If you’re a mortgage lender looking to expand your business prospects, you may want to build your personal brand.
A compelling personal brand and the right mortgage lending tools can help you attract more business now and in the future. In turn, you can give your mortgage lending business the boost it needs to sustain consistent growth.
Below, we’ll offer eight tips for building your personal brand and explain why authenticity is so important. We’ll also highlight several solutions that can enhance your efforts.
What is a Personal Brand?
The term “personal brand” may sound strange at first. Branding is something that has been historically reserved for companies and product lines. However, in the age of social media, anyone with a social media presence can develop a brand.
Your personal brand is essentially your reputation online and in person. It goes far beyond your affiliation with a specific mortgage brokerage or industry. Instead, it’s anchored in your uniqueness and authenticity.
So, why should you care about personal branding? As a mortgage lender, you can use your personal brand to supercharge your business. The more you expand and engage your online network of co-workers, family, and friends, the more likely you’ll be to attract new clients along the way.
8 Tips For Building a Personal Brand as a Mortgage Lender
Now that you understand the basics of personal branding, let’s take a look at eight tactics for getting yours off the ground. As well as, how you can support your brand with a consistent, optimized customer experience and workflow using innovative mortgage lending technology.
#1 Define Your “Why”
The first step to creating a personal brand is clarifying your reasons for doing so. As we mentioned earlier, an engaging personal brand may help you attract more leads for your mortgage lending business.
However, your “why” can go beyond this aim. Maybe you are passionate about helping young people navigate the homebuying process. Or maybe you want to enhance financial literacy in underserved communities. When you have a purpose that you’re passionate about, you can orient your personal branding accordingly.
Defining your “why” is often easier when you have a partner in the industry to bounce ideas off of. We recommend looking at the educational resources your vendors provide and evaluating how they can help you best serve your target audience. Your partner should be able to help you develop content to educate your audience on the mortgage-related topics you’re most passionate about. They should also be willing/able to assist with seminars that educate your borrowers about improving their credit, the homebuying process, etc.
#2 Be Authentic
You may assume that building your personal brand requires you to create a hyper-professional persona online. This couldn’t be further from the truth. A personal brand that’s overly curated will come off as inauthentic.
As the author, Simon Sinek, put it, “To be authentic is to be at peace with your imperfections.” In turn, you don’t need to be perfect and polished at all times. Instead, you simply need to be yourself.
Why is Authenticity So Important?
These days, people associate authenticity with credibility, especially Millennials and Gen Zs.[i] These two younger generations currently make up the fastest-growing group of homebuyers.[ii] If you want to win over their trust (and future business), you need to be authentic.
Here are three key components of authenticity:
- Transparency – To be transparent, you just need to be real about your journey. Maybe it took you a few years before you found your stride in the mortgage industry. Or maybe you faced unique hardships early on in your career. Being transparent about your story will make you more relatable and provide your audience with helpful insights if they ever find themselves in similar situations.
- Vulnerability – Another aspect of authenticity is vulnerability. Sharing your insecurities or struggles on occasion can break down the barriers between you and your audience, enhancing the relatability of your personal brand. While you can certainly maintain reasonable personal and professional boundaries online, a little vulnerability can go a long way.
- Integrity – Having integrity means that you live in alignment with your values, you’re honest with others, and you follow through on your word. Embodying integrity is essential if you want to gain and maintain your audience’s long-term trust.
#3 Use Your Uniqueness to Differentiate Your Personal Brand
Many companies funnel a lot of time, money, and energy into differentiating themselves from the competition. Fortunately, you don’t have to go through this grueling process. The only thing you need to do to differentiate your personal brand is to let your uniqueness shine through. By being yourself, the people who resonate with your values, personality, and messaging will naturally stick around.
When you have the right mortgage lending tools, you can also craft a customer experience that’s tailored to your audience and their unique needs. In turn, you can align your workflows with your overarching message.
For instance, at Certified Credit, we offer several credit score improvement tools. These tools can help you pinpoint the best path forward for your borrowers who are on the cusp of creditworthiness so they can qualify with you in the near future. By offering your new applicants this level of individualized support, they’ll be much more likely to choose you as their lender and exhibit long-lasting customer loyalty.
