Tahoe Takeaways Part II - The Marketing

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Tahoe Takeaways Part II - the Marketing



     In Part I of my take aways from our annual Lake Tahoe summit, I discussed the market - where it is, and where it's headed.  Another major topic of Tahoe this year was marketing.  Marketing is no small part of what we do, and is actually the single most important thing we can become better at to increase our production, but the means of marketing are a constantly changing animal.  So how to keep up?

Lake Tahoe


     I'd argue (and speakers at Tahoe would agree) that we need a combination approach - new technology combined with old school sales principles.  For lenders, it's important to realize consumers no longer need us to know what the interest rate is today.  For real estate agents, it's equally important to know consumers don't need you to find a home.  But it's just as important to know they need you to find THE home.  And for lenders, there is a NEED for guidance and ensuring people avoid the common pitfalls that cause many a contract to fall out.



     In short, clients need service from someone that knows how to operate in the modern world, and have the communication and sales skills of yesteryear.  When phone calls were returned.  When voicemails weren't full.  When people felt a level of comfort and trust with the people they worked with.



     Let's face it, those tech "disruptors" (who I'd argue that to this point, are mostly pigs wearing too much lipstick and hoping consumers don't catch on) are banking on YOU not providing a service worthy of payment.  That's their only hope, and in recent years, it's been working out in their favor.  We've become accustomed to things like speed-to-contact, drip marketing, and churn-and-burn type marketing that is necessary to keep up with today's pace of business, but also a really easy way to lose sight of basic sales and service principles.  Honestly, if we fight to stay most up to date on the tech and latest marketing funnels, we're going to lose.  Well funded tech firms will destroy us.  But where THEY CAN'T TOUCH us is our market knowledge, experience, and the ability to treat people as individuals, unique and worthy of our attention and customized advice tailored to their situation.  The tech world has no idea how to operate in that manner.



     At Tahoe, 2 of our speakers had the same message when it comes to 'how to be successful', and it's the same message I've shared with my sales team in training - consistency, and discipline.  Think about it - isn't that what gives tech and well-funded disruptors relying on technology their edge?  They use algorithms and computer systems to do things consistently.  It's the same experience again and again.  Calls are on time, to the second, because of computers.  We need to be that good.  AND we need to go above and beyond, being able to handle the curve ball when it comes to us.



     As a lender, that means I need to be able to handle the tough scenario.  The client that needs months of prep, credit clean up, or a complicated product to help meet their goals.  Sure, I want all the 20% down, 800 FICO, on-the-job-for-30-years-with-a-great-salary clients, too, but in that segment of the market, I'm up against the robots (thankfully, I work for a company where we can still win in that market).  In the weird, interest-only bank statement needing client who had a foreclosure 2 years ago?  Ain't no robots in that yard.



     As a real estate agent, you need to be able to show your clients similar value.  Anyone can send them listings.  Not everyone can get to know their needs and seek them out.  Robots aren't out there door knocking on their behalf.  You need to go above any beyond, and do it consistently.  That is the key to success in today's business climate.



     In today's marketing, you also need to be tenacious.  Did you know if you make 6 calls to a lead, you have a 93% chance to contact?  Do you know if you only call once you hve less than a 40% chance?  And I'm sure you know this (but does it affect your behavior?) - if you don't call at all, you have a 0% chance of contact.  So why do so few of us make 6+ calls on a lead?  A blog on sales call reluctance would take on a life of it's own, so I'll leave it at "because we're afraid to call 6+ times", and therefore, we're afraid of success.  



     We were able to see some great real estate and sales minds at Tahoe - Rob Chrisman, Barry Habib, Chris Smith, Jeff Lobb, and David Greenspan all hung out, shared pieces of their skillset and knowledge, and gave away a ton of material on best practices for lead management and conversion.  It all came down to good habits, done consistently, and a business handled with discipline.  That should be your focus in all of your marketing efforts each and every day.


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  1. Eileen Burns 05/02/2018 09:35 AM
Real Estate Industry
Marketing for Cheapskates
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Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

John- thank you for the wonderful job you've done of sharing what you learned in Tahoe!  And yes, the tech disrupters need only to wait for clients to realize that they'll get nothing more from real people so why not cut through the middle man!  Provide what a figure in Cyberville can't and you'll win!

