Impatience – Do it as fast as you can, and let them know you are working on it now.
The faster you can make the process the better. This can be in terms of making the time you are spending with your client effective and not wasting their time, the delay between getting an application and submitting it, as well as the speed at which you can get their loan approved and settled by avoiding mistakes and rework. If people wanted to put a lot of time into getting their home loan, they would do it all themselves.
Clients don’t want you in their home for an hour or more, so you need to collect as much information as you can before the meeting so you come fully prepared and able to get through the boring stuff quickly.
As well as the speed at which you organise things at the appointment, impatience also comes into play as people wait for you and updates on their
loan. When the loan is underway, you can be sure your clients are waiting to hear from you and want an answer yesterday
We have all had the experience of clients who take a long time and much chasing up before they eventually send their paperwork to us. And when they do finally get around to it, they then keep calling and wondering why their loan isn’t immediately approved. Impatience is always reserved for others, rarely for themselves.
As I was writing this very section I received a phone call from the designer of my web site. He is working to move it over to a different hosting provider as we are seeing very slow website performance from our current hosting (and we all know how patient people are when waiting for a slow website to load!).
He had said yesterday he would be calling me with an update on the process of setting up the new hosting, which he just did – to let me know he hadn’t heard back from the hosting company as he was expecting and was chasing them up.
So he had no update for me other than letting me know he was working on it.
He was in a situation that Brokers find themselves in every day – chasing up banks and trying to get answers on their deals. His call to me told me he hadn’t forgotten about me and that he was on top of the problem and working on it. In fact, what it makes me feel is grateful that I’m not doing the running around, that he is doing it for me.
Sure, it didn’t give me the final answer I wanted, but I know that he isn’t the bottleneck, which is what your clients will start thinking the longer they haven’t heard from you.
I needed to get a photo of myself done for a particular project. I looked for a nearby photography place to minimise my travel time. Having a look at their website told me they could do the sort of photo I was looking for. I called and got an answering machine. I left a message and waited. After a day of not hearing from them I called another photography place that was a further five minutes’ drive away and booked myself in. Later I was called back from the first photography company, but by now I was already proceeding with the second one.
The same is exactly true for us as Brokers. I have done a lot of online lead generation over the years where clients came through our website, completed an online inquiry form and the lead was distributed immediately and directly via SMS and email to the geographically closest Broker that I was working with. We used SMS as well as email to accelerate the response times of the Broker.
What we found across thousands of online leads handled by dozens of different Brokers over several years was that the single biggest factor in converting them to appointments was the time taken to call them back. Wherever possible I will always call a client back immediately when I get a lead and the speed of response is almost always well received and sets the tone for my level of service.
I had a couple of Brokers with me at the time had worked for a Big 4 Bank for many years before becoming Brokers. They felt that calling online leads within 24 hours was an acceptable response time — and they wondered why they were doing so poorly with them. By the time they had called the client had no doubt gone to another website and found someone else. Unfortunately, the service they provided clients when they were bank employees doesn’t translate so well to when you are running your own small business. They needed to measure their call back times not in hours, but minutes.