Establish Trust, Acquire Clients and Streamline the Lending Process With Mortgage Content Marketing
As you well know, competition in the mortgage world is fierce, with dozens of lenders in the same region offering different rates, distinctive programs and varied levels of customer service. Each of these factors, along with dozens of others, makes it more difficult than ever to acquire clients and process loans. If you feel the truth of this statement all too acutely, it may be time to look into online marketing.
How Can You Benefit From Content Writing?
Digital connectivity has altered everything from how individuals live and work to how they shop and play, so it’s no surprise that it has also altered consumer behavior. Once upon a time, price was the most important factor in the purchase decision. Today, however, 73% of consumers agree that trust and transparency are more important than cost. Another 71% of consumers and 82% of investors said they are more likely to work with or buy from a company if they recognize the brand name. What does this mean for brands today? They must engage, inform, communicate and, most importantly of all, be visible. Mortgage marketing content can help you do each of these things, which will in turn result in increased acquisitions and processed loans.
Which Content Strategies Should You Invest In?
When it comes to online marketing, there are strategies aplenty. So, how do you decide which are right for you? Consider the benefits of the following:
Blog, Blog, Blog
Mortgage lending is one of those topics that is overwhelmingly confusing, daunting and flat out dull for anyone outside of the industry. However, given that a home is the biggest purchase most individuals are likely to make in their lifetimes, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a borrower who doesn’t first try to make sense of the process.
Despite popular belief within the industry, potential borrowers aren’t all that concerned with rates, so if you were thinking of crafting a long, dry blog article about fixed rates and forecasts, save your breath. What should you focus on instead? Take your cues from some of the most shared, liked and viewed mortgage blogs from the past two years:
- Why It’s Okay To Have Student Loan Debt
- Waiting To Save a 20% Down Payment Can Cost Homebuyers
- 4 Facts About Credit Scores Loan Officers Need To Know
- How To Make Homebuying Easier When You’re Self-Employed
- Should You Consider Refinancing With Rising Rates? Yes
The above trending topics are evidence that potential borrowers want to know more about how to prepare to take on a mortgage, what they can do to save money in the long term and how they can simplify the homebuying process. When you address topics such as these via your content writing, you can pop up in search results for popular search queries, position yourself as a thought leader in the industry and establish trust with potential borrowers for when they are ready to take on a mortgage commitment.
A recent video from Google’s Matt Cuts finally confirmed brands’ worst fears: Social signals don’t mean squat for SEO. That said, does that mean brands should stop investing in social media? Absolutely not. There are a few reasons we say this.
First, in terms of search, social still makes a difference. Though it may not directly translate to optimization of your website, a follow-up Searchmetrics‘ whitepaper shows that the correlation between social signals and search position is high. Why? Because though Google may not directly consider social signals as a ranking factor, they can amplify the factors the search giant does consider. For instance, links are hugely important to Google. If a lot of people are liking and sharing your content on social media, there’s a good chance half or more are linking to it.
Second, though Google doesn’t consider social signals when ranking pages, it does rank social media profiles. In fact, if a person were to search for your lending agency directly, your social profiles would likely pop up in the first couple of results.
Third, Bing still gives weight to social profiles. The search engine considers how many people a brand follows, how many followers a brand has and how many social signals a brand generates when ranking.
Finally, and most importantly, social media can help you connect and establish relationships with potential borrowers. That benefit in and of itself is more important than social signals, especially in an industry as complex as mortgage lending. That said, be smart in how you use social media for your mortgage business. Hootsuite shares a few tips:
- Research your audience to determine the best time to post and provide good conversation.
- Relate to your follows. People turn to social media to converse and engage with others, not to be sold to. Share insights, not promotions.
- Find the right tone and stick with it. If you try to be the expert one day then a friend the next, you’ll only confuse your followers.
Clean Up Your Online Presence
It’s not enough to have a website, establish a blog and engage on social media. Review your social profiles, business listings, online reviews and any other online real estate to make sure your branding and information is consistent across the board.
Is your contact information correct across all channels? Is your website messaging consistent with your blog messaging? Is it easy for your potential borrowers to recognize your brand on social media? When reviewing your online properties, you’re looking for three essential concepts: accuracy, consistency and ease of use. If you can nail all three of those, you’re sure to increase engagement.
Boost Your Email Strategy
According to Outbound Engine, email averaged an ROI of $38 for every $1 spent in 2015. That statistic has remained pretty much consistent over the past four years, though some marketers report an ROI of over $70 to $1. Some industries benefit more than others from email marketing. Mortgage is one such industry.
Why does email work? For one, it can be as personal and targeted as you want it to be. If a potential borrower or group of borrowers expresses interest in reducing their debt-to-income ratio so they are in a better position to qualify for a home loan, personalize the content for that particular group to include links to blogs on the best ways to reduce debt and the quickest ways to boost one’s credit score. If an investor expresses interest in investment properties, stock their campaign with information on the best investment property mortgage rates and tips for financing investment properties. This type of personalized content not only shows potential borrowers that you’re paying attention but also highlights that you’re prepared to help them with their unique lending needs.
Email marketing also serves as a way to interact directly with your customer base. Unlike social media or blogging, the efforts of which potential borrowers only see if they happen to stumble across a post, email marketing allows you to reach out to customers. Provide valuable content and your subscribers will actually look forward to your daily, biweekly or weekly newsletters. Even if a subscriber doesn’t have time to read your email on any given day, sending one allows you to stay top of mind for when the topic of mortgage lending does arise.
As someone once said, successful online marketing campaigns don’t just happen by accident. So, what does make a successful content marketing campaign? For starters, you need a strategy. Approximately 62% of all marketers who claim to have a successful content marketing campaign attribute the success to a documented marketing strategy. Additionally, 72% who claim to have seen an improvement in their efforts cite strategy as a major contributor. So, what does a strategy entail? Content Marketing Institute cites the following:
- Purpose and goals (brand awareness, increased engagement, website traffic, lead generation, etc.)
- Thorough understanding of target audience and their goals
- A mission statement, or a brief declaration of content writing vision
Don’t Try To Do It All On Your Own
Developing a working content strategy takes time in and of itself, but bringing that strategy to life requires a time investment most mortgage lenders do not have. If you want help creating a strategy that leads to mortgage acquisitions without taking your time away from pursuing or following up with them, then outsource your online marketing to a team that specializes in strategy, lead generation and, above all, quality content.