Taking a Systematic Approach to Marketing
The secret to getting a solid brand presence: building a solid marketing plan
By Ken Taylor, president, Ken Taylor & Associates Inc.
Mortgage brokers often
say they don’t have time to
market themselves. But that’s
like saying, “I don’t have time to be more
Marketing is a cornerstone of a successful mortgage business. But most brokers
and mortgage companies confuse marketing with advertising. Advertising is just
one component of marketing, along with
publicity, event promotion, direct mail and
other activities. Marketing is a way of life.
The real problem many brokers might
have is not lack of time but lack of a marketing system. When you have no marketing system, you end up with a shotgun
approach that extends a lot of effort without delivering measurable results.
By establishing the basics for a marketing plan, however, brokers can produce
results with minimal effort.
One of the best mortgage marketing
fliers I have seen was not about a product; it was about educating prospects and
customers so real estate agents could sell
more homes. After this mortgage professional researched his market, he found this
to be the greatest need — and he followed
a simple, well-conceived plan to create the
best impact in his marketplace.
Consistency in your message, including
its timeframe and look, also is key. Be prepared to send your marketing message regularly and to have your target recognize it
immediately based on its design, color and
Incorporate tech elements
It’s critical to leverage technology by creating a system to make marketing less expensive and less labor-intensive. This starts
with solid customer-relationship-manage-ment (CRM) software.
There are many of these packages available, and some can plug your database into
your e-mail client. A CRM can help you:
■ Send personalized, bulk e-mail: Each of
the messages you send will look like it only
went to that client, with customizable elements for each e-mail.
“Know what your prospects and clients want
and how to use marketing to open the door.
Your marketing should always reflect
your clients’ needs, not yours.”
Establish your audience
Start with the end in mind when you market. Ask yourself who your target audience
members are and what you want them to
remember. How do you want to be known?
This is a key part of formulating a personal
brand, one of marketing’s cornerstones.
It’s also wise to know what your prospects and clients want and how to use
marketing to open the door. Your marketing should always reflect your clients’
needs, not yours.
Great salespeople ask their clients questions and stay informed. Do your clients
want more products? You’ll never know
until you ask.
logo. It’s easy to touch people and carry out
a regular marketing plan through distribution via electronic newsletters, customized
e-mails and Web sites. You don’t need to
spend a lot of money on your look and feel,
but never compromise. These elements are
critical to your identity.
Part of your marketing plan also should
be establishing yourself as an expert in a
particular area. Your expertise can be
lending-related or focused on helping potential referral partners grow their busi-nesses. An expertise can give you a great
foundation and generate a lot of positive
For example, one mortgage professional
identified lending to veterans as his niche.
His father was a veteran, and he had grown
up in a military family. He created a booklet for veterans and separate business cards
that identified him as a specialist on loans
via the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. He also gave seminars on the local
military base and at civic clubs, in addition to teaming with a real estate agent and
marketing jointly. His pipeline increased
by more than 500 percent in six months.
Ken Taylor is president of Ken Taylor & Associates Inc., a training and consulting firm in
Florida. He has written more than a thousand
articles on sales, motivation and leadership.
Taylor is a professional business coach who
works with some of the country’s top loan officers, corporate executives, and NFL and college coaches. He can speak to your company
about sales, marketing, Internet marketing
and leadership. Reach Taylor at ken@coach
kentaylor.com or (904) 280-3060. Visit www.
■ Group similar clients: This helps you
generate letters, e-mails or a related marketing campaign to a specific group.
■ Organize client information: You can
find a client quickly and store personal information. A CRM even can remind you of
birthdates and anniversaries.
■ Set reminders: These can be for your
marketing campaigns and daily tasks.
■ Automate distribution: You can distribute electronic fliers and electronic newsletters from your CRM at any time, any day.
When using this and other tech tools,
remember that prospects and clients
want the most value for their investment.
Through educational marketing you can inform them and create tremendous value.
For example, distributing an electronic
newsletter targeting your market can fill
audience members with helpful ideas.
These can include customized articles on
savings, avoiding identity theft or increasing the value of their home. A newsletter
targeting referral partners such as real estate agents, however, would find a better
focus with sales and marketing ideas that
can help agents increase their income and
deliver better service.
Having and maintaining a successful Web site also is a fundamental part of
modern marketing. A great Web site is a
powerful marketing tool. The best mortgage sites often share a few fundamental
■ Easy navigation: Buttons are simple and
few. Confuse Internet prospects, and they
will go elsewhere quickly.
■ Free offers: You could, for example, offer
a free report for first-time homebuyers about
owning their dream home while building
■ Prominent testimonials: These show
your level of service.
■ Educational articles: Added to your
site regularly, they can keep people coming back.
■ Ability to track traffic: You want to know
who has visited your site and to have a capture mechanism with which you can contact
your visitors. This could be through having
users provide their information to receive
your free report.
Remember: People go online to look
for rates, not companies. Make sure you
recognize this if you want them to stay on
your site. You do not want to sell rates, but
you do want visitors to get an idea of your
company’s competitiveness while attempting to educate future clients.
Another great online-marketing tool is
a blog. This can help educate clients and
establish your expertise. As people link to
your blog and make comments, you will
grow a readership that can turn into loans.
■ ■ ■
It’s wise to approach marketing as a system
with implementation steps. As you complete a task, mark it off and go to the next
one. Create a to-do list for your marketing
projects that you can follow easily.
Ultimately, your goal is to market yourself and your company in some way every
day of your sales career.
Illustration: Dennis Wunsch