According to the recent trail book opinion survey conducted by Momentum Intelligence, 60 per cent of brokers considered advertising and marketing as the main contributor to business growth.
This was followed by increasing support staff members at 32 per cent, training/education in additional revenue streams tied with new technologies at 29 per cent, and was followed by increasing the number of brokers in the business at 24 per cent.
These results are consistent with the shift in broker’s awareness that a trail book sale can done in part or as a whole. Once brokers realise that they can use their trail book at any stage of their business as a ‘self-funded’ cash injection to facilitate growth, it significantly changes the landscape of what can be achieved – which previously may have been deemed unattainable due to the hurdles associated with obtaining financing from traditional sources.
So how can the advertising and marketing cash be best spent?
It’s well accepted that advertising and marketing dollars are required to expand market presence, extend customer reach, increase sales and facilitate growth. “The challenge is working out your genuine point of difference – as without this, money can be quickly spent with little return. Most companies are very quick to jump into tactics and get very caught up with specific channels. At the moment, that’s social media – but before investing in any channel, it’s beneficial to take a step back to make sure you have a complete understanding of what your market wants, how you can fulfil this demand and what your unique selling proposition is to ensure your investment achieves maximum results,” said Sascha Moore, financial services marketing specialist.
Brokers may consider selling part of their trail book who have been in business for three to four years. This means they’ve usually got a fairly good grasp on what they do well, and what their market is. Here are our top tips to make the most of your advertising and marketing dollars at this stage:
1) Drill down on your market: you probably will know most of this offhand, but it’s a valuable exercise to take a really good look at your transactions. In particular the location (postcode), loan type and market profile (i.e. sex, age, income, etc). This will give clarity on both who your market actually is, what they’re interested in are and where there’s scope to grow. Keep in mind, the more targeted you can be, the more traction you’ll get (read sales).
2) Work out if you’re meeting your market’s demands: take a step back and identify exactly what typically gets your market over the line. What motivates them? What are their pain points?
3) What is your point of difference: work out your point of difference and how this fulfils the market’s demands, motivators and/or pain points. This should be used as the basis of all communications.
4) Keep it really simple: consumers are bombarded. They’ll connect with you more quickly if your message is clear and your offering is tailored to their specific requirements.
5) Perception is reality – make sure the basics are right: make sure you have the fundamentals before investing in any further advertising or marketing activity. To state the obvious, you need a professional logo, website, business card, email address and email signature. Make sure these reflect are truly reflective of your business and identifies your speciality and point of difference.
6) Content before connection: develop content that identifies your market’s demands and how you fulfil them. The quality of this content can’t be overestimated. Anyone can develop words. Not everyone can relate them to their market. And relevant content encourages connection, which helps drives sales.
7) Choose your channels wisely: work out where you can get high levels of exposure to the right audience. This may be through participating in community events, sponsoring a local sports team, and importantly, using social media wisely. Keep in mind that to be truly effective, no channel should be a ‘one show pony’ – meaning, you’ll get greater results if you integrate mediums. Reach out to your market via Facebook, etc, by all means, but make sure your efforts are interactive. This means placing regular posts, joining (and commenting) on relevant social media groups. We also suggest maintaining a high level of personal presence to enhance your marketing efforts, as at the end of the day, marketing is all about engagement. And nothing beats 1:1 interactions.
Nick Young is a results-driven specialist who has more than 20 years’ experience in the mortgage broking industry, and now heads Trail Homes: Australia’s most established and longest serving trail book purchaser.
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