It happens all the time. It will keep happening. What you do next makes all the difference in if you’ll last in the mortgage business and get to keep enjoying a great income. Or if you’ll be back in line looking for a regular job. Here’s what to do after your primary loan niche is wiped out by new regulations.
What Do I Do When My Loan Program Is Regulated Out?
It will take a few things to be ready and react to a loan program being regulated out. Firstly plan ahead, assume it will happen eventually. Reach out to your database, re-brand, roll out some fresh marketing and embrace guerrilla tactics to bring in fresh leads quickly.
These changes can really catch companies and independent mortgage professionals by surprise. Especially if you’ve been relying on one type of niche or group of loan programs for most of your business for a few years. We saw it with stated income and no doc loans. Low down payment home loans, the self-employed, and some have been complaining recently that their reverse mortgage businesses have been regulated to death.
You can’t always control the market, but you can control how prepared you are. That’s 100% up to you. It’s good to be a specialist. Yet, relying only on one niche can be dangerous. It’s better to have some diversification so that you can make quick adjustments and will never have to deal with your pipeline being cut off overnight.
Reach Out to Your Database Quickly
Gain trust, improve your position as a trusted go-to advisor and leverage this opportunity to reach out to your entire database. Let them know about these recent or pending changes. Close those that can still fit in, and sell those who waited too long on other options.
If you have pigeonholed yourself in one niche that is going away, reposition your brand fast. If you have specialized in refis and rates are rocketing, you need to appeal to home purchasers. Rebranding, and potentially tweaking your logo, slogan and flow of your funnels and mortgage website is going to be the critical framework to stay relevant and facilitate bringing in more new loan applications.
Roll Out Fresh Marketing for New Loan Options
You won’t be the only one in this position when it happens. Make sure you are the first to launch new marketing campaigns and reach out to consumers and referral partners, ahead of the competition. You may find a windfall in business if borrowers are seeing their loan applications falling apart at other lenders. Be the first one there to pick up the pieces.
Don’t Overlook High Return Keywords
During these transitional moments there will be great opportunities in generating mortgage leads from specific keywords online. If your competition is folding, but consumers are still searching for terms relating to those programs, use that to generate leads cheaper with SEO, Google ads and Facebook. Then sell them on what you can do. Or get out ahead and start bidding on trending keywords and publishing keyword rich content in new niches before your competition gets up to speed.
Add Fresh Contacts to Your Database
If you’ve been heavy in one niche for a long time your CRM is probably heavily weighted with prospects who may not be the best fit for what you are promoting next. Reinvigorate your database by injecting it with new contacts who are a better fit for the years ahead. Buy lists, create new opt-ins, and drive new traffic from Facebook, Google and LinkedIn with new ‘lookalike’ criteria.
Embrace Guerrilla Style Marketing
During these times some companies and loan officers will see their big incomes and deal flow virtually dry up. You can’t afford to stop marketing. When you stop marketing you stop making money. However, you may have to embrace and get comfortable for more guerrilla style marketing methods and mortgage advertising with better and more predictable CPAs. These will prove far more effective before your competition jumps on the bandwagon. Use these options to keep you afloat while you load up your pipeline with new business. You can rely on more passive lead generation and automated methods of nurturing your database once your pipeline is full again.
Get Involved in the Decision Making Process
Someone is pulling the strings. Why shouldn’t you have a stronger role in determining these macro industry changes?
Want to have a say in what regulations effect your loan programs? Consider:
- Being involved with politics and voting at every level
- Becoming a member and leading industry associations with lobbying power
- Helping self-police the business with positive peer pressure so good and valuable programs aren’t abused and accused of being the problem
Lastly, make sure you are consistently setting aside some reserve money for these things so that you are in the best position to handle them next time.