As published in Scotsman Guide's Residential Edition, July 2012.
Effective networking can ensure a continuous stream of opportunities for mortgage brokers and originators, a fact that makes this aspect of the business critically important in any market condition. Despite its importance, many brokers and originators approach networking in conventional ways — falling back on tedious and unproductive marketing channels and techniques.
With that in mind, mortgage professionals should consider a few more creative ways to network and spread the word about their good work. Proper networking sometimes may mean that you don’t even mention your company, and it’s this kind of outside-the-box thinking that may prove most rewarding.
1. Find a cause
To a large extent, there’s no better way to network than to give back to the community around you. Whether you work with a local organization, school system or nonprofit fundraiser, find out what you can do to get involved with your community.
In particular, serving on local or community committees can allow you to utilize your business acumen and foster relationships with other contributors who share similar passions. Being involved in charity and philanthropy is one of the best networking opportunities that originators can find.
2. Take charge
Realtors often are excellent referral sources for brokers and originators — so much so that this group may be inundated with networking opportunities from your competitors. Considering that, it’s become crucial to think differently when it comes to approaching and connecting with Realtors.
Instead of simply attending networking groups for Realtors, determine ways to take the reins and create opportunities for Realtors to come to you. For instance, create an event for Realtors to attend as part of their continuing education. Because Realtors need to keep up with their continuing education to stay certified, this opportunity could be of great interest to many potential connections.
Partnering with a local real estate school may be exactly the networking avenue your business needs — an avenue that’s inexpensive, as well.
3. Pay attention
There may be a wealth of networking opportunities that you’re simply overlooking, some of which are deceptively simple. For instance, when was the last time that you read local and industry papers to see what personnel moves were happening around you? When people move from one place to another, they’re often in the market for a new home, as well.
This tactic certainly applies to business outside the industry, too. For instance, you may notice an announcement about a new local CEO or a new superintendent in your area’s school district. See if you can offer these people assistance by means of a Realtor referral and, while you’re at it, mention your own services, as well.
Networking with this group of people doesn’t necessarily have to be a sales pitch. When it comes to contacting new local figures, businesses and Realtors, consider sending them a bouquet of flowers to congratulate them on their new endeavors. This is a relatively inexpensive way to show that you’re paying attention to your local market and that you genuinely care about that market. However it’s done, you need to be present when these prospects are in need of mortgage products and services.
Chip Poli, CEO of Poli Mortgage Group Inc., has 20 years of broad-based experience in the mortgage and real estate industries.
His expertise includes management of highly successful loan originators and sales teams, real estate sales, recruitment and leadership abilities. Poli Mortgage Group Inc. has more than 100 staff members and writes more than $1 billion in loans annually. Reach Poli at (781) 801-1400. Visit polimortgage.com.