Many originators are very good at the initial meeting with a prospective HECM borrower. Whether at the kitchen table or over the phone most work well at providing a solid overview of the available program benefits and reviewing numbers. But then what?
Some organizations develop a standard follow-up process for originators, a work-flow process to use in following up on a lead until a prospect is ready to make a buying decision. These types of follow-up plans range from tightly scripted and regimented processes to loose expectations for timely follow-up of active leads.
In a scripted process with a regimented flow, it is difficult to define a workflow that meets the educational and informational needs for all prospects and may limit an originator's ability to guide a prospective borrower through this process in a manner that corresponds with their decision making process. It may meet a general standard that serves the typical prospect and provide a clear mechanism for tracking, but may also be fairly limited.
A loose standard that merely sets expectations for timing of follow-up contacts with a prospect may provide an originator with too little guidance on what is necessary to further the client toward a solid buying decision.
Originators who generate the most consistent success follow a simple rule, always have a specific reason for your call or follow-up. Merely making a touch point with a prospect, just because it is what you are suppose to do, does not guide a prospect another step down the evaluative path. Essentially, each prospect requires a different level of information in order to properly understand how the program works and how the benefits impact them.
A professional sales person has a specific plan for each of their clients, based upon their knowledge of the clients' needs and situation. Each step in the plan has a specific purpose. Before the call is made the originator should review where the prospect is at in their review process, and determine what is needed to move them to the next step, and what information will help them get to that next step.
An originator who does not have a plan for their prospects under serves them by asking questions, such as: "I was just calling to see if you received the information I sent you," or "Do have any questions about the reverse mortgage?"
An originator who has a plan, reviews the situation and is prepared to make specific recommendations to the client about the next steps. This leads to statements, such as: "From our last conversation, I realized that you had additional questions about the growth rate on the line of credit, so I prepared some additional information to help us explore that..." Another example: "After we discussed your financial situation, I did some additional analysis and I would like to demonstrate in more detail how the eliminating your mortgage payments will impact your monthly cash flow."
Ultimately, an originator who has a specific plan for their clients, likely has a better understanding of the clients' needs, and therefore earns the ability to make specific recommendations for how the program may best suit their situation.
Before you make that next call, take a minute to think about, "Why am I calling?"