Marketing A New Loan Product
by: Linda Brakeall
You told your favorite Realtor about the best new loan in town. You visited her a week later and found that she was indeed using the new loan. With another loan officer. Has that ever happened to you? Your all too understandable, very human response is: "But I told her about that loan!" And you are, shall we say, miffed?
The problem is that you have only told her one time and you expected her to stay told. If telling someone once would do it, would Pepsi be on TV a zillion times every night reminding you that they make cola? I think not.
Psychologists tell us that human beings have to hear the same information at least six times for it to permeate the gray matter. But you don't want to sound like a broken record, do you?
Try this approach: Schedule Monday, Wednesday and Friday visits for two weeks in order to introduce a brand new program. During the first visit you introduce the program just like you do now and stress the name of the program. Loan officers are all too inclined to tell their Realtors that they have a "new product!" You had a new product last month. Chances are that you'll have a new product next month. So use the name!
Visit 2. Explain the specific application: "This would be good for people who....." As a loan officer you are typically more likely to understand how to use this product than your Realtor. You have to spoon-feed this information if you want to be sure that your Realtor knows how to use the loan appropriately. So spell it out! "This would be good for the self employed." "This would be good for people who have large incomes but low down payments."
Visit 3. A story about a happy user: People retain information much better in the form of stories. I hope you personally have a story about a happy user. Or perhaps someone in your office has a story about a happy user. If not ... make one up! Preface a created story with: " For illustration purposes, let's assume we have this darling young couple...."
Visit 4. Stress the buying power with an example: Again, the Realtor needs concrete examples in order to understand how to use your programs. Give them to her: "Using a typical loan available today, your buyers making $30,000 per year could mortgage about XXX. With the A B C LOAN, that same couple could mortgage XXX+++."
Visits one through four were primarily educational in nature. Visits 5 and 6 are closes. This is the time you ask for the business. First the gentle, easy close: Visit 5. Ask about problem buyers. "Who would this program help?"
If that didn't get you a loan, the next visit is a very hard close. But it sounds very gentle and helpful. It goes like this: LO: "Ms. Realtor, have you worked with anyone recently who should have bought a house from you but didn't? In any of those cases, was it because they couldn't afford enough house? They just couldn't afford the 3rd bedroom or the extra bath? Or perhaps you had a buyer who was self-employed and the financing just didn't go together? If it would be at all helpful to you, I'd be happy to sit down with you for a few minutes and go over those files and see if this new ABC loan might help you sell them a house this week! Do you have time to do that now?"
It is important to understand that when you - as a loan officer - see a loan program, you instantly understand the application and uses. You instantly know what kind of buyer would benefit most from such a program. But unless you tell your Realtor out loud, in English, exactly how to use this loan and with whom, she will not appreciate it fully. In turn, you will not get any extra business.
This six step approach
helps the Realtor understand the dynamics of the program, the application
of the program, helps her translate abstract numbers into concrete sales.
And, it may get you a new loan this week!
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