This challenge has heightened as new business enquiries leave brokers so busy they cannot easily find time to dedicate to existing customers.
It’s completely understandable. In a lot of cases, those customers will automatically return to the broker for obvious reasons: Namely, the customer has a good relationship with the broker, they trust the adviser and know they will do everything to find the best deal.
But even a light-touch approach to managing existing customers will bear fruit over the long-term. This is particularly true for quieter periods, appreciating these times may be rare at the moment.
Why is it beneficial to have a loyal customer base, when a regular flow of new business is coming in the front door?
It’s about trust.
Should the application hit a problem, for whatever reason, it’s more likely an existing customer will understand – due to their long-standing relationship with the broker – and know they’re doing their best to process the application.
It’s also about knowing your customers. Regular contact allows you to understand your customer’s needs throughout their mortgage term and as their own life situation changes.
They could progress from first-time buyer to home mover to remortgagee. Their needs will change at each stage. They will have requirements for other products throughout their borrowing journey too, with protection and insurance being the obvious two.
There are many tools on the market to help brokers manage existing customers. They enable brokers to handle all of their customer’s financial requirements in one place, including the mortgage, protection and insurance products.
These systems can be costly and time consuming, but managing existing customers doesn’t have to be.
It doesn’t have to mean maintaining a complex database. Nor need it be a costly exercise of sending out regular mailings.
Instead, it can be based on a cheaper solution. Using one of the major e-mail suppliers you can automate a contact with your existing customers. One option is to give an update on the mortgage market and your company – whatever feels natural to you and your business. Even sending a straightforward e-mail at renewal can be surprisingly effective.
Or, it could be call reminding your customer that their mortgage product is up for renewal and arranging a follow-up meeting. These days, that could be on Zoom or Teams, but equally could be a simple ‘phone call.
The solution brokers arrive at will depend on their own business requirements, size and budget.
Your existing customers are your most valuable customers. Communicating with them in a simple and effective way will help to protect your business over the long run.