Paul Hunt is a marketing consultant
I saw a news piece which centred on a network (JLM Mortgage Services) calling for lenders to sign up to formal client contact agreements which would cover governing behaviour around cross-selling and renewing mortgages without advice.
While I understand the sentiment, it really is up to you to own the customer relationship and so ensure there is no need for such onerous governance.
In my experience, regular customer contact, plus planned and concerted efforts to maintain a relationship with the customer is patchy from brokers and admittedly whilst some are excellent, others are less so.
Often the customer is only contacted when their rate is due to expire, but in many occasions this is too late, as no efforts have been made to maintain the relationship since the mortgage completed.
With lenders being more proactive on product transfers and greater competition from other brokers (especially the online players), can brokers really afford to let existing customers leak through their fingers?
With the transaction market showing no signs of improving in the near future and the looming threat of interest rate rises, remortgages and product transfers are the battleground and I know many networks are looking into how they can help their firms set up processes and systems to help them manage their existing customers and more importantly retain more.
It’s not just about marketing and the best results always come from a blend of sales/relationship management and marketing in either B2B or B2C environments, so it’s important not to fall into the trap thinking just because you have automated email routines, more customers will stick with you.
It really is in your hands, they are your customers after all.