As frequently as mortgage professionals tend to use the term “CRM,” (customer relationship management) there is little clarity around the idea. If you ask five different professionals to explain what a CRM is and does, you may get five different answers. Even the most fundamental concepts of a CRM, like its purpose, is never entirely clear. When you ask something more complex than that, like the specific features you should be able to expect, you run into even more questions than answers. This is because when we go looking for CRMs, we are looking to solve our own problems – which will never line up perfectly with the problems that everyone else is facing.
It is not enough, then, to pick up any old CRM and call it a day. Mortgage professionals want tools that will track leads, customers, sales, marketing, and service interactions, but all of these concerns are general. To drive revenues, we need to go deeper. We need to think about what our businesses are actually demanding of us.
Better is within reach, fortunately. Before we talk about what may be better than a CRM, we should enumerate all of the challenges and difficulties that CRMs fail to solve. We need to point out their shortcomings in order to figure out what we can do to correct them.
At Insellerate, we have seen how something different – more on that soon – can make all the difference. Our clients at Northpointe Bank’s Consumer Direct Division are doing more than thirty loans per loan officer every single month, much more than the national average, and they credit their success in part to our technology and processes.
Likewise, our clients at JFQ Lending have seen their production increase by more than 3,000% in less than two years. Again, this improvement is because of Insellerate – because of what our tools do that classical CRMs do not do.
These results, coupled with our persistent vision for the mortgage industry, mean that we are comfortable calling our approach bolder – and coining a new name for it altogether: the customer experience platform (or CEP, for short).
Say hello to CEP,
Customer Experience Platform.
When we set out to build Insellerate, we did so with an eye toward enabling our clients to set themselves apart. We were already familiar with the questions they were asking and the goals they were setting: to create interest, to engage leads, and to convert every opportunity. In addition, we knew that the old way of doing things was not going to cut it. There was no way that something as minute as a CRM would yield results much more impressive than it always had.
To work with clients whose goals were more ambitious than average, we needed a more robust system. A CRM may work for a mortgage professional who feels satisfied with the average click-through rate on a PPC ac, 2% according to Wordstream, but we have focused on those who do not feel satisfied with the average click-through rate. We wanted to work with clients who, like ourselves, demanded more.
Let’s talk about what we see as the difference between a CRM and our CEP.
Say that you are scheduling automated voicemails for all of your leads. You determine when the lead is “getting cold,” maybe after thirty days of no-contact, and then make an outbound call. On average, the response rate for this strategy may come out to 1%-3%. That response rate is, as you know, within the average range.
What if you do something else, though? If you collect leads on Facebook, targeting them on there, then you may be able to transform your 2% response rate to a 6% response rate – plus a 20% engagement rate. You can increase your sales figures drastically by resetting your approach. There is no one action that you are going to take that is going to make all the difference, though. At least, you cannot tell definitively which action is going to make all the difference.
That is why you need to measure your behaviors, making tweaks and shifts based on your findings. You will be happy to learn that as well is a differentiating feature between CRMs and our CEP. Let’s go over that next.
It seems like a simple statement, “numbers matter,” but for mortgage professionals who are hoping to push their businesses forward, it is enormous. As conditions change, and the mortgage industry becomes ever more competitive, there is more value to engaging and retaining customers. This is an area, after all, in which the vast majority of mortgage professionals struggle. Although the average customer will take out between 7 and 11 loans over the course of a lifetime, only 19% of those customers end up using the same lender from one to the next. As Outgrow Company has found as well, customers who express that they feel “fully engaged” are 23% more profitable for the companies that serve them.
It is useful for us to ask, then – what causes a customer to feel “fully engaged”? To answer that question, we can look at what customers need. They want to be able to get their loans without any stress. The process should feel easy to them, and there should be minimal wait times. These are things that most mortgage professionals know, but because they are not tracking the right numbers, they are not able to act on what they know.
According to a study out of MIT, callbacks within five minutes are 100 times more effective than callbacks within thirty minutes. Think about what your business would look like if you were 100 times better at converting your leads. It may seem impossible, to act that quickly, but that is because you are thinking about the process in terms of your CRM. Through the Insellerate CEP, you are getting into contact with your leads instantly, without any wait time at all. The CEP will even plug into your website, Zillow, or Lending Tree so that you are gathering all of the leads available to you.
Of equal importance are the statistics that you will find in our in-depth tracking platform: you get valuable, pointed insights as you need them. We call this aspect of our CEP data intelligence. It equips you with the knowledge and understanding you need to cultivate more meaningful, more rewarding customer relationships, even attracting fans to your brand.
Every lead, any way you can get them: that is the standard to which we at Insellerate hold ourselves and to which we are enabling you to hold yourself too. Let’s talk more about how we are doing so.
One of the areas in which CRMs have severely lagged behind mortgage professionals’ needs is mobile. You look at how people communicate with each other today, and it is clear that our smartphones reign supreme. We send texts, we browse websites, and we engage with brands online, through our mobile devices.
Yet, many CRMs do not integrate easily into texting and mobile interactions.
Our CEP is different in that way too. When you need to text a lead, you can do so through the platform, instead of jumping off the platform for a quick (and possibly messy) interaction on a personal phone line. This is a solution to a problem that CRMs have ignored outright.
This is one more aspect of our CEP that emphasizes the experience, not just the relationship. What defines the CEP, for us, is its unified nature. Everything that you need is in one place, accessible to you when you need it. If you are looking to distribute your leads to your loan officers intelligently and make the most of all the talent within your organization, then this is the way to do that. You can also use it to manage your partners, prioritize tasks in your workflow, and handle both your inbound and outbound calls.
That is the point: on our CEP, you are in the middle of one cohesive, smooth-flowing experience. You can also use the platform to deliver content to your customers and partners, ensuring that you are staying on message, that you are nurturing your leads to the best of your ability, and that you are devising relationship strategies because they work, not because they fit into the box that your CRM has imposed upon you.
Josh Friend began his career as a loan officer and soon moved on to open six mortgage call centers. Over the past 21 years, he has grown to manage and train thousands of loan officers, processors, and marketing managers. That experience has helped him market to millions of consumers, with that experience he has dedicated himself to building software for the mortgage industry since 2004. With a keen eye for developing best-in-class sales processes, he leveraged automation & engagement software to build a better loan cycle. Combining the best from both a CRM and lead management system, Josh now enables lenders to achieve higher revenue goals with Insellerate’s award-winning CRM & Engagement Platform.