Building an Unshakeable Business Structure with Hank Hong | FBAA Top Broker Podcast
Hank Hong (affectionately known as Hank the Bank) is a multi-award winning mortgage broker from Vault Lending Solutions based in Sydney and is one of the most recognised names within Australia in our industry.
In this episode, we look at how you can remain front of mind with your clients while discussing the importance of a solid contact program. By the end of this episode, you’ll feel empowered about how you can create a solid business structure that will withstand the test of time.
Why do you value a CRM so much?
It allows us to keep track of all our loans, our clients and the main thing from it is commission reports and to pull data. Data is very important for any broker or firm because you’ve got to be able to track yourself and compare how you went 12 months ago to now. This is my number one priority and should be yours too.
Customer retention is a sore point for most brokers. You’ve got a 21 touch point program, how does it work?
Basically one of the biggest things for me is that I learnt this from an established broker. Asking more experienced brokers for advice is so important so you don’t need to reinvent the wheel.
Basically, the concept is to have the client see your name 21 times over a year. It’s a bit excessive but there are ways it can be done.
A lot of aggregators will have a monthly newsletter, that’s already 12 touch points. If you add the RBA rate decreases, that’s already 24 touch points alone. Now keep in mind their birthdays, anniversary’s, interest only expiry dates, any reason to stay front of mind.
One of the things you do better than others is being really niche, how has this helped your business?
It makes you become a specialist in that field. I learnt from a niche based business. Anything that’s outside of the box is something you need to learn.
When I meet with a BDM from a bank they should have a piece of paper saying what they do. What you need to learn from each bank is what they do differently to everyone else. When you learn that, you become a niche broker. To be able to have a niche is something you’ve studied up on.
One of my specialities is trust loans, I have 6 -7 trusts myself so I know the ins and outs of it. When other brokers compete with me for that client, I already know which lender, the LVR and the specifics of the loan product. I try not to give advice but give them options to speak with the accountant and confirm it works with them. I’ve studied these a lot. It all comes down to education.
Education, how important has that been to get to where you are?
It’s constant. When I started in this industry I was told if you study 2 hrs a week, that’s about 104 hours a year, you’ll get ahead. Think about it like this, if you studied 104hrs and the brokers next you haven’t, you have an advantage. Studying can be anything from PD days to spending time dissecting down a lender and seeing what they do perfectly.
Education is a foundation of why you’ve been successful, do you also take this on board in your business?
Education as a broker is a massive thing. To be successful, you need to invest in yourself through sales training, educate yourself as much as you can. Yet running a business is another kettle of fish, you might need management courses or team leadership. Constant education is in all aspects of a broking life. It’s actually working out if you’ve got the right processed too. It’s phenomenal the information that’s out there, so make the most of business coaches and referral information.
What advice would you give to brokers entering the industry that are brand new?
Look at where you’re getting your clients, don’t just assume you’ll be able to leverage your friends and family. The best referrals are from accountants, lawyers, and real estate agents. You need to have a strong referral source. There are a lot of businesses out there that provide leads with some good and some bad, that’s an option to start but shouldn’t be the main option.
My key three takeaways points are:
- Data will set you free, pulse-check your progress and whether you’re moving forward or backwards.
- Keeping front of mind – there are more than one way to do this but Hank’s is adding clients to Facebook and engaging in their lives.
- Education – essentially it’s learning every day! Policy is a good start but once you’ve mastered the policy and niches of the banks, go further.
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