Just because other LOs are doing it… doesn’t mean it’s working.
It’s actually the opposite.
If other LOs are doing it… you should probably stop.
The top 5% of Realtors are the ones doing all the business right now.
And, they’re also the ones who don’t want to be marketed to.
Marketing to the top 5% of Realtors should be done with caution. These people know how the game is played and they only do business with those who also know how to play it. This is why I caution those marketing to the top 5%… Once you have their attention… you better look like someone they do business with.
I learned this lesson the hard way. In 2014, I thought that marketing to the top 5% would eventually win them over… It didn’t. All of my referrals came from the bottom 95%. Which was frustrating, because I knew that I was better than those they were currently sending business to. I also knew that landing just two referral partners in the top 5% would double my business.
In 2016, I felt like quitting. I was busting my ass in every way possible. Sure, I was #2 in the county, but I was doing a bunch of stuff that I hated doing in order to get there. Cold calling, coffee meetings, spammy emails, and randomly dropping into their offices with cookies. If I took my foot off the gas for even a month, I would see a decrease in referrals.
I hated it. I wanted people to choose me because they valued what I did, not because I was the last guy to buy them coffee. So, I decided to quit. I stopped all of the marketing crap that I hated and decided that I was just going to be myself.
That next week, I went to the driving range after lunch to hit some golf balls. I saw 3 of the top referral sources in town there getting ready to tee off. I waved at them and then carried on.
The next day, I went to the driving range again at the same time. I saw all 3 of them there again getting ready to tee off. But, this time, one of them waved me over and asked if I wanted to join them. Obviously, I accepted the offer and joined them on the back nine.
When we finished, they asked me if I planned on being there again tomorrow at the same time. I said yes, and explained that I had built a solid team to run the business without me. This was the ticket and I didn’t even know it. I was, “one of them.”
The following week, our referral numbers doubled. Two months later, our pipeline was 4X the highest we had ever seen.
People do business with people who they believe are like them.
The top 5% of referral partners “get it.” And, they want to send their clients to another entrepreneur who “gets it.”
When I would market myself to them in the traditional ways that we all learn, they would ignore me. They categorized me as “average.” I was just another person trying to tell them how good I was and how much I can help their clients. I was another person trying to “add value to them.”
This whole “adding value” thing may have worked once… but, now everyone is doing it. The top 5% are to the point where they are sick of people trying to “add value” to them. The top 5% are getting the value they need from coaches, mentors, and conferences. They aren’t looking for a random Loan Officer to help them.
The truth is that the top 50 Loan Officers in your market are pretty good at closing loans. The top 5% of Realtors know this. So, when they are deciding who they are going to choose, it really has nothing to do with your loan products or closing abilities.
They want to know… “Are you one of us?”
Status is important to all of us. We want to protect our status at all costs. Whether your status is Democrat, Republican, wealthy, humble, hipster, fashionable, family-oriented, generous… Whatever your preferred status is, people like to support those who are part of the same status.
When I was on the golf course every day at 9 am, it sent the message that I was:
- In control of my time
- Had a team that enjoyed working for me
- Understood the game of business and knew how to play it
- And, I was a golfer
For referral partners in the same status, I was now “one of them.”
2016 taught me a valuable lesson about marketing.
Rather than marketing random acts of value… Market someone that they want to work with instead.
Too many Loan Officers… look like Loan Officers.
Their marketing efforts fail because they aren’t doing the one thing that works best…
Show them who you are and who you are working hard to become.
In a world where people are numb to being marketed to, who you are is the only thing that they are interested in.