Mortgage brokers need customers, and while research suggests that the vast majority of leads come from current or previous customers, these alone won’t sustain a business, especially if you wish to grow. That’s why many brokers buy leads from lead generation companies. This may seem like a quick and effective solution, but it has many problems and there are other options.
In particular, many brokers are increasingly looking at how their own website and team can support their online lead generation and deliver new customers. Before we look at how mortgage brokers can generate qualified leads online, we’ll examine some of the problems from buying leads from traditional lead generation companies.
Disadvantages of buying mortgage leads
Whilst buying mortgage leads can appear to offer a swift solution to the problem of finding new clients, just because you receive a list of leads doesn’t mean you should think that you will make sales.
Purchasing leads from a third party comes with a number of inherent problems that you are less likely to face if you generate your own mortgage leads. Amongst the problems are
- Inconsistent quality — lead generation companies often source some or all of their leads from third parties themselves, which can mean that the quality of the leads provided can vary considerably.
- Quantity over quality — you might have a lot of leads, but how good are they? We’ve already noted that the quality can be variable, and the more you have to wade through, the longer it’s going to take you to find and qualify the valuable leads.
- Time-sensitive — when you aren’t controlling your own lead generation it may be difficult to determine how current the leads you have bought are. If you don’t contact them quickly, you may find it difficult to contact them at all, or that you’re too late.
- Cost — buying leads, rather than generating them yourself clearly increases your costs. With no guarantee on quality, you could be throwing your money away.
What’s the alternative?
The alternative to buying mortgage leads is creating your own leads online through a well thought out lead generation strategy. You can do this using your website — either by optimising an existing site or creating a new site — via social platforms, in conjunction with PPC advertising or social media campaigns.
Many of the supposed benefits of buying leads from a lead generation company can also be achieved using your own lead generation system. For example, some companies stress that they can source leads from defined geographical areas or from specific demographics, but this is easily accomplished via a number of lead generation techniques that you can implement yourself.
How to do it
- Identify your ideal customer — If you don’t know what your ‘ideal customer’ looks like you can’t create a lead generation strategy. Who do you provide mortgage broker services for? Are they a particular age? Or income level? Do they have specific occupations? Do they live locally?
- Discover where they look and research — Do they mainly use social media? Which platforms? Do they search on Google? Are they more likely to respond to emails, texts, or phone calls? Knowing where your potential customers are will help you decide how to market to them.
- Find out what they look for — You need to understand what they search for online in order to identify the keywords you need to target. Be discerning. Sure, they may look for ‘how to get a mortgage’, but so do lots of people you’re really not interested in. Drill down.
- Optimise your website — Use your keyword research to update the copy on your website. Use the phrases your customers use so that your site is relevant when they view it.
- Pay for some advertising — Your keywords will also inform your PPC advertising. PPC ads can be easily targeted, allowing you to refine your campaign. As they come with a heap of analytic data, a well-run PPC ad campaign lets you keep tight control of your budget.
- Join up your emails — Think about the types of emails you send out, who to and how often. Use emails to guide potential customers through the lead generation funnel by using their previous interactions with you to determine what you send them, and when.
- Don’t forget the phone — Even when people find your details online, they’ll often still call you. Ensure you have proper tracking software in place, in order to analyse where the best leads come from.
- Automate when you can … — Take mundane tasks away from your skilled brokers by utilisation automation tools. Automating emails, for example, lets this element of lead generation run happily in the background while you get on with the real work.
- … but don’t forget to analyse — Automation saves you time, but you still need to monitor your campaigns. Luckily, the data produced by automation and AI tools ensures that you can see what’s delivering high quality leads, and what isn’t.
Taking control of your own mortgage lead generation online gives you more say over the type, quality, and quantity of leads you are working with. You can ensure that your lead generation strategy is truly integrated into the rest of your commercial and strategic planning. And it will probably save you time and money.
If it seems too daunting to start the journey on your own, or you’d rather concentrate on what you’re good at, you can speak to a professional online mortgage leads marketing agency to help you build your ideal marketing process. When you do though, ensure that they fully understand the needs of your mortgage brokers and particularly your customers.