Though interest rates are set to rise and inflation is set to go up before it’s brought to heel, businesses and individuals will be looking for the absolute best rates to finance their new asset purchases. That means turning to brokers such as yourself.
However, if you’re a new and emerging broker, banks and lenders may turn a blind eye to being on your lending panel. Growth seems like a frustrating prospect – the old “entry-level job available – experience required” Catch-22. How does one gain experience without getting the job first?
Even though it seems like you’re in a double bind, you can achieve growth in your broking business in 2022.
The Good News: People Are Looking For Choice
According to Mortgage Professional Australia, consumers are voting with their feet and they want more choice. Bankers are fast becoming brokers thanks to COVID-19 giving them time to prepare and complete their coursework. It also complies with the best interests duty and allows its customers to have greater freedom of choice.
With fintech and other added efficiencies afforded by automation and technology, brokers can now have lending panels rivaling their enterprise counterparts without the legwork. Brokers can now access many lenders using a sort of “virtual lending panel” using aggregation.
Aggregation is the new way to achieve business growth in broking without spending thousands of hours bogged down in compliance and jumping through regulatory and volume hoops. Aggregation gives you access to many lenders – much like your own lending panel – across consumer and commercial assets or short-term finance so you can expand your broking business.
The hard part is a broker – especially if you’ve come from the big banking world – is that you’re too small and untested for traditional banks or lenders to come to jump on your lending panel.
This gives you ready access to an already established lending panel – full of banks, non-conforming lenders, and even insurance providers – so you can offer the same level of choice to your customers as the big names that can afford to spend big on TV campaigns and billboards on the sides of highways.
Aggregation services often provide professional development and compliance training to meet your best interests. It can also establish consumer credit compliance-ready document acceptance and links to credit bureaux to pre-screen candidates for loans.
Look at your digital marketing
According to Fortunly, 46% of people use digital means to conduct their banking and financial transactions. That means they’ll never walk into a bank branch or lending office to apply for a car loan or mortgage. You can use that to your advantage.
Using a combination of digital marketing techniques such as Search Engine Optimisation, Pay Per Click advertising, social media marketing, and content strategy, your business can get a leg up on the big competition who still think TV campaigns and billboards on the sides of highways will attract more customers than the captive audience of people using their smartphones.
The most successful and savvy financial brokers out there aren’t solely brokers – they are content marketing companies too. By that, they regularly produce authoritative, link-worthy (and link-building) content for a general audience (everyone needs a loan at some point, right?)
They leverage SEO on their pages and use PPC (Google Ads) to bolster their acquisition rates so they’re consistent and optimized for growth. Activity on social media is also a must – social media use is free, but you also have to sink a bit of time and creativity into it to get the best results. If you think that fintech and broking are too “dry” or best suited for LinkedIn – you’re chasing the wrong avenues for growth, which could lead your company into trouble.
Offer value-added services
If you decide to go down the aggregation route, you can use value-added services to differentiate yourself from the competition. Some aggregators can add on a car buying service as a turn-key solution to your clients looking for auto finance. You can access fleet discounts and pass them on to your clients while they attend to work and life commitments. Having a car picked out for them, delivered to their door, and finance sorted all in one transaction is a hard deal to pass up.
Another value-added services your site or firm can add is loan calculators, so clients can make approximate calculations on how much loans will cost them over time.
Another is to use a white-label energy comparison, which could be included into their mortgage application. The white-label energy comparison means that the comparison engine is branded and served from your own website instead of going to a third party, interrupting the process. They can find more cost-effective energy plans ahead of their move, and have power, internet, and gas switched on when moving day arrives.
Can you do a pivot?
The obstacle is the way – and though you may be doing all the right things as a broker, sometimes trying something different is often the right way to go about things. If you are shying away from aggregation, think of it as leveraging the success of other brokers to lift your own brokerage up. Being a model broker helps the industry at large – especially when there is low trust in the finance industry after the 2007 Sub-prime mortgage crisis (known as the Global Financial Crisis in most places!)
If you can pivot your offerings – even if they aren’t completely what you envisioned – it can make a big difference to getting big broking business growth throughout 2022. It’s all about taking calculated risks and reaping massive rewards.
The information contained in this article is general in nature and not a substitute for professional broking advice.