Sales Statistics!

I was recently searching the Internet for statistical information regarding successful sales. How much more likely are you to land a transaction when you pick up the phone when the client calls? Or, how does a quick response to an inquiry impact your likelihood of your gaining the sale?

There are a lot of statistics on how to increase sales performance. There are plenty of metrics and data on this topic, especially for those sales people whose job requires them to cold call or respond to a lead driven business.

Harvard University did a study on cold calling and cold emailing. Did you know that Wednesdays and Thursdays are the best days to cold call? Did you know that the most important factor to getting prospects to open your letters for an email campaign is having a snappy subject line?

You can learn all types of sales information online. Sales training resources abound in the form of live training programs, seminars, publications, webinars and programs. However, I can tell you one thing that I KNOW about sales success that does not require a Harvard degree to understand. Answer your phone whenever you can! If you cannot answer your phone, return the call as quickly as possible. The person who connects with the client first has the upper hand in winning the sale. Being available, being responsive, being on top of communication are simple acts and easy to manage. When I read about a negative sales experience, the consumer is usually talking about these exact behaviors; my person didn’t call me back or was unresponsive, or didn’t communicate clearly to me with next steps.

Is this you? If you are in any business that requires direct consumer contact, you are in sales. And being responsive, on top of executing the transaction and communicating effectively, will win you the trust of your clients, their repeat business and their referrals. Regardless of your industry, you don’t need a statistic to tell you what it takes to take care of your customers. Just treat them as you would like to be treated!

** Harvard study reference: http://www.leadresponsemanagement.org/lrm_study

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There Are Many Ways to Evaluate a Mortgage Lender

There are many ways to evaluate a mortgage lender.

I’m a student of the mortgage industry — I read everything I can on the business, whether it’s written for consumers or for industry professionals, and especially if it includes information pertaining to or coming from the CFPB. For those of you who don’t know, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is a regulatory authority that was formed four years ago. It oversees consumer financial products and the organizations that provide them. To learn more about the CFPB and their mission, visit www.cfpb.gov.

I’m always surprised and disappointed when guides to finding a suitable lender are published and focus primarily on rates, points and fees. A home purchase is generally the largest financial transaction in which most consumers will ever engage. I appreciate that cost and fees are a large factor when shopping for a mortgage, but there are many other factors to consider when selecting a lender.

“The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten.” — Benjamin Franklin

In addition to costs, what else should real estate professionals and consumers be seeking from a loan officer/lender?

Do they have a signature line in their email that includes their contact information and their mortgage licensing information? This is required by law.
Is their written communication well-produced, utilizing proper language, punctuation? Is it professionally formatted? Does the communication make sense? Is it helpful?
Did the lender offer or prepare any written details pertaining to the loan, like a spreadsheet or preliminary estimate of costs and fees, and a loan product comparison?
Did the lender explain how a rate lock works?
Was your initial call or email returned promptly?
Is the lender available to work with you when you’re available?
When they offer a pre-approval or pre-qualification, do they require that the consumer submit all pertinent financial documents to review before issuing a letter?
Are they fast to respond when needed?
Do they have a team backing them up?
Do they offer to talk with the seller or listing agent about a specific borrower/offer?

This list could go on forever — mortgage financing is complicated, and it requires the services of a confident and experienced professional to guide the consumer and agent through to the closing. Of course, no matter who you call, you’ll always be able to find someone willing to do the job for less, but making a large financial decision based exclusively on price can lead to a stressful and unhappy experience. Be sure to shop for quality service too, so that your real estate closing will be a celebration instead of an aggravation!

We’re here to help you and your buyers do more, learn more and grow more!

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