What's in this article?
Are you a loan officer reading this article because you want to generate more leads, get more referrals, and significantly improve your overall digital marketing strategy?
Did you know that 31% of homeowners conducted mortgage research online first? Around 21% found their mortgage lender through an online search.
Yes, referrals are still important, but when you think about it — your online mortgage marketing strategy is a referral system that works 24/7.
When you’re publishing blogs on mortgages, you’re referring yourself to potential new clients.
Additionally, the COVID-19 pandemic changed everything about the online mortgage application process — people want a streamlined, friendlier way to get their mortgage and they will continue searching online until they find it.
In this guide, I’ll go over our proven mortgage marketing framework to help loan officers improve their web presence, boost website traffic, get referrals, and close deals.
Looking for a quick list ideas?
Be sure to check out our list of 50+ mortgage marketing ideas! Then schedule a discovery session with Kaleidico and have all your marketing questions answered.
Why are mortgage websites so important?
Your website should be your primary lead generator
This is the central hub where your online audience funnels in and fills out a contact form.
When users Google mortgage brokers or mortgage advice, ideally, they’ll land on your website.
Because you’ll be regularly blogging on mortgage advice and mortgage scenarios, for example, “How Do I Get an FHA Home Loan?” or “How to Get My First Mortgage.”
The idea is to use your loan products as keywords in the headlines of your articles, and throughout the copy of your blog post.
In addition to content marketing, you’ll also need to focus on search engine optimization (SEO).
SEO is the practice of using searchable keywords throughout your website’s landing pages and other content that make them easy to find in a Google search.
A no-brainer would be to add a bio page for yourself so that when people Google you, they’ll go straight to your company’s website where they can reach out to you directly.
Be sure to include separate landing pages for each of your loan products to further increase your SEO—a page for FHA loans, Fixed-Rate, VA Loans, etc.
The more keywords your website has, the easier it is for Google to find it.
Be careful not to do the spammy approach, such as typing in the same keywords multiple times on each page. That’s why blogging is so special, it gives you more opportunities to sprinkle these attractive keywords into your site legitimately.
How to promote yourself as a loan officer and build your online presence
Create and optimize a personally branded website
Your website should be the most effective marketing tool you have in the online mortgage space.
All of your blogs and other forms of content will ultimately direct people back to your website, where you can generate leads to follow up on.
Additionally, when your potential clients and referrals actively search for you online, it’s your website that they’ll land on. Once there, you’ll have to impress them with your branded website, or else they’ll bounce off and find somebody more “professional.”
Being active on social media sites, producing consistent blogs, answering questions on forums, or buying PPC ads offers more opportunities to draw people to your website.
Every email address you collect on your website has the potential to convert a cold lead into a warm one, and make it easier to follow up with them in the future.
Develop your niche
Every mortgage loan officer has their own target market or niche. What is your niche?
Perhaps you’re a military veteran. Reach out to a referral network of veterans and families of active-duty soldiers to help them with VA loans.
If you’re a golfer and part of an exclusive country club, why not network with an older and affluent crowd to help plan their retirement?
If you live in a college town, why not specialize in mortgages for first-time buyers or physicians who work at the local university?
Remember, you’re not bound by your specific niche, and you should continue to help all of your customers. But having a niche to market in can give you the competitive edge over other local loan officers, and give you an “in” with the type of audience you’re the most familiar with.
Use social media to grow your social network
People spend on average about 147 minutes, or 2.45 hours every day consuming social media on sites like Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, TikTok, Snapchat, YouTube, etc.
The trick to getting noticed is creating mortgage content that fits each of these platform’s natural strengths, such as:
- Facebook sponsored posts or videos related to mortgages
- Instagram posts using graphics or educational infographics for greater reach
- Twitter updates related to mortgage news or linking to recent blog posts on your website
Do you have to be a master of every social media platform? No, find the platforms you’re the most familiar with and start there.
Some mortgage officers find Facebook is their best platform, while others find LinkedIn more professional and targeted.
Trying to reach a young audience? Invest in a TikTok marketing plan, where there’s less competition.
Share your expertise and be the trusted advisor
Mortgages are really confusing for the average person. That’s why they’re searching online for educational content related to mortgages.
Put your answers and expertise on the internet, and your future customers will find it.
If you build it, they will come.
