As a loan officer, you know how important realtors are to the success of your mortgage career and business. But if they don’t know who you are, they won’t be able to send business your way. Here are the best ways to make sure realtors know who you are and some ways you can help their clients.
Marketing to Realtors Is About Building Relationships
Before we get into the how, let’s talk briefly about the philosophy behind marketing to real estate agents.
The most important thing to remember is that you’re building real relationships with real people. Remembering that is the only way to cut through all the noise realtors get on a daily basis. The mortgage industry is full of loan officers marketing to realtors and looking to earn their business, so you have to stand out.
You can get realtors’ attention with a few key tactics. First, be consistent: Reach out to real estate agents on a regular basis and in a variety of ways. That way they will always remember who you are and what you do.
Second, make yourself valuable to real estate agents. You can do this by making it easier for them to sell houses and to secure financing for their buyers. Show them how you can help them grow their real estate business, and their loyalty will follow. Be generous with your knowledge and time, giving them a reason to want to recommend you.
Real estate agents are bombarded with marketing from loan officers all offering similar products and interest rates. You’ll stand out from your competition by forging real relationships rather than pushing sales pitches and interest rates. What follows are seven of the most effective ways you can do just that.
1. Email Marketing Is a Good Way to Stay in Touch.
Remember that realtors are getting similar canned messages from several loan officers at any given time. Use technology to stay in touch, but do it in a personalized, thoughtful way.
Instead of sending boring emails with graphs and monologues about the most recent Fed actions, send realtors resources to grow their business. Send them materials they can easily share with their clients. Your content has to be relevant, or nobody will pay attention to what you’re sending.
So what kind of content will grab realtors’ attention? It could be a video about a difficult transaction you saved, or maybe an explanation of the cost of waiting to buy and the value of today’s market. It could also be solutions for getting buyers into homes, sharing about new loan products that help more buyers.
You’ll stand out by sending personalized emails that are full of helpful information realtors can use with their clients. Your goal should be to educate and inform agents so they can help their clients as they go through the process of buying a home. Remember that the purpose of your marketing is to make their job easier.
2. Social Media Marketing Expands Your Reach.
One of the best ways to begin to build relationships with real estate agents in a low-pressure way is to interact with them on social media. Comment, like, and share!
Agents love to see other people promoting their listings and social media content. Once you feel like you’ve established some rapport on social media, you may want to reach out in a private message to introduce yourself. This is simple and costs you nothing.
Another social media idea is to send realtors information about the market or lending solutions that they can use for their own posts. This gives them good content to post across their social media profiles while also giving you more exposure. It might even inspire real estate marketing ideas for them.
Don’t forget to grow your own social media presence as well. Agents rely heavily on referrals and are always looking for ways to expand their network. Building your own social media presence makes the deal sweeter for agents who want to work with you, because they’ll be getting in front of more potential clients.
Social media is one of the top ways to obtain new business. It’s all about widening your reach at every opportunity.
3. Open Houses Let You Meet Realtors Face to Face.
Open houses are a great way to introduce yourself to realtors face to face. Showing up to a weekend open house can make a big statement about your willingness to go the extra mile. But don’t make the mistake of lingering for too long. If this is a cold call, it’s a perfect time for an introduction and some small talk, but save the sales pitch for later.
Open house interactions should be focused on the agent. Ask questions to familiarize yourself with the agent’s typical clients, and take note of how you can specifically help them. If the opportunity presents itself, ask to schedule a follow-up meeting where you can have a one-on-one conversation. If you don’t get an appointment, you may want to ask for permission to send them more information.
Once you have an established relationship with an agent, offering to sit at an open house on the weekend can be a great way to strengthen that relationship and help generate new business.
If an agent has a stale listing or a custom property that needs more creative financing options, being present at open houses is a great strategy to get more face to face time with clients and help get the listing sold.
4. Co-Branded Marketing Makes THEM Look Good.
One of the best ways you can help your real estate agent partners is by making them look good with very little effort on their part.
That means staying in contact with both the realtor and the client throughout the loan process. The APM mobile app lets you co-brand the user’s experience with the real estate agent you’re working with. Realtors love it, and by providing ease for their clients throughout the process, you’ve created a win-win situation.
You may also want to collaborate with the realtor on marketing materials. At APM, we provide a variety of co-branded marketing materials that help make agents look good and attract the right clients. This makes their job easier by offloading some of the marketing efforts that take place when an agent lists a home.
APM’s co-branded marketing experience includes:
- Information to help buyers through the homeownership process. This includes topics like understanding the pre-approval process, tips for self-employed borrowers, understanding the escrow process, adjustable vs. fixed-rate mortgages, and more.
- Affordability and rate breakdowns, such as the cost of waiting and understanding purchasing power.
- Specialty program and product information that can help buyers get into homes, like our Keys on Time program, non-conforming financing solutions, construction lending, and renovation loans!
- Listing flyers with payment breakdowns.
- Marketing pieces about just-listed and just-sold properties.
- And so many more helpful tools for your real estate marketing strategy.
At APM, we’ve made marketing easy by doing the heavy lifting for our realtor partners.
5. Personal Visits Build Relationships.
It never hurts to drop in and say hello to your realtor partners. This personal touch is what builds relationships and goes a long way toward helping realtors like and trust you. Don’t be afraid to keep showing up for realtors. Always ask how you can help make their job easier and what they need from you or their lending partner.
Realtors want to make sure the lender can create strong relationships with their clients. These visits show that you fit the culture and that you can nurture those strong relationships. But be careful not to be a nuisance. Read the room and understand when it’s time to back off.
6. Video and Livestream Let You Collaborate.
Savvy lenders are marketing with real estate agents in new ways—like video, livestreaming, TikTok, and podcasts. Two experts have a pretty big impact because you’re able to build on each other’s credibility. There is no better way to deliver this type of content than video.
Another selling factor for real estate agents is having access to your audience and following. That’s another reason why it’s important to be actively growing your social media platforms at all times. There is a lot of value in having the opportunity to get in front of a new audience.
Real estate agents find value in this type of marketing and in getting exposure to new audiences. So make use of video, whether it’s Facebook, YouTube, a quick TikTok video or Instagram Reel, a podcast, or a livestream.
7. Co-Hosting Events Builds Partnerships.
Another great marketing strategy is to co-host events with your realtor partners. Online or in-person events such as First Time Home Buyer workshops or Veteran Home Buying seminars are a great way to generate referrals for both of you. Not only can you speak to specific target audiences, but you can also generate high-quality warm leads.
Another strategy is partnering up for a community event or charitable cause to support each other’s business and the community where you live. Partner with your agents on client appreciation events, or sponsor broker open houses or listing tours.
You may also want to hold events that directly benefit realtors. This could include sponsoring a continuing education class or providing a real estate training or coaching series.
All these activities directly benefit the realtors you’re working with and will go a long way toward cementing good relationships. Explore and get creative with your agents on which events best fit their business needs.
Marketing to Realtors Is Essential for Success
It’s essential for loan officers to understand the importance of marketing to realtors in a way that grabs their attention and helps them build a relationship with you.
Technology and new mortgage marketing tools may have changed the landscape of marketing. But there’s nothing more important than nurturing relationships with realtors by showing them you care about them, their business, and their clients. A combination of technology and your personal touch can help you do just that.
At APM, we understand that building strong realtor relationships and a diverse referral network are vital to your success. That’s why we’ve put together a full guide with strategies to help you expand and build long-lasting referral partners. Click here to download our full guide!