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By chip poli Founder and CEO Poli Mortgage Group Inc.
Illustration: Dennis Wunsch
The Business of Branding
Building your brand can help you corral more loans
The term “personal branding” may be a phrase you’ve heard a lot in recent years, sometimes being
heralded as an indispensable marketing tool. But what exactly is a “personal
brand” and what makes it important for
mortgage brokers and originators?
Simply put, a personal brand is the
perception that people have of you.
Your goal is to win the hearts, minds and
business of your colleagues and clients.
You want to be the mortgage originator who stands out at the top of the list
when a buyer is shopping for a loan, and
when your real estate colleagues are
ready to point prospective buyers in the
direction of an originator, you want to be
the one who comes to mind.
Consider a few of the benefits of
creating your own brand.
• familiarity: There aren’t many drawbacks to being a “household name.”
The more people who know about
you, the better. Getting your message across will increase your recognition in the industry.
• credibility: Buyers want a name that
they can trust when it comes to securing financing for what may be the most
important purchase of their lives. If
your reputation precedes you, you’ll
project the sense of trustworthiness
that almost every buyer is looking for.
• public image: Building a positive
image that the public recognizes
is all part of the branding package.
personalizing your brand will make you
more memorable in the public eye.
• expertise: You can use your brand
to establish yourself as an expert in
your field, playing up your unique assets. This will help differentiate you
from the competition.
• increased business: Increased recognition and visibility breed business. The more people who associate your brand with their needs, the
more business you’ll attract.
Much of creating a personal brand
hinges on how you market yourself
and how people perceive your marketing message. Obviously, you want
that message to be received positively,
but you also want it to be memorable.
How does a mortgage professional set
about doing that?
Building a brand is a multifaceted
endeavor. If you’re going to succeed in
personalizing your brand, you’ll want to
explore all the pathways to doing so.
More specifically, you’ll want to capitalize on five approaches:
1. exposure: Getting your name and
message out there is essential, and
traditional advertising is just the tip
of the iceberg in this regard. Take
the opportunity to speak publicly
whenever possible. Likewise, don’t
underestimate how significant an
asset the media can be. Try becom-
ing an acknowledged media source;
dispensing your expertise via inter-
views will get your name in print and
out in the public eye.
In particular, consider focusing on the
• Knowledge: Buyers want you to
be an expert. After all, you’re
their conduit to the best mortgage that they can find, and
they should depend on
your expertise. Your command
of the industry must include
not only the financial aspects
of securing a mortgage, but
also the ins and outs of the
market in your area.
• integrity: There’s not enough
that can be said about the importance of integrity in any industry,
but when you consider the enormity of the investment that
homeowners make, a
reputation of integrity is
absolutely vital in the
Integrity encom-passes all of your
business relationships and associations. If there is a
whiff of suspicion
that you might not
be trustworthy or reliable, then your brand, your
image and your business will suffer.
• empathy: Your clients want a partner who is mindful of the fact that
this is an exciting — and potentially
anxiety-inducing — time of their lives.
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chip poli, CEO of poli Mortgage Group Inc., has 20 years of broad-based experience in the mortgage and real estate industries. His expertise includes management of highly successful loan
originators and sales teams, real estate sales, recruitment, and leadership abilities. poli Mortgage
Group Inc. has more than 100 staff members and writes more than $1 billion in loans annually.
reach poli at (781) 801-1400. Visit polimortgage.com.