Maintaining a blog and social media are the obvious choices for sharing your expertise and getting attention online. But have you considered guest blogging on another popular website?
Guest blogging is a form of cross-promotion. You and the guest blogger both get something out of it. It’s a win-win. But it doesn’t have to be blogging either.
Partner up with a local real estate agent on social media and run cross-promotional content. Share their content and ask them to share yours.
You can also answer questions on Q&A sites like Reddit, Quora, and other popular websites with mortgage forums. A well-written answer might take 20 minutes to write, but it can get thousands of views over the years (again, just make sure to link it back to your website).
If you’re so inclined, you can even create a podcast on mortgages and bring in influencers with their own large followings to improve your reach.
Learn copywriting to produce better-written content
Copywriting isn’t that hard, but it ain’t that easy either.
Being a good copywriter requires you to be thoughtful and to always think of your audience. After all, you’re writing for your audience, which means you need to figure out the right tone to resonate with them.
Learn to speak your audience’s language, and maybe brush up on your grammar skills too.
There are tons of helpful copywriting tools out there, like Grammarly, and other online writing assistant apps that can proofread your content to make sure there are no embarrassing grammar mistakes.
Good copywriting is just sales in writing. If you improve your writing skills, you’ll attract more people through engaging content and can improve your profitability.
I can’t stress how much loan officers know about mortgages and how little the average person knows about mortgages, so keep your content relatively simple and explanatory.
Personally, I respond better to conversational articles that simplify the confusing jargon surrounding mortgages.
Don’t feel like your writing needs to be academic or overly impressive, you’ll just confuse your readers. And be sure to use lots of examples and story problems to illustrate your points.
If you’re not sure where to start, look at your competitors’ websites and try to emulate them in your own style.
Create SEO-optimized content for better visibility in Google searches
Google primarily finds answers to search queries by matching keywords on your website with keywords in the user’s search.
The idea is to include lots of these keywords on your site so Google says, “This must be the right place for answers. I’ll show this in the search results.”
Content then would comprise all the written words, videos, and images on your website. Don’t forget about naming your uploaded photos using important keywords. This is how pictures appear in Google image searches.
As I mentioned before, the true trick to adding more SEO content to your website is with blogs or other forms of content, such as:
- Lead magnets, usually free eBooks or downloadable PDFs, “Ultimate Guide to Understanding Mortgage Types”
- Embedded videos that use important keywords in their video titles, “How to Get Your First Mortgage”
- Images that have been renamed with important keywords (mortgages-first-time.jpg)
- Add separate web pages for each of your loan products, Conventional Purchase page, Conventional Refinance page, Mortgage Rates page, etc.
- Writing a bio page that has your name, qualifications, and company name
- Having a home page with a detailed description of your company, your products, and your industry
Create PPC ads for a fast track to Google’s first page of search results
SEO and content marketing are both long-term tactics that will take some time to achieve their optimal result.
This is why many mortgage loan officers use Google Ads to streamline the process.
When you purchase Google Ads, you’re potentially giving yourself the fast track to being listed at the top of Google’s SERP page — however, it will cost you.
To use Google Ads, you’ll need to bid on valuable keywords that people are searching for, so when they search for “mortgages” your ad will appear at the top of the results.
Unsurprisingly, mortgage-related keywords are among the most expensive keywords found on Google.
PPC ads aren’t limited to Google — Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and LinkedIn all have their own paid ad platforms, giving you access to millions of their users and demographic information.
Start a blog to answer mortgage-related questions
Blogging is often the main traffic generator for websites.
But you cannot expect to build a website and have it organically generate a ton of traffic.
You need to constantly be publishing new content for Google’s crawler bots to sift through, sort, and index into their search result catalog.
Blogging has multiple benefits for mortgage websites:
- Improved authority
- Improved ranking
- More traffic generated
- More leads generated
- Better visibility
- Better targeting to reach your audience
Produce videos for an instant connection and increased visibility
Do you know who I want to do business with? Somebody who shows their face and voice and has some personality. Somebody who proves they’re a real human being and not a bot posting information about mortgages.
The quickest way to do this is to post a video of yourself!
Record a short clip introducing yourself and put this on your website, YouTube channel, and other social media pages. You can embed it into your automatic welcome emails once people fill out a form on your website.
Your production value doesn’t have to be spectacular, but it should be adequate. Make sure your camera isn’t smudgy, shaky, or crooked and you’ll be fine.
