Actions Speak Louder Than Words
By Steve Mariani
With all the growth in the broker industry going on around us it’s easy to lose focus on two major factors that have probably gotten most of us to where we are today. With all the technology and social media happening I think getting back to basics is essential for our future success and what I’ve been concentrating on for the last few years. Connecting with our broker offices and visiting them whenever possible has really opened my eyes to this fact. It’s great to have followers, Facebook friends and LinkedIn connections but what I’ve been noticed lately is that after a personal visit and maybe the sharing of a meal, our business with that office usually increases. Here is what I’ve noticed and want to share today in hopes of it helping you and your office staff.
Do what you say you will do and always set reasonable expectations. Whenever I’m in front of potential new broker offices the 2 things I always bring to their attention are:
1) We only work with the broker industry and we do not market or work with the general public at all. We actually require any buyer and seller coming directly to us to locate a transaction broker to assist with their deal, if they don’t have one already. This instantly brings an understanding to that broker of how important they are to our success.
2) We also explain that we will help any of their buyers understand and navigate their SBA loan whether we have produced that loan or not. Sharing information and being a part of any transaction’s successful closing is our goal and if another lender is the best for a particular borrower or deal then we want them there and are willing to explain anything during the process that they struggle with understanding. What follows is typically a question, why would you do that? It’s simple, high tide raises all boats and if we can make a difference and help a broker close even one extra transaction then we’re doing it.
With all the changes in financing in 2018 and moving forward on an almost quarterly basis, our mission is to educated not only borrowers but brokers alike. We feel it’s our responsibility as a leading broker finance source to always be providing the most current and cutting-edge methods to our clients securing transaction loans. We explain to each and every client we work with that we will “always do what is in their best interest whether that solution includes us or not”, every time.
With the broker industry heating up as it is today and us not advertising to the public, we’ve learned a better way to grow our company and hope this can help grow yours too. Aside from doing what you say you will do and setting expectations, which should be an everyday practice, we’ve learned to ask for referral business. After being in business for over 22 years our customer base of brokers understands our value proposition almost better then we do and can easily explain it to his closest friends. In this industry “closest friends” typically means a brokers competition in many cases and that’s a wonderful thing. Healthy competition and having a relationship with them usually benefits both parties in many ways. The most obvious being that if you cannot provide what that particular customer is in need of, recommending your competition typically earns you a higher level of respect with both parties involved.
In our industry we are confronted many times with our lender competition and I will share how we handle it every time. I’ll use and example from last year where we received a loan request for 3.5MM and it was all commercial real estate, meaning it was a secured transaction which every lender strives for. Learning there were 4 other lenders in the transaction and many were my friends we were the first to back out. The reason being that I would never compromise my long-standing relationships over a single transaction, no matter what the loan amount. I also recognized that 2 of the lenders would produce a structure and term better for the customer than I could produce.
The bottom line to my message is really this: Do what you say you will do and create relationships with everyone in your industry, you never know where your next quality listing or customer will come from. Ask for referrals from your friends, customers, sellers and your competition as it always helps and don’t forget to give back.
If you handle transactions ranging from 400K to 5MM then we would ask for your referral and the opportunity to create a relationship with your office. Please share this message and our information whenever appropriate.
Help us spread the news. If you think our newsletters bring value, then please help us by sending this to associates that you think can benefit. We appreciate referrals and your business.