Not a month seems to go by without an industry pundit telling mortgage brokers they have to utilise social media - but no one ever seems to explain how.
However, Emma Lockwood of Lockwood Finance has managed to harness Twitter and Facebook to fantastic results, and said getting started isn’t as difficult as brokers think.
Rather than using social media primarily as a client lead generation tool, Lockwood utilises it to build referral relationships. While her CRM is adequate for generating leads and maintaining contact with existing clients, Lockwood said she primarily uses Facebook to maintain her profile with established referral partners.
“My followers and fans on Facebook are mainly my referral partners. It's a good way to keep myself top of mind with them rather than harassing them for leads. They can see I'm in the office, they can see I'm ahead of changes in the industry,” she said.
Twitter, Lockwood said, is more focused on making new contacts and putting herself in front of businesses and individuals who could become future referrers.
“I try to get agents and buyers' advisers who aren't referral partners, and build a profile with them and use that as a way to set up a meeting with them in the future to build a referral relationship. They're already seen my profile, they've already seen my personality. It's building my profile within the industry,” Lockwood said.
Lockwood encouraged brokers moving into social media to have a strategy. Scattershot updates won’t gain traction, whereas disciplined posting can help develop a following.
“It needs to be systematically approached rather than ad hoc. You need to say, 'I'm going to tweet three times a week and retweet five times'. An ad hoc approach doesn't work.
When I start retweeting or having a conversation on Twitter, I find the amount of followers I have increases exponentially in that week,” Lockwood said.
The concept of social media as a networking tool may still seem foreign to many mortgage brokers, but Lockwood said there is no cause to be intimidated.
“I think people don't understand how easy it is, and once you get started it's super easy to maintain going forward.”