- We want to know if a longer term approach is required
Some clients are not in the right situation for a loan right now, but usually you can guide them as to what they need to do to become ready, which will lead to a loan later on. If the timing isn’t right but you can assist in the future, you want to have a ‘nurturing’ process that holds their hand and gets them to where they need to be. If they want to meet, even though it’s not for a loan right now, that may still be time well spent to get a relationship underway.
For example, if they are a First Home Buyer that may involve advising them on getting a savings account organised and giving them some guidance as to how much savings they will need to be able to buy to the price they are hoping.
The important thing is not to make the mistake of neglecting them after this meeting and just expecting they will remember and be loyal to you months later, which unfortunately many Brokers will do. Between now and then they will see many more lending advertisements which they will be paying attention to. Your chance of losing them to someone who takes the time to hold their hand right up until they are ready for a loan or locks them in with some formal commitment, is high.
Instead you now want to send them down the educational path relevant to them and remain in contact, starting with your substantial first educational item. This is where your marketing systems should be automated to handle the heavy lifting for you. You still want to schedule in a regular phone call to make some human contact and build familiarity and trust person to person. As I’ve said throughout this book, it’s about building a relationship.
When a client isn’t ready right now, that is an opportunity to really help them over time and build that relationship. There will be new questions they will think of and always in the back of their mind is the worry that there might be a faster solution for them outside of you, so you need to get them to bounce what they are thinking of you.
- Understanding them means you can actually make the right recommendations
“The more you engage with customers the clearer things become and the easier it is to determine what you should be doing.” – John Russell
It is very easy when you are working in the same field for a long time to try and shortcut things. One thing you shouldn’t cut corners on is getting the full picture of your client’s situation, and not quickly drawing conclusions. Only by digging deeper into your prospective client’s situation can you make truly informed recommendations with the greatest chance of them actually being right.
At the risk of being labelled a dinosaur, I think this is one of the main limitations of largely automatic or overly streamlined processes to match people to home loans. Despite what our clients might think, they actually don’t know as much as we do about finance and making the right choices in this area. Yes, they understand their situation the best, but we understand home loans better than they do. That is why a collaborative effort is required to get the best result. Certainly, at best, these short-cut approaches can produce only a fleeting transactional relationship.