We have all heard the statement “ It’s all about WHO you know not What You Know” right?
Whether you think that is fair or not really doesn’t matter because it is truly a fact of life. You have to first begin by understanding that agents are people just like you and I. They should never be viewed as adversaries or people to be avoided, but rather people who you want and need to get to know.
STEP 1. WHO
This is probably the most important question of all . Not every agent is the same and not every agent is a good fit for your services. Some “gurus” in our industry , many who have never originated themselves, provide scripts to use when speaking with or setting up meetings with agents.
The problem is that the meeting should actually be a 2 way interview with you asking if they should be working with you and them asking if you would be a good fit for their business.
Here are some criteria.
-Are they mostly a buyers agent or a sellers agent.
– Do they work with mostly move up or first time buyers.
-What is their average transaction size.
-Does their personality match with yours.
– Does their expectations match with yours.
STEP 2.-WHO ARE THEY AND WHAT INTERESTS THEM
These days it’s very easy to learn all about a person before you even meet with them. You can look at their profiles on Facebook and Linked In. Visit their websites and learn about them.
Ask other agents and title companies what they know about this agent. Do as much of this research up front before you even set up a meeting.
You should also take this one step further and try to learn about who they are currently working with as a mortgage lender.
What programs do you offer that they might not.
What are their vulnerabilities.
What services and/or tools are they able to offer their partners vs what you can offer.
What is their current lenders reputation in the business.
STEP 3. WHO CAN CONNECT YOU
This is an often overlooked tactic that you should pay attention to. There are numerous opportunities for you to be connected to a referral source or agent you have identified.
Here are a few:
1.Do you reach out to listing agents on your deals and stay in touch with them?
2.Can a title rep or other professional introduce you?
3.Do you belong to any social or religious group that the person you have identified belong to?
4.Do you know any other agents that are friendly or work with this agent and can introduce you?
5.Can you meet them at a Board Of Realtors event or committee?
If you can get introduced to this person by someone who influences them you are 100% more likely to have a good meeting and outcome than a cold call with an overused script.
STEP 4. KNOW HOW THE CONVERSATION WILL GO BEFORE YOU HAVE IT
Practice the conversation in your mind a few times before you even make the first contact or meeting. What will you say? What will they say?
Take out a sheet of paper and write down the following.
Every benefit and reason they should do business with you.
NOTE– It can not be because you have good rates and give good service because that is expected from every originator.
Every excuse they could provide and every objection they could raise to not do business with you or even have a meeting with you.
Now play out that conversation in your mind. Listen to what they are saying and listen to your responses. Remember that you should be listening 80% of the time and speaking only 20 % of the time.
The problem we all have is the tendency to just spit out all of the reasons to use us before even knowing if the person even needs us. Or even if the reasons we are giving would be a reason for the agent to try us.
You MUST remember that everyone is tuned into WIIFM radio which stands for WHAT’S IN IT FOR ME?
When you approach this as a conversation instead of a sales call you will be way ahead of the game. This is just as much about how they can help you as it is about how you can help them. Isn’t that what a partnership is all about. So let them know you are all about helping them grow their business so you can grow yours together.
Please go back and re-read this entire paragraph. Don’t be the loan officer who just vomits benefits and what you can do and how great you are.
This is about THEM not YOU !!! Let them talk and they will often tell you exactly what you need to know to create the relationship you want.
WHAT WILL YOU BRING TO THIS MEETING?
You should carefully prepare tools to bring. Provide tools that you can offer to help them grow their business. Bring information on you and your expertise. Prepare a list of programs you are an expert in or programs that you have that may be proprietary that solve a problem buyers have like self employed, credit challenged buyers or grants and down payment loans.
But maybe most importantly you should prepare a list of all the testimonials you have received from previous buyers and agents. No one believes anything you say but they will believe what others say about you.
STEP 5. HAVE YOUR FOLLOW UP PLAN IN PLACE BEFORE YOU SPEAK
I can’t stress enough that no one ever gets married on the first date. I know that we would all like to call an agent, have them be eager to meet us, and then after the meeting become their sole go to lender.
Now please wake up from this dream because that is exactly what this is a dream and not reality. Like every relationship you must have multiple exposures and interactions before trust can be established.
You must continue to provide value, often times before you are ever rewarded with a new deal. The key is setting the proper expectations and consistent exposure.
I do this with a monthly newsletter and also with tools that allow me to stay in front of them visually via one to one videos. I also provide value via webinars and seminars to these unconverted agent partners.
But maybe most importantly is the fact the this follow and systems are planned in advance and are very strategic. These follow ups are fun and creative and meant to keep me top of my mind with these people.
The truth is that most of us give up way too fast and generally stop right when we would succeed with just one more touch. Not sure if you have ever heard of the famous classic ACRES OF DIAMONDS but if you haven’t than go Google it because this classic will put everything in perspective for you. It’s so important that I have given it to all of my Top Originator Mastermind members
( http://toporiginatormastermind.com/tos) because it’s a lesson we all need to keep in mind especially when adding new partners to our business.
Now go ahead and write down these 5 steps. Go ahead and identify the agents you want to work with and go after them with a plan. Realize that you one meeting generally won’t be enough.
I would love to hear your success story and you can leave it at www.toporiginatorsecrets.com
Brian Sacks is a nationally-renowned mortgage expert who has career closing of more than 5,924 transactions for more than $1 billion. He has trained, consulted and coached, tens of thousands of loan officers and company owners over the past 31 years on how to close more loans, make more money, and still have a life.
Brian is the host of Top Originator Secrets which can be seen weekly on Mortgage News Network and on his blog. You can get more information and grab your free report on How to Get Agents Chasing You at TopOriginatorSecrets.com and learn more about the Top Originator Mastermind at http://toporiginatormastermind.com/tos