IN SALES, ESPECIALLY IN THE MORTGAGE BUSINESS, it is important to be empathetic with the customer. With empathy, you can better anticipate issues and prevent them from turning into problems, you can act as a therapist in stressful times to foster trust and you can make the overall process easier because you understand what the customer is going through.
In my latest top producer interview, I had the opportunity to speak with Brandy Whitmire, producing branch manager at HomeBridge Financial Services, where she is serving in the Dallas-Fort Worth area of Texas. During our conversation, Whitmire explained how she always focuses on empathizing with her customers so she can give the best service possible.
She started as a Realtor[R] and after becoming frustrated with the loan officers she worked with, she soon got her mortgage license. She was her own Realtor and loan officer for about 10 years before regulations in 2011 made her choose one--and she chose to become a full-time loan officer.
Since then, Whitmire has catapulted herself to the level of a top producer. In 2015, she produced more than $42 million with 162 units after only closing $18 million with 72 units in 2014.
How was she able to more than double her production in a year? She attributes her success to many best practices and to the people who help her.
With the majority of her clients coming from her database, she says she constantly keeps track of birthdays and loan anniversaries.
"Everyone that I've ever done business with will hear from me at least twice a year," says Whitmire. She believes this valuable and effective practice keeps her top-of-mind with her past customers so that when they are ready to obtain a mortgage again, they will think of her.
She adds that social media has been a huge help in keeping track of and staying visible to clients and referral sources. She makes it a habit to post something almost every day, such as motivational quotes, industry news, evidence of success and, of course, posts about her life away from work.
Because not that many originators use social media as much as Whitmire, I asked her what kind of results has she seen from her active use of the tools?
"Social media, for me, is definitely used more for branding," she says. "Look at Coca-Cola[R]--the billboard isn't actually selling the drink, it's just used to remember the logo." She makes a great point. Just like with staying aware of birthdays and anniversaries...