Many salespeople think the best way to distinguish themselves from others is to be impartial when they are presenting or prospecting. While that might have been an effective strategy in the past, today it does not have the same impact. Our world now values authenticity and a point of view, whether it is coming from a company or a salesperson. Too often, originators think that a point of view is not necessary and that their only job is to show loan options to a potential borrower. They couldn’t be more wrong. Here is why.
Lilly Singh’s rise as a late night TV host on NBC reflects how someone with no connections or financial backing made her mark on the entertainment industry by sharing a strong point of view. For those unfamiliar with her story, she is a YouTube influencer who has 14 million subscribers and 3 billion views of her videos. She rose to fame on her own by sharing her perspective and insights on social media platforms. Her thoughts resonated with viewers in a big way. What started as a hobby for Singh turned into a book, a world tour and now a TV show.
Why Point of View Matters
We are living in an age where staying behind the scenes waiting to be discovered and hoping for business is a fast track to irrelevance. Sales professionals are challenged as any retail business to share their point of view in the marketplace in a scalable manner. The better they are at doing it, the more successful they are. It isn’t good enough anymore for an originator to be a product expert. Sales professionals must also be skilled at making other people notice them.
Consumers and referral sources should know who you are and what you stand for. If they don’t, they will ignore you and not do business with you. The selling business now requires each originator to market their own personal brand and not depend on the company’s marketing department to build awareness. One of the reasons is that a company’s brand is no longer enough to influence prospects to buy. It doesn’t matter if originators are with a small or large lender, each producer is tasked with presenting a strong point of view and personal brand. For some originators, this new world of selling is frustrating and difficult to grasp. Presenting oneself to the marketplace can be scary at times.
As mentioned in previous blogs, corporate PR and advertising simply isn’t believable anymore. Too many failed promises and sub-par products have burned bridges with potential buyers. But, consumers are still hungry for advice and guidance from someone they trust. They want sales professionals to tell the truth and share their expertise and recommendations.
How Consumers Make Decisions
For many consumers, the first step in their home finance journey is to look online to see who they are dealing with. What do they find when they look up an originator? For some originators, there are no search results or a picture that isn’t professional. Both are major violations when trying to make a positive first impression.
First impressions matter because consumers’ purchasing decisions are driven by emotions. A prospect’s perception of a salesperson and whether or not they share the same values can make or break the connection needed for the producer to earn the business.
For originators to develop lending opportunities, they need to share their unique perspective on business and their own interests and passions. They should present themselves as someone who prospects can identify with.
With all the advanced technology that is available today, selling is still a one to one business. No robot can compete with a person who has years of lending experience helping hundreds of consumers and can convey that they are credible and trustworthy.
While it might seem that the lowest interest rate wins the deal, this is a false assumption. Every transaction is unique because no two people are alike. Each prospect comes to the table with different needs and concerns. Good salespeople align themselves with the individual prospect and present themselves as an expert and a friend.
The importance of shared values and a strong point of view cannot be overemphasized especially as the generations are shifting and Baby Boomers retire. Recent research shows that 87 % of Gen Y prospects have listed shared values as a top priority when making a buying decision.
Are you presenting your unique point of view to the marketplace? If not, you should be.