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Investment Opportunities for Lenders

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I was in a branch recently speaking with a group of investment people. I asked what sales goals they were working on that week. They said that they were behind on their target for getting in new investment money so they were making phone calls to their clients they hadn’t spoken to in a while trying to find out how they felt about their investments elsewhere and if not thrilled, if they would be interested in meeting to discuss what they could do for them. I really admired their initiative. Good long-term follow up with clients is essential if you want to keep them coming back and buying more products and services from you.

Nevertheless, these calls can be intimidating when you are interrupting a client’s day/evening trying to see if there is more business to be had with them. These folks were game to make the calls despite their nervousness and apprehension so we talked a bit about the techniques they could use and how to deal with rejection should they experience some.


After I met with the investment people I spoke with the lenders. Because I knew about the branch goal I asked them how many loans they had done that week and out of those loans, how many of the clients had investments elsewhere. To my surprise they didn’t really know.  I asked how many of the clients that did have investments elsewhere transferred them over to their financial institution or at least made an appointment to speak with someone about their investments. Shockingly, there were none! When asked what the lenders were saying to clients to try to get a conversation going around the investments that is when a dark situation got even darker. They weren’t even asking!

I thought this was quite strange. On one side of the branch there was a group of people making outgoing calls to clients trying to generate some new investment business. And on the other side you had clients coming into the branch that wanted something (a loan), told the person that they had investment money elsewhere, and that person was not even asking about how the client felt about the investment or made any attempt to win the business. Unbelievable! If I was on the investment team I’d be choked! Here you are being proactive, trying to bring in new investment money by making warm calls when all the while the potential business is walking in the door and the other part of my team isn’t even sniffing at the opportunity!

So what should they do?

Lenders, when you find out the client has investment money elsewhere follow these simple steps:

1. Ask them how they feel about the investment. If it’s performing well for them and they are completely satisfied why would they want to switch? Right, they probably wouldn’t. Don’t “product dump” by telling them all about your great investments and investment people. Instead ask them where they are at with the investment – are they happy, making enough, satisfied with the recommendations and/or service they are getting?

2. Ask a good transition question. If they respond that they are at all unsure about the investment, unhappy, concerned or ambivalent then ask something like this: “Mr. Client, if I thought we could get you into a better investment, one that you were a little more confident in, would you consider speaking with someone about that just to explore some options?”

The whole idea with this approach is that you are not going after a home run – a guaranteed sale. You are not trying to get the client to switch their investments in the middle of a loan appointment. All you are trying to do is get agreement that they are not thrilled with what they are currently invested in and then that they’d be open to speaking to someone about it – just to “explore options”. You know as well as I do that if the client agrees to meet with one of your investment people they are half way there to making a switch. In their minds they have already started to consider moving their investments.

Finally, if you really want to get good at this skill track how many loans you do, how many of those people have investments elsewhere and how many referrals or people did you get to switch. This will give you a great summary of how effective you are at getting the client talking about their investments and it will also make sure it stays top of mind during your loan interviews.

If you would like to see some practical examples of this technique being demonstrated please feel free to check out the DVD entitled “Capitalizing on Investment Opportunities for Lenders”. You can see an online preview here.

"People don't miss opportunities because they don't get them; they miss opportunities because they weren't prepared when those opportunities presented themselves."

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Copyright © 2008 by Fusion Performance Group Inc.
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