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Talk to existing customers to protect long-term business – McDonald

by: Richard McDonald, marketing manager at Lloyds Banking Group
  • 30/04/2021
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Talk to existing customers to protect long-term business – McDonald
One of brokers’ key challenges is managing their customer base, ensuring that they speak to existing customers either when the product comes to an end or throughout the life of the product term.

 

This has become more difficult, with brokers so busy with new business enquiries and simply not having the time to dedicate to existing customers.

This is completely understandable and in a lot of cases, those existing customers would automatically come back to their current broker for the obvious reasons: they have a relationship with that broker, trust the broker, and know the broker will do whatever they can to find the best deal.

However, a light-touch approach to managing your existing customer base could bear fruit over the long-term, particularly in periods when you may be quieter – appreciating that these times are rare.

 

Building trust

So why is it beneficial to have a loyal customer base, when you have a regular flow of new business coming in the front door?

Well, it goes back to trust. Should the application hit any problems for whatever reason, it is more likely that an existing customer will understand due to their long-standing relationship with you, and understand that you are doing your best for them to process their application.

Furthermore, it allows you to understand your customer’s needs — not just through the life of their mortgage term, but through the life of the customer. Over the course of their potential relationship with you, they may be moving from being a first-time buyer to homemover, to remortgage customer, and their requirements will change at each stage of the process. 

Moreover, they will have requirements for other products through this period, protection and insurance being the obvious ones.

 

Simple solutions

There are clearly very clever, complete customer-centric marketing tools on the market, which will allow you to manage your existing customer base in an effective and efficient manner.

Indeed, such a customer-centric solution would allow you to manage all of your customer’s financial requirements in one place, from the mortgage itself through to protection and insurance as highlighted above.

Although it’s fair to say that these can be quite costly, and also time-consuming if not managed properly.

So let’s be clear, managing your existing customers doesn’t necessarily have to lead to complex databases that you have to maintain. It also doesn’t need to be a costly exercise involving sending regular mailings to your existing customer base.

Indeed, it can involve a cheap email solution using one of the major email suppliers which can automate a contact with your existing customers. Maybe just a regular update on yourselves, the current mortgage market – whatever you feel comfortable with – or just send a manual email at renewal. 

It might even be as simple as phone call to your customer to remind them that their mortgage product is up for renewal, and to arrange a follow up meeting, albeit this is likely to be via Zoom or Teams in the current environment. Or even arrange over the telephone.

In summary, the solution you arrive at will be completely dependent on your own business requirements including size and budget, but your existing customers are your most valuable customers.

Communicating with them in a simple and effective way will allow you to protect your business in the long run.

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