Quantcast

How to Stop Mortgage Revenue Droughts

Joy Gendusa

The owners and operators of mortgage businesses that I talk to often feel they are at the mercy of outside factors when it comes to generating new business, which is completely understandable given what the housing bubble did to the mortgage industry.  However, when it comes to generating new leads and producing revenue, this really isn’t the case. There are ways to use marketing to consistently bring in fresh leads to your business both in the origination and servicing side. You can guarantee revenue for your business even in the slow times.

The key to this is an integrated and organized marketing plan.

1.   Integration

An integrated marketing plan is one that uses multiple different mediums and strategies to reach a prospect and turn them into a lead. 

For example: You have a direct mail postcard campaign that drives traffic to your website. Then, your optimized website converts that traffic into leads by getting them to fill out a form. Then, that form populates your email database and the lead receives automatic emails from you for the next 6 months. Throughout that time, your sales team places calls to the prospect.

I know this can sound overwhelming, but rest assured it can be done in any business. You just need to dedicate time and resources to your marketing and chip away at it step-by-step. You don’t need to implement everything on day one.  Here is what should be involved in your integrated marketing plan…

How to Integrate:

In order to get a fully integrated marketing plan, you will need the following systems in place:

Lead generation

- For this I suggest direct mail postcards.

- There are other options like television, radio, billboards, letters, and more, but I have found postcards to be the most cost-effective.

Lead reception

- The keys to receiving leads are receptionists (or whoever answers your phones) and your website. This is easy to overlook, so be careful that you don’t.

- Receptionists should have a predetermined way to handle callers and gather their contact information, so you get it every time.

- Your website needs to be optimized for marketing purposes. This means getting people to fill out forms, so you can gather their contact information.

Follow-up 

- You’ll want to go with email for this. There are very affordable services to help you set up a simple email follow system.

- If you have a larger budget, you can have a separate postcard campaign for follow-up, too.

- Phone calls are great for follow-up, depending on your specific situation and capital. 

Again, don’t let this overwhelm you! There is a ton of information available on the web and in books to help you with each and every step on the list. Just pick a section and get to work on it. That is — after you have organized your plan.

2.   Organization

Integration is how you improve the efficacy of your marketing. It makes it work better. Organization is how you improve the efficiency of your marketing plan. It’s no good to raise a whole bunch of leads if you’re spending too much to do it or losing them somewhere along the way. 

I know it may sound like a no-brainer, but it is vital that you plan out exactly how the different aspects of your integrated plan will work together. This exercise also helps you decide what needs to be a part of your integrated plan, as maybe you’ll discover that two mediums are serving the same purpose or conflicting in some way. 

What you want to do is sit down with your marketing staff, if you have one. If not, just sit down. Then, map out exactly how your marketing plan is going to look. Start at lead generation, and work your way all the through to closing the deal. 

Here are some example questions you should ask:

1.   How am I going to generate leads?

2.   How am I going to receive these leads?

3.   Is the method of reception going to instantly let the prospect know they are in the right place?

4.   How am I going to get prospects’ contact information?

5.   How am I going to follow-up with leads?

6.   Is there more than one way I should be following up?

7.   How are my different follow-up methods going to work together?

8.   How often should I contact my leads?

9.   How long will I actively pursue leads?

10. Once someone has closed, do I want to have a separate way to follow up and attempt to sell another product?

Now that you have an organized plan for a complete, integrated marketing program, set to work implementing it. As I mentioned earlier, don’t bite off more than you can chew, but be proactive about implementing as much of the program as you can as quickly as you can. Marketing, after all, is what allows you to keep making money, even during slow seasons.

After a while you will start to see a pattern emerge in your revenue and marketing budget numbers. You spend this much on marketing and your revenue is this much. You pulled back on marketing this month and revenue was down the next month. Seeing this clear correlation will allow you to rest easy during the slow business times, because you know your marketing will produce and you will still make money.

Joy Gendusa is the owner and CEO of PostcardMania, a direct mail marketing firm, which was established in 1998.