Choice Aggregation Services says it has experienced giant growth this year, increasing its settlement volumes by 128% in the year to September 2014, while also growing its loan book at 1.4 times system growth and increasing their broker membership by 20%.
Choice Aggregation chief Stephen Moore told Australian Broker
that the key driver of growth comes down to the support model they provide.
“In our annual member satisfaction survey, we scored 85%. Members were noting the relationship that we have with them – the professionalism and integrity that we have – but most of all it was the support that we provide them. We ranked into the nineties on support.
“Our proposition, first and foremost, is to spend the time to truly understand each individual’s business needs, so we can then be in a position to provide them with not only the right advice about their business, but tailor up support specifically to suit their needs. That is the core of what we do and I would argue our key differentiator. It is the delivery of that tailored support that members absolutely value and that has driven our growth.”
The proof is in the pudding, according to Moore, who said that majority of their business growth has come from existing members growing their businesses – rather than just acquiring more brokers as members.
“We’ve moved beyond getting all our foundations right to actively helping members to recruit more loan writers and grow their businesses,” Moore said. “Now, we are focussed on getting out there and proactively sharing the good news and letting our brokers know what we can provide.”
The past year has been characterised by a fiercely competitive and heated housing market, but as recent figures suggest the property market may be cooling, Moore doesn’t believe a broker’s business has to cool too.
“We do an annual members survey and one of the questions asked is around their expectations for their business in the next 12 months and this year, which I was very pleasantly surprised by, was there was no negative responses. Not one individual believes their business would be worse in the next 12 months.
“Brokers are absolutely focussed on business growth. There are things we control and things we can’t, and we can’t control the market conditions, but what we do know is irrespective of the conditions, good businesses continue to do well if they want to.
“Given the expectations for the market, brokers want more support when it comes to marketing their business and Choice will be committed to providing that. This includes from a content perspective, to local marketing to ramp up their local presence, to better use for their CRM system and marketing to their existing clients.”
Looking at the year ahead, Moore says the aggregator has plans to invest in digital and social media and continuing education.
“In our commitment to focus on marketing, a key focus is to help members with their digital and social media presence. That is an area that has had an increasing demand from brokers. There are two key areas that our brokers are saying are important: one is around content development and the second is around best practice advice – as they increase their digital presence in social media, how can they ensure they are doing so in a way that will add revenue to their business and not just costs.
“Peer-to-peer learning programs will also remain a key plank in our offer going forward – where we bring together individuals based on specific topics to then share experience and learn from each other. The reason why we do that is we can be very specific based on an individual’s needs and they are learning from an expert who is living and breathing it,” he told Australian Broker