Mortgage sales, and all sales, are a people-to-people business. If you can show your face and voice to your audience, they’ll feel more comfortable reaching out or talking with you for the first time.
Sometimes posting a quick video on social media is all it takes — a 30-second clip of you explaining something about the mortgage process.
If you really want to fuel your video marketing efforts, try hosting free webinars and see what kinds of leads you attract. Or start creating mortgage how-to videos and posting them to YouTube.
Videos posted to YouTube stay there indefinitely, and if your video is particularly good, it can attract thousands of views. Just make sure to put a good description below your title (using good keywords) and put your contact info so it’s easy for people to reach out after watching your video.
Showcase your reviews to build up trust
Instead of having people go to Yelp or other review sites to get more information about you, post your reviews on your own website. There are a couple of good reasons why you’d want to do this:
- It keeps users on your website longer
- It provides “social proof” that you’ve helped real people and that you can help your prospective borrower too
- When people Google reviews, your website will appear in the search results and they’ll end up clicking on your website anyway
- You have more control over the reviews you show
Once people get to your website, you need to keep them there before they bounce off. Bouncing off just means you land on a website and immediately leave it (usually within 30 seconds).
Everybody needs social proof or else they’ll be scared off before they submit their contact info.
Would you want to submit your contact information to a nameless, faceless website with no proof that it’s a real company? Neither will your web visitors unless you can establish some trust and reliability!
Build a referral engine
Hopefully, at this point, you’ve been able to add tons of highly qualified leads to your CRM.
All you have to do now is produce a steady flow of referral emails, text messages, call reminders, or a mix of all three to produce a simple referral message:
“Do you know anyone that needs help with or has questions about purchasing a new home?”
Your referral ask doesn’t need to be any more complicated or pushy than that. If you’ve already provided exceptional service, then there’s no reason why previous contacts wouldn’t refer you to their friends and family.
Adopt a multi-channel approach to sales
Have you ever noticed how sometimes you email a person and they never respond, but when you text them, you’ll get a response instantly?
This is the power of a multichannel approach to sales. Every person has their preferred contact method and least preferred contact method.
To increase your odds of getting a response, vary your approach to sales, for instance:
- When somebody fills out a contact form on your website, send them an automated SMS message
- Mail out a physical card when a lead gives you their address in a contact form
- After leaving a voicemail, instantly send an email as well saying “I just left a voicemail, but wanted to email you in case this is easier for you.”
Social media marketing for loan officers
Facebook pages are a free way to market your mortgage business and increase your social media presence among potential clients. Over 221 million Americans use Facebook, so you’d be hurting yourself by not forming a page. Why not create one?
If you’ve blogged about mortgages (which you really should be doing) then you can post these blogs as engaging content on your business page.
Or you can share your opinions on the latest mortgage news to become an influencer or thought leader. These kinds of posts can really spread your reach, particularly if they’re shared by numerous people.
Over time, your followers will begin recommending you to their friends and family, further boosting your page likes and your post’s impressions to meet a larger audience.
Once you’re ready for paid advertisements, Facebook Ads manager makes it pretty simple to set up advertising campaigns. You can target people specifically by geographical location, their interests, demographics and income information, and basically any other demographic you want to narrow down.
How to use mortgage email marketing to generate more leads
Past mortgage broker strategies included sending out bulk direct mailers and sitting back and waiting for a week or two until the leads came in.
These days, email marketing is the better route, and I’ll tell you why: It’s so much cheaper, quicker, and gives you way more information about who’s opening them!
When you send out mass emails using these platforms, they’ll show when somebody opens up an email. If you send an email and notice several people have opened it, call those leads right away because you’ve already warmed them up.
This open rate information is also pretty useful because it can let you know which emails are more popular, and unpopular, so you can refine your approach.
If you notice you’re getting traction with certain email headlines or titles, double down on producing more emails like that to ensure more people will open them.
Inside your emails, you can embed video links, send out PDFs, or add links to your website’s new blog posts. Each of these actions is trackable to inform you of your email’s success rate.
Closing a mortgage takes many points of contact between the broker and borrower, and with every email you send, you’re creating more touchpoints.
Maybe your lead filled out a form on your website two months ago and has been getting emails occasionally from you. Several months down the line when they’re finally ready to buy, they’ll remember you and contact you via your emails.