#4 Share Fresh Content Consistently
While your personal brand doesn’t have to be put on or contrived, you still have to curate it consistently. At the very least, you should post fresh content on a semi-regular schedule.
You can also build your brand by collaborating with other content creators, whether you want to be a guest on another mortgage professional’s podcast or write an expert analysis for a well-known publishing platform. It doesn’t matter what specific steps you take, as long as you just keep showing up.
Being consistent in your personal branding endeavors is easier when you have automated mortgage processes working on your behalf behind the scenes. One useful tool that can save you time and enhance your efficiency is Cascade Leads. This automated marketing tool can help you generate targeted marketing campaigns so you can attract more high-quality leads who match your eligibility criteria. It also allows you to customize your messaging for various segments of your target market.
#5 Don’t Let Perfect Be the Enemy of Good
When you start putting out content, you may feel self-conscious at first. Rest assured that everyone goes through this stage. Personal branding can come with a learning curve, but you have to start somewhere. The more you practice, the better you’ll get.
In the meantime, don’t let your desire to be perfect paralyze you from making progress. Just be proud of who you are and trust that you have value to add to the conversation.
#6 Find Creative Ways to Be Engaging
These days, we live in a competitive attention economy. In turn, you need to find effective ways to win over and maintain the attention of your audience. You can do so by:
- Sharing interesting insights on social media
- Filming funny or “edutaining” reels on TikTok or Instagram
- Writing thought-provoking articles on LinkedIn
- Creating a weekly podcast about current events
You may find that one form of content comes more naturally to you than another. You may also begin to notice trends in terms of how each type of content performs with your audience. Over time, you can use these insights to hone your personal branding strategy and maximize your reach and engagement.
As your audience grows, you can send interested mortgage applicants to your website so they can find out if they meet your lending criteria. When you have an automated prequalification tool, like Cascade Prequal, this process is a breeze. Cascade Prequal can help you and your new applicants find out if they meet your requirements without harming their credit scores.
To use Cascade Prequel, you simply set your credit thresholds and select your preferred soft pull credit reports. After that, Cascade Prequal will automatically qualify applicants and show them their loan options, enabling you to move more leads into your sales pipeline quickly and cost-effectively.
#7 Glean Inspiration From Other Content Creators
If you ever come across creative blocks, you can always check out what other people in the mortgage industry are doing online. While you want to be authentic, you don’t need to reinvent the wheel with every post. Instead, you can simply share your unique spin on trending content formats and timely topics.
#8 Prioritize Relationship-Building
On social media, it’s easy to judge your success on the number of likes, comments, and shares you receive. However, the most important metric to focus on is the quality of your relationships.
Building your personal brand can help you forge worthwhile relationships you wouldn’t have otherwise. The more you put yourself out there, the more potential opportunities you can draw in.
When you have strong relationships, your past customers may be more likely to return to you for repeat business. You just need to know when they’re in the market for a new mortgage so you can reach out at the right time. Doing so is easy with Cascade Alerts.
Cascade Alerts is an automated borrower retention tool that can monitor your past and existing customers’ credit reports for mortgage-related inquiries. Once a relevant inquiry is identified, you can receive a notification with the borrower’s contact information and details within 24 hours via text, email, or LOS notification. In turn, you can leverage your strong relationship to obtain their repeat business.
Certified Credit: Transformative Workflow Solutions For Mortgage Lenders
As you can see, your personal brand can transform you from a mortgage lender that borrowers forget about into someone they consider their go-to source for home-buying infotainment. When you have the right solutions supporting your business workflows, you’ll be ready for the new influx of new business that comes your way.
In addition to the tools we’ve discussed so far, we offer many other helpful products and services at Certified Credit, including:
- Automated mortgage manufacturing solutions
- Lead generation tools
- Affordable credit reports
- Flood zone determinations
- Fraud and risk support
- Settlement services
If you’re ready to find out how our team can help you grow your business, you can schedule a credit consultation with us today.
You can also learn more about personal branding by listening to our Talk Data to Me podcast episode with the exceptional brand strategist, Raquel Borras.
[i] CNBC. There’s a generation below millennials and here’s what they want from brands.
[ii] National Association of Realtors Research Group. 2022 Home Buyers and Sellers Generational Trends Report.