HousingWire recently spoke with Verse founder and CEO David Tal about the lead conversion gap and how Verse is helping lenders engage and nurture leads.
HousingWire: What’s causing the gap between sales and marketing?
David Tal: The massive gap between sales and marketing is caused by a number of factors and challenges faced by marketing and sales teams, and the difficulty for either of them to solve it. Here are the five biggest reasons:
- People want to talk to humans, not chatbots. In fact, 86% of people prefer communicating with a human vs. a chatbot. They crave an authentic human connection.
- 89% of consumers prefer to communicate with a business over text, yet only 6% of businesses are leveraging two-way text conversations to communicate with customers. Customers don’t want to be called, as it’s usually inconvenient and is a reason why 87% of people don’t answer the phone call anymore from numbers they don’t know.
- Businesses need to contact leads quickly! Speed-to-lead is everything when it comes to engaging fresh prospects, yet sales teams struggle to engage with prospects quickly since they have so many more tasks in front of them at any given time.
- 40% of leads come in after hours and on weekends, when most sales and marketing teams are not there to respond. That’s a massive waste of opportunity, and leads go to waste with every passing minute and day that passes without speaking to someone.
- Sales and marketing teams fail to nurture prospects long term. Sales reps are busy and usually focused on the new lead that just popped in the funnel. Most make less than two attempts to engage a new prospect before they move on. The fortune is in the follow-up, and it takes 6-8 attempts on average to engage with most prospects.
HW: In a time when lenders are inundated with leads, what should they be most aware of?
DT: Leads today want to communicate on their time and on their terms. We live in a world where people can push a button and get just about anything. Consumers expect immediate engagement and personalized, authentic conversations that help them get the answers they need quickly.
HW: What are the best strategies for lenders when following up a lead?
DT: Speed-to-lead. You have to contact a lead within minutes, or you’ll lose them to the competition. You should automate a first engagement via text so you can always reach out to a new inquiry quickly, around the clock.
Text communication. Getting ahold of leads is tough. You may call them quickly, but that doesn’t mean they’ll answer, because they don’t know who’s calling, and 87% of people aren’t answering phone calls from numbers they don’t know anymore. So use the power of texting to initiate a conversation. You can offer to call them, via text.
We highly recommend using text as an initial way to start a conversation and ask the prospect if they prefer to text or prefer a call. Then, if they prefer a call (which most do not, but some do), when you call them, they’ll know who and why you’re calling, and you’ll have a far more constructive and effective conversation.
HW: How does Verse help lenders with lead conversion and retention?
DT: Verse does it all for you. As new leads flow in, Verse instantly engages all leads via text, 24/7/365 and also offers to call them. Verse also nurtures leads long-term that require multiple follow up attempts, ensuring no leads slip through the cracks.
Once in contact, Verse asks the prospect all the questions you want us to ask, sets appointments for your team and also makes live transfers to your team in real time. From the moment a new lead is created, Verse handles all the engaging, qualifying and nurturing until they are ready to talk to your team, giving your team the leverage to focus on high-intent opportunities instead of chasing them all down with inefficient and incomplete methods.
Verse works with some of the largest lenders in the country, and they are seeing increases of 50-100% full funnel conversion rates. The power of quick engagement, 24/7, relentless nurturing and qualification sets up all teams to succeed far more than they ever imagined.