That’s the goal, anyway.
How to set up a successful email drip
Drip campaigns are automated email campaigns used by loan officers to create a consistent flow of emails to your prospective customers over a set period of time.
Drip marketing creates inviting, long-term exposure to your personal brand, and hopefully also provides value to your would-be customers.
Let’s examine a basic drip campaign.
The first email
The first email is your greatest opportunity for establishing a proper relationship with your potential client.
Introduce yourself, and your company, and briefly touch on how your services can benefit your client.
Make sure the first email is simple and concise and not pushy!
A single short paragraph with bullet points and a call-to-action (CTA) is all it takes.
The second email
If you don’t get a response from your first email, don’t worry quite yet — people are busy!
It’s likely they aren’t avoiding you at this point, but they haven’t made it a priority to respond to you either.
Your second email should refer back to your first email a bit more gently and add some additional valuable information such as relevant mortgage data or news.
Again, end with a CTA to encourage them to take the next steps to get a mortgage.
Don’t be afraid to send multiple emails — everyone is accustomed to this at this point, and you probably won’t end up offending your reader.
If they’re still not opening up your emails, vary your approach to send more interesting emails, such as embedding a short video or helpful infographics.
Still not getting them to open up your emails? Perhaps you need to write more interesting subject lines!
The best thing about drip campaigns is your emails will sit in your leads’ inboxes for a long time, keeping the door open for future opportunities months, or even years down the road.
Scheduling your mortgage email marketing campaign
Once your drip campaign has been set up, it will automatically run itself, and begin the process over and over again each time a new lead submits their contact info.
The question you gotta ask yourself is, when do you send the emails?
When to send the emails
Every person you contact has their own unique schedule — some people read emails first thing in the morning, at night, or throughout the day.
Use your CRM to determine the best times that have the highest open rates. Perhaps weekends are when you see the best results?
Check your CRM’s results and adjust accordingly.
The frequency of sending emails
It’s better to start aggressively and then taper off, rather than ramping up emails over a period of time. This makes sense since your potential client is the most interested immediately after filling out their contact info.
Here’s a recommended timeline for sending each of your emails in your drip campaign:
- Your follow-up email should be sent a couple of days after the initial email
- Wait a week to send your third email
- Wait another week to send your fourth email
- Then slow down the frequency to sending one or two emails a month
Stand out with effective email marketing
First, you want to make sure your email isn’t considered spammy or raises any red flags with your client’s email system. This means proofreading and making sure there are no misspellings. Misspellings are one of the easiest indicators of spam or low-quality content.
Next, keep your tone friendly and conversational — there’s no need to intimidate your reader with jargon they won’t understand. Mortgages are complicated enough, you don’t need to confuse them anymore.
Keep your content relevant and timely by sending out updates on new mortgage rates, or helpful advice on how to navigate recent industry mortgage news to educate and inform your audience.
Lastly, don’t forget to send those birthday emails! Remembering birthdays and anniversaries can go a long way to maintaining a human connection with your potential clients.
Content marketing tips for loan officers
Mortgages are complex and difficult to understand. It’s why so many people spend time online researching mortgages before contacting loan officers.
Content marketing, then, is about providing answers to mortgage-related questions online.
Have you noticed how every site explaining mortgages is a mortgage lenders’ website?
It’s because they know if they provide free, helpful content, it creates a foot in the door for prospective clients to fill out a contact form and eventually work with that company.
Most people consider content marketing to be the same as blogging — they’re mostly right, but there are tons of other forms of content you can create to reach your audience.
Before writing your content, you should first understand who you’re writing the content for.
Create buyer cases and user personas
Because you’re selling multiple loan products, you’ll need to create multiple buyer personas to help you write content for each type of audience.
For example, the people who land on your website will most likely be:
- First-time buyers
- People looking to purchase a smaller home to downsize
- People looking to relocate and purchase a new home
- People who need to refinance their homes
- People who need a home equity loan for debt consolidation
You’ll want to cover every mortgage-related scenario that you deal with so you can create relevant content that will answer your audiences’ questions online.
Write an article focused on a specific topic and keyword, for example, “VA loans.” Make sure to use that keyword in the article’s title, headlines, and throughout the text. Just avoid overdoing it, because that’s known as “keyword stuffing” and can actually hurt your search result rankings.
