It’s predicted that the second half of 2016 will be good in terms of home sales, home prices, and new construction. As interest rates increase, however, there will be fewer refinances and single family mortgage originations, so competition among consumer direct and retail lenders will be more heated.
This means, mortgage lenders will need to work smarter, investing in mortgage marketing and sales technology to compete and grow.
A new study, Growth in a Changing Mortgage Market, highlights a clear shift in technology investment strategy among lenders of all sizes and types. The study found that compliance has given way as the top priority to growth and productivity, as lenders scramble to gain market.
The good news, whether you are a retail lender or a consumer direct lender, there is opportunity. But both channels, need to take a hard look at their marketing and sales strategies to determine how to maximize their opportunity in a growing purchase market. The lenders that invest to meet changing borrower expectations will lead the way. Here are our top recommendations:
Consumer Direct Are Good at the Hustle
Consumer direct lenders are good at fast and persistent follow up, but could use a few tips from their retail counterparts on managing a more complex sales process.
1. Closing a new home loan can be a much longer process than a refinance transaction, but the return is higher. So consider creating a career track for refinance loan officers, putting your more experienced loan officers on your purchase market business.
2. Consider beefing up your tech stack with referral management, mortgage marketing automation, and presentation solutions to round out some of the solutions your loan officers are already using.
3. Find ways to stay in touch with purchase customers over time with educational content, and be ready to move quickly when they find a home.
4. Be prepared for a more consultative sales process. First time borrowers may be comfortable initiating a purchase online, but will want a more personalized experience as they get deeper into the process.
Retail Lenders Are Good at Relationships
Retail lenders have developed referral relationships that are enviable. However, retail lenders could take a few tips from the consumer direct channel on how to work more efficiently, leveraging technology.
1. As borrowers spend more time online, they know answers are a click away. So when they show interest, make sure you follow up – immediately.
2. Don’t let those hot leads go cold, leverage technology that will help you ensure leads, especially referral partner leads, are prioritized, nurtured, and reprioritized systematically.
3. Transparency is key with borrowers and referral partners. Find tools to help you automate and manage their experience with you through online channels.
4. Automate routine tasks so you can focus more of your time on selling.
5. Automate long-term marketing strategies for borrowers who may not be ready to buy just yet, and clients that you may be able to cross sell to in the future.
6. Utilize loan scenario visualization tools to accelerate the sales process.
Winning in today’s mortgage market isn’t about working harder, but about working smarter. It’s the lenders and loan officers that embrace technology that will lead the way.
For more insights on how to maximize your opportunity in a growing purchase market download: Growth in a Changing Mortgage Market.About the author: Chris Backe is the director of financial services at Velocify, and a sales automation expert with more than 20 years of experience offering technology solutions to multiple industries. Chris has spent the last 10 years in the financial services industry, holding various positions at industry leading technology companies including Ellie Mae and Salesforce. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.