully pre-approved you)
- What the next stage of the loan process will be
Post Transaction Follow-Up
After you’ve successfully closed a loan for your client, it’s time to harness the power of text to grow your business off the goodwill you’ve built with your happy client. This is the perfect opportunity to ask your client to share the experience they had with you to the world. Some messages you would want to include in these campaigns include:
- A link to an online review site with a request that they give you a review
- Asking them to reply with the names of a few friends or family members they know that might benefit from your services
- A link to an online survey where they can share with you private, specific feedback and details of how they think your brokerage performed, allowing you to constantly improve your team’s services.
Call Campaigns You Should Develop
The mortgage business is a personal business. There are very few things in life that a person will purchase that is more expensive, or more important to them than a home. Because of this, the personal interaction you have with a prospective client and the hands-on one-to-one communication you have with them throughout the loan process is critical if you want to successfully grow your mortgage brokerage.
As you scale your brokerage, it is understandable that you cannot do everything manually. That is okay. The trick is knowing what is important to do personally and what you can offload to a technology platform in the form of a campaign. Here are some campaigns we recommend setting up for your phone marketing strategies:
Remember, speed is important. For this reason, a ringless voicemail that immediately drops into a lead’s voicemail box is a great way to promote engagement. Similarly to your text campaigns, you’ll want to have specific campaigns running that address the type of lead that comes in. You should set up a separate series of follow up voicemails for each digital ad campaign, lead magnet, and website contact form you are using.
When recording these messages follow these best practices:
- Always state your name and the name of your brokerage. Remember that a lead may have contacted multiple brokers when exploring their loan options
- Mention what you are following up on (e.g. “I just received your request for information on refinancing your home loan”)
- Let them know how to contact you (e.g. “I’d love to set up a time to discuss this further with you. Please call me at XXX-XXX-XXXX”)
Pre-Recorded Call Blast Campaign
Your mortgage business is always evolving. As it evolves there are undoubtedly going to be new loan programs, changes to interest rates, or generalized opportunities such as holidays that you can use to keep in touch with qualified leads and clients, staying top of mind. Since these leads are no longer “cold leads”, use pre-recorded call blasts to amplify engagement. Pre-Recorded call blasts use your phone’s auto-dialer to contact your list of qualified leads or clients. When the lead or client picks up, a pre-recorded message will start playing. They can push a button on their phone anytime, which will immediately connect you on the phone with them. The auto-dialing process will optimize the time you spend on these campaigns, yet give you the ability to achieve higher engagement rates, allowing the phone system to automatically connect you with those that are most interested in what you have to offer.
Here are some tips best practices for these types of campaigns:
- Block off time at your desk during the time your automated call blast campaigns will be running so you can connect personally with anyone that is interested in learning more
- If your campaign revolves around something specific such as a particular loan program, segment your database to ensure the message is only going to the people that the message applies to
- Because the caller ID on the call blast will likely be a number other than the number at your desk extension, be sure to give them your call back number so they can follow up with you, if needed.
Automate Your Call & Text Marketing Campaigns
There is a lot to keep track of when growing a successful mortgage brokerage. There is the speed at which you follow up with incoming leads, the campaigns you’re running to nurture and educate leads as to why they should work with your brokerage, updates to clients on loans that are in progress and even post loan follow up communications that help you build social proof and grow. That’s not even to mention the day to day issues that pop up with loans in progress, managing team needs, and whatever personalized communications and follow-ups you need to be a part of.
For these reasons, using automated platforms that handle call and text campaigns is a great way to reduce the amount of “heavy lifting” you need to do and allow you to be exponentially more effective in managing your brokerage. Here are some ways you can use automation to amplify your campaigns:
Automate With Workflows
If you have a series of messages that go out to online leads, or a nurturing series of messages you are using to nurture qualified leads, setting them up in an automated campaign is a great way to ensure you not only save time from having to send one-off messages but also ensuring nothing slips through the cracks.
The key to successfully deploying automation in your marketing strategies is making it look to the consumer like you are not using automation. For that reason, we suggest the following best practices:
- Anytime a lead or client responds to an automated touch, make sure you get an instant email or text notification so you can personally follow up with them
- Utilize as many channels (e.g. phone, SMS and email) so you have the highest probability of engaging your new lead
- Once a lead or client has responded to an automated marketing sequence, set your platform so it removes the person from that sequence and moves them into the next stage of your pipeline
Use Lead Assignment Tools
One of the most common ways mortgage brokers can use lead automation is to simplify the process of assigning the leads that come into their team. This helps free you up of the task of having to manually assign leads. It also ensures that leads will be quickly assigned for follow up, making sure that your team is reaching out to the lead when they are in the right frame of mind and most likely to want to engage in a conversation.
There are all types of strategies you can use to decide how you want to assign the leads coming into your brokerage. Here are a couple of common scenarios you might consider:
- If you have multiple brokerage locations or have team members focused on particular marketplaces, assign incoming leads based on where the lead lives
- If you have team members that specialize in particular types of loans or programs, assign leads based on the lead’s need
Calls And Texts Are Valuable Channels To Close More Loans
At the end of the day, the mortgage process is a personal one. In order for people to do business with you and your brokerage, they need to know, like and trust you. Properly utilized, phone calls and text messages will work as valuable tools that will allow you to build rapport with leads more effectively and close more loans.