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Mortgage lending is a fast-paced, competitive industry. For mortgage lenders to thrive in this type of sales environment, they need an edge. An automated lead follow-up system can be that edge.
It’s not often that a transformative sales opportunity comes around, and you have a chance to implement it before your competitors. Such is the case with automated lead follow-up. Today, mortgage companies have a chance to implement automated lead follow-up, in many cases before your competitors get wise. So let’s not waste any more time!
Automated lead follow-up, sometimes referred to as automated lead response, is the process of setting up automated communication to leads in response to certain activities or triggers.
There are lots of different types of automated lead follow-up systems for mortgage companies. Have you ever downloaded an online resource, and then received a near-instant email with a link? That’s automated lead follow-up at work. But that’s just one type!
In addition to automated emails, companies can also leverage automated calls and automated texts to follow-up with prospects. If and when your leads call in, you should also consider an inbound lead call response tool.
For a mortgage company, this is about so much more than sending an automated email. After all, research suggests at least a third - and as much as 70% - of emails go unread.
Any company can benefit from automated lead follow-up techniques. Here’s why: automated lead follow-up makes your sales team more efficient, provides a positive brand experience for prospects, and ensures that no leads slip through the cracks. But for some industries, automated lead follow-up can be transformative.
These industries are typically have:
Sound familiar? If you work in a mortgage company, it probably does. (Other familiar examples include auto sales and residential or commercial real estate sales.)
But before we get into how to follow-up with leads, let’s briefly discuss how mortgage companies find their leads. Understanding lead sources is crucial to knowing how to respond to them.
The best mortgage sales reps will meet their clients where they are. The same is true for lead generation. That means serving engaging ads and sales messaging to prospects in the most strategic places or channels and offering them an easy and instant method of contacting you for more information.
According to Zillow, Millennials and Generation Y made up 48% of the home buyers in 2021. These digital natives are searching for their mortgage lenders in one of two places: online or through personal referrals. Smart mortgage lenders generate their best leads through digital advertising, SEO, social media, review sites like Google My Business and Yelp, and their own website. The NextGen study backs this up. 70% of the respondents said Google was their most-used source for financial research. They are using online calculators and other tools to customize their research. Additionally, 75% reported using YouTube regularly, 66% said Facebook, and 61% said Instagram. In addition to these digital sources, friends and family were highly ranked as sources of both education and influence in making this important financial decision.
As you can see, responding to leads calls for a personalized digital response. This is great news, because that is precisely what an automated lead follow-up software solution can do. Now, let’s learn more about the specific benefits of using such a system.
With that in mind, an automated lead follow-up system for a mortgage company should include not only emails, but also phone and text conversations.
In many cases, this automated lead follow-up happens when the lead or shopper submits a form on your website. When that happens, you might send an automatic email. You might also automatically kick off a call or text to the prospect; this is called “form-to-call automation” and “form-to-text automation,” respectively.
These automated follow-ups can come from your company or from an individual member of your team. Depending on the shoppers inquiry and your sales process, you may choose to have the response be more generic or more personal.
As you can probably tell, automated lead follow-up is a broad umbrella with a lot of possible tactics. For the purposes of this post, we’ll focus on some of the most common: automated responses by email, call, and text. That said, as you explore automated lead follow-up systems for your mortgage company, try to align your response style with the inquiry. That way, you’ll work to create a positive experience.
In highly competitive sales environments, automated lead follow-up can provide a true edge. According to a recent J.D. Powers study, the U.S. mortgage industry has gone from record volume in 2021 to a 22-year low in demand for new mortgages. This downturn means that competition for every mortgage dollar is at an all-time high.
Also, the study reported that customers are looking for lenders who are responsive, consistent, and keep them informed throughout the lending process. Unfortunately. customers feel that only 28% of current mortgage lenders successfully deliver this level of customer service. So, you can see how critical automatic and rapid lead response can be to any mortgage sales team.
Benefit #1: Outpace Your Competition
Research suggests that almost 8 out of 10 consumers will purchase from a brand that responds to their inquiry first. In many cases, the sale doesn’t go to the best response, the most detailed response, or even the best price. Most shoppers will buy from the company that is first.
Here at Calldrip, we often say that it’s better to be first than to be perfect.
Automated lead response solutions allow you to follow up almost instantly with leads. It’s hard to be faster than “instant”! That means that automated lead follow-up system gives you a big opportunity to be the first of your competitors to respond.
This is beneficial even if your company doesn’t have the greatest brand awareness and recognition, or the biggest marketing budget. Here’s why: the average lead response time is more than 40 hours. Almost a third of leads never get a response at all.
Unless your competition is also committed to automated, near-instantaneous lead response - which the data shows is unlikely - your automated lead follow-up will help you be first, even if your prospect is researching multiple mortgage companies.
Benefit #2: Increase Your Mortgage Company’s Speed to Lead
While being first is a competitive advantage, the fact is, increasing your speed to lead is important even in all instances!
This is especially true in the mortgage industry, where customers prioritize speed before and after the close.
Research shows that up to 35% of customers in certain segments choose a lender within 3 days after starting their search. Customers want and expect a quick, helpful response.
Benefit #3: Qualify and Convert Leads More Quickly
Your chances of actually connecting with and qualifying a lead are 8 times higher when you respond in the first 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, conversion rates drop by 8X.
Responding quickly gives you a chance to quickly connect with, qualify and prioritize high-value prospects. It also gives you a chance to connect with, learn from, and quickly disqualify prospects that aren’t a good fit. Wouldn’t it be nice to waste less time chasing leads, only to find out they’re not a fit anyway?
In short, rapid lead response enables your mortgage company to quickly connect with and close or disqualify deals, improving your sales velocity.
But a 5-minute lead response time is difficult to achieve without a rapid lead response solution that includes automated lead follow-up.
With the right automated lead follow-up tool, this process can be seamless and extremely low-effort for your sales team. With the right automated lead response tool, the only thing your sales representative will need is the cell phone that’s already in their pocket. Everything else happens behind the scenes, empowering them to quickly connect with and convert those leads.
Benefit #4: Provide an Exceptional Customer Experience
Your prospects want and expect an exceptional customer experience. Studies show that consumers will pay 16% more for a good customer experience. That expectation applies as soon as they express interest in your brand, which is why automated lead follow-up system for your mortgage company is so powerful.
In the mortgage industry, a consistent and positive customer experience is a huge benefit. Customers rated a positive customer experience as more important than getting the best rate.
In the 2021 NextGen Home Buyer Report, only half of the recent home buyers reported a great experience with their loan officer and only 27.9% felt that lenders are trustworthy and reliable. The JD Powers study also found that 67% of mortgage customers are currently interacting with a human sales rep via phone instead of using a self-service online application.
A strong customer experience post-sale can also help boost referrals and we all know how critical referrals are to long-term business success
In summary, an automated lead follow-up system like Calldrip will help you:
Ready to get started? Learn how Calldrip can help you implement an automated lead response system and more for your mortgage company.
We also offer custom chat widgets that instantly engage leads right on your website, automated SME messaging with personalized scripts that can communicate specific product details to a client via text, lead source attribution, and automatic online review requests. All you need is the phone you already have in your pocket!
Calldrip offers customizable digital sales tools developed for real estate industry professionals. These tools include:
Kinsey is a marketing strategist. When she's not working, she enjoys traveling, trying new restaurants, and spending time with loved ones.
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