We sat down with one of our Totus subscribers, a privately owned mortgage firm in Texas. They were operating in over 40 states and had approximately 150 loan officers in the field. They were in a pivotal position of growth and were looking for technology to help them scale easily. Their recently hired Marketing Director quickly realized that their current systems were both antiquated and time-consuming. In short, they needed to find a new system that would automate the marketing process and maximize resources both in the corporate office and in the field. Below is the conclusion of our 3-part series on how Totus became that solution. Click for Part 1 and Part 2.
Q: In Part 2, we discussed how important it was to have a good IA (Information Architecture) laid out. How much do you think that added to the success of your launch?
A: It was absolutely critical. When I unveiled the platform and debuted a live demo at our sales event, the materials were laid out in a thoughtful and intuitive way and the loan officers recognized that. I also want to mention that I additionally developed a branded “storefront” or homepage. We had recently rebranded our company and by incorporating that new look and feel, I believe the field was able to recognize it and get excited. The environment immediately felt familiar to them and they wanted to dive in and start using it.
Q: Wow that is great that you got such a positive response. Can you tell us about the results you saw once the platform was launched?
A: I knew going in that, from a Marketing Department perspective I would be saving a lot of time and overhead spending. Since we had built templates that auto-populated our loan officer information, we instantly freed up hours upon hours that our designer was spending on manually creating every piece of collateral for every loan officer. Instead, he could focus on creating new pieces and adding to our library. Additionally, all of my compliance disclosures were built into the backend, so I no longer had to wait for pieces to be approved. That was a huge time savings as well and it gave our compliance department piece of mind that no rogue materials were being circulated.
On top of that, I had built our system to pull all of that auto-populated loan officer information straight from our HR database. This meant that marketing no longer had to keep secondary records of contact information. We were now streamlining from one centralized company database, which instantly made us operate more efficiently.
Q: How did your loan officers respond to the platform after launch?
A: Luckily for me, the majority of feedback I received was extremely positive. Of course, we had some questions about how to navigate the platform, and some loan officers who were hesitant to change, but once they realized how quickly they could generate a personalized, compliance-ready piece of collateral, they were happy. As they got more familiar and learned that they could also use the system in conjunction with CRM data (to send a birthday card, for example) and to automate drip campaigns, they realized the power of the platform. Some of my high producers quickly discovered that they could create a campaign to target existing clients who qualified for refinance and drive additional business within their own database.
Q: I’ll bet that refinance was an exciting discovery, do you have any more examples of how the platform helped drive business?
A: The first that comes to mind is automated campaigns, which really are the meat of your automation platform. We saw great results with our Closed Loan campaign. We set that up so that the system would recognize when a closing date had been entered and automatically add that contact to the campaign. The contact would receive an immediate thank you, then 30 days later after settling into their new home, they’d receive a request for referrals. Our loans officers saw a big uptick in leads and they didn’t even have to think about it.
Another huge business generator was open house flyers. We were able to pull product information directly from our LOS and populate that data directly into our pre-built template. The LO would simply choose the products they wanted to feature, import partner info if they wanted to co-brand, add details about the home and click a button to generate a flyer. It was so easy!
Last but not least, by integrating campaigns with our outside promotions vendor, we were able to create custom communications that included an extra touch and helped our loan officers stand out from the pack.
Q: Thank you so much for walking us through your experience using the platform. Is there anything we haven’t covered? Any advice for someone who might be on the fence?
A: The world really is your oyster when it comes to building out a marketing automation platform. Since it is fully customizable, you can adapt it to the specific needs of your company and your users. I knew that I needed to make the process as simple, and seamless as possible, so I took advantage of features like the single sign-on option, which meant that my users didn't have to remember another set of login credentials. I think the biggest piece of advice I can give to someone considering a marketing automation platform is to just go for it. Yes, it will take time, resource and planning on the front end, but the efficiencies you can gain by adding technology into your processes will far surpass that investment in the long run.
Take a look at A Mortgage Marketer's Journey to Marketing Automation for the first part of this journey.