May 01, 2018 01:47 PM #1
Beth Atalay
Cam Realty and Property Management - Clermont, FL
Cam Realty of Clermont FL

Hi John Meussner, today, more than ever, it's so important to build a relationship with our clients. As you said, anyone can send them listings, anyone can open doors an install a sign. We have to show them why we are different. Excellent post!

May 01, 2018 03:27 PM #2
Myrl Jeffcoat
GreatWest Realty - Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent

While robots and artificial intelligence may be a way of the future in many fields, I don't see that occurring anytime soon in real estate sales.

May 01, 2018 04:35 PM #3
Anna Banana Kruchten CRB, CRS 602-380-4886
Phoenix Property Shoppe - Phoenix, AZ
Arizona's Top Banana!

John building long standing, trusting relationships never goes out of style. Lots of good ideas to consider for all of us. Thanks!

May 01, 2018 05:23 PM #4
Kat Palmiotti
Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, kat@thehousekat.com - Monroe, NY
The House Kat

Yes! Our ability to treat people properly, customize our advice based on their specific situations, go above and beyond, be consistent -- are all things we can do that tech tools can not.


May 02, 2018 03:25 AM #5
Andrew Mooers | 207.532.6573
Northern Maine Real Estate-Aroostook County Broker

Local lending where your banker for the mortgage is part of the community I find works best! Not far away online that promise the world and don't, can deliver like the live and local professional. 

May 02, 2018 04:08 AM #6
Amanda S. Davidson
Amanda Davidson Real Estate Group - Alexandria, VA
Alexandria Virginia Homes For Sale

John, I really enjoyed your post and can tell Tahoe had a lot of ideas to offer. Building relationships is priceless. You can't replace that trust. It might take longer but, it's worth it. 

May 02, 2018 05:17 AM #7
Stu Dye
Mortgage Network, Inc. NMLS #2668 - Portland, ME
Senior Loan Officer

Good stuff John, as per usual. I like the idea of Us (local, human LOs) vs. the “Robots” (and their algorithms). 😊

May 02, 2018 06:07 AM #8
James Grant
Asheville, NC

Hello, John Thanks for sharing that was a great post. To Build Relationship is a key to a solid business network. Satisfaction leads to building a healthy relationship that will lead to generating more revenue from a single customer for your business. 

May 02, 2018 07:50 AM #9
Paul McFadden
Paratex - Seattle, WA
Pest Control, Seattle, WA.

Thanks for sharing. I could definitely get excited about marketing if my meetings were always in Tahoe. Just sayin'

May 02, 2018 01:44 PM #10
JoAnn Moore
The Mortgage Market of Delaware - Georgetown, DE
Home Loans in Delaware

Thanks so much for sharing what you learned in your training.  

May 02, 2018 04:01 PM #11
Dorie Dillard CRS GRI ABR
Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.750.6899 - Austin, TX
Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate

Good evening John Meussner ,

It appears you learned a great deal in your annual Lake Tahoe summit. It always good learning what others take aways from their marketing meetings..thank you for sharing.

May 02, 2018 05:44 PM #12
John Wiley
Right Move Real Estate Group- EXP Realty - Fort Myers, FL
Lee County, FL, ECO Broker, GRI, SRES,GREEN,PSA

Great informational share.

I think all of us need to stop and take a good look at how we are different from a robot. What do we offer that a robot can not offer? Then make sure we know what we are talking about and find ways to convey our value proposition to the consumer.

May 03, 2018 12:22 PM #14
Corey Martin
Martin Presence Group - Ruston, LA
Real Estate and Management Solutions

Agreed. Consistency and discipline provide competitive advantage. Think about McDonald's. They sell food so well by making it the same every single time. Thank you for sharing. 

May 03, 2018 04:55 PM #15
Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD
ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors - Camas, WA
REALTORS® in Clark County, WA

It's always about the relationship building followed up with great customer service. Thanks for sharing your take aways from the Tahoe trip. D 

May 04, 2018 07:32 AM #16
Dörte Engel
RE/MAX Leading Edge - Bowie, MD
ABC - Annapolis, Bowie, Crofton & rest of Maryland

Dear John,

Thank you for the summary.

Jul 28, 2018 03:20 PM #17
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