But I’m honest and trustworthy!
“No, it’s not. Your business isn’t different. Nor is anybody else’s.” – Dan Kennedy
The other attempt at differentiation that I often hear is the declaration that “I am the most honest person so my clients trust me.”
Again, it’s my experience that the vast majority of Mortgage Brokers are very honest people just trying to do the best by their clients. Of the specific cases I know of dishonest Brokers, they were forced out of the industry at a financial loss to themselves. The only route to a successful broking business is being honest, both with lenders and clients, which almost all Brokers understand and is how they would naturally act anyway.
Overall, it is very difficult to differentiate yourself by providing better service, giving your client’s ‘better’ loans or being ‘more honest’.
So, what is the difference?
Despite what I have said above, some Brokers are definitely writing a lot more loans than others, so they must have some point of difference that makes clients choose them.
In my opinion it is simply that they have better marketing systems that win the trust of clients more effectively. They may also put more effort into applying these systems, but that is easy to do when you know that they work well.
“A branding program should be designed to differentiate your cow from all the other cattle on the range. Even if all the cattle on the range look pretty much alike.” – Al Ries
Do they provide a better customer service experience than you, get better loans than you or are more honest than you? If that is the case, it is more likely a flow-on effect of having better marketing and therefore more customers. If you have more customers, you have more resources to provide a better customer experience and you are probably a better Broker because you spend more time writing loans and therefore know the latest lender policies and products better. You are probably more honest because you don’t need to consider doing anything untoward to convert every prospect to a client, because you know another client is easy to obtain.
“Sales cures all.” – Mark Cuban
That is why I believe every Broker needs to put such a focus on getting their marketing right. The quality of service your customers will experience will directly improve if you do, resulting in a positive feedback loop of more customers and better service. Focusing on marketing doesn’t take away from the quality of your service, it should improve it and allow you to hand off the low return parts of your business and spend time on the high return parts, such as marketing and looking after your clients.
For myself personally, the more Brokers I work with the better I can serve them because I have a greater critical mass and therefore more resources which in turn creates economies of scale that make it worthwhile investing in systems that will support their businesses.