Start by writing loan scenarios that you deal with, such as:
- “How to get a bridge loan when moving across the country”
- “VA Loans: What Veterans Need to Know Before Applying”
- “FHA loans vs Conventional Loans: Explained”
Think of an infographic as a visual blog post. Everything that could be written into a 1,000 article can also be formed into a simple illustration, graph, or chart.
Really want to enhance your blog posts? Summarize the information, create an infographic, and then embed that infographic into your post.
This way, people will save the image itself, and refer back to it later.
A final word on content marketing for loan officers
When you combine content creation with SEO, you’ll develop one of the strongest mortgage marketing strategies to attract traffic and generate leads from your website.
Through constant blogging and content marketing, you’ll position yourself as an authority in the mortgage business, make your website easier for clients to find, answer their questions, and expand your existing customer base.
Not to mention, all of your content can be recycled, reused, and repurposed across multiple channels. For instance:
- A blog post can become an infographic
- A blog post can be turned into a video
- A video can be summarized as a blog post
- Blog posts can be embedded in drip email campaigns
- Facebook surveys can be summarized and turned into blog posts
Essential mortgage marketing tools for loan officers
As a loan officer, you are highly dependent on the tools and software programs you use.
That’s why it’s crucial to take advantage of digital tools, programs, platforms, and apps that can give you a competitive edge.
As you know, competition is fierce for loan officers. Use these tools to streamline your workflow and improve your clients’ overall customer experience.
Customer relationship management (CRM) software
A customer relationship management (CRM) program is a digital marketing tool that can automate the overall sales cycle and can integrate with an email marketing platform to completely streamline the outreach process.
Essentially, a CRM is like a digital Rolodex that allows loan officers to maintain relationships with their clients.
CRMs can allow you to track your customers’ primary data, such as:
- Phone number
- Company website
- Loan date
- Add notes
- Lead scoring
- Status in the sales pipeline
- Much, much more
CRMs can enhance the overall client service experience, ensuring none of your leads get overlooked or missed.
Harvest time tracker
Harvest integrates with multiple productivity apps, including Google Calendar, Basecamp, Asana, Outlook, and Slack, to keep track of your time and prevent “time loss.”
Users can track their time by selecting “start” and “stop” options in real-time to better record their hours spent calling leads or working on various projects.
This social media management tool lets users upload and schedule several upcoming social media posts all at once, saving them time from having to manually publish social media posts throughout the week.
The program works with Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and LinkedIn so you don’t have to constantly log in to each account — you can post everything from the Buffer platform.
Pocket lets you save articles, videos, and other types of content you can find on the internet to refer back to later.
No more screenshotting or bookmarking random pages that you’ll never find again.
Instead, use Pocket to save those helpful ideas that you’ll refer back to again and again.
LastPass is a password manager that saves all of your passwords, making it easier and more secure to log in to various websites.
With LastPass, users can save their passwords in the program and the program will then autofill your login information, so you don’t need to manually type in or remember tons of different passwords.
If privacy and security are a concern, and they should be, then you’ll like LastPass’ built-in password generator that creates long, randomized complex passwords for enhanced security.
Evernote is a web-based notepad that lets users keep all of their notes, to-dos, project ideas, voice memos, and more all in one place.
Use Evernote to keep track of your mortgage marketing ideas or to collaborate with your team.
Evernote integrates with most email platforms such as Gmail, Google Suite, Outlook, Microsoft Teams, and Salesforce.
Use your smartphone to record simple, short videos to upload to your social media profiles and website.
The camera and sound quality of modern smartphones are perfectly fine for professional filming needs.
You don’t need a professional 4K video camera to impress your web visitors — a short, friendly video will suffice.
Put it in practice
Kaleidico —your mortgage marketing agency
Kaleidico is a marketing and lead generation agency that has the experience necessary to specialize in mortgage marketing.
Our founder, Bill Rice, has over 15 years of experience in the mortgage industry. He combines his experience in the industry and as a digital marketer to help more loan officers generate leads online.
Kaleidico specializes in web design, web development, graphic design, SEO, PPC, email marketing, and content marketing.
Meet our team and learn how we can help our clients grow their marketing strategies and create more consumer-direct mortgage lead generation.
Are you a loan officer needing help with your online presence? Contact us today to start a conversation and see how we can help you generate more mortgage leads online.
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