NMP - July 2018 - 56

special focus on SOCIAL MEDIA a special focus on SOCIAL MEDIA a special focus on SO

Social Media: The Cornerstone
to Your Marketing Foundation

By John Bentley

ocial media has
become a key
component of any
business
marketing
strategy and
cannot be ignored as a means
to promote and grow a
company. Those in the
mortgage industry might
wonder why anyone would
follow a mortgage company.
The fact is that borrowers want
to understand lending options.
Mortgage professionals want to
impart information that leads to
good life choices for their
clients. This makes them a
valuable go-to resource that
someone would want to follow
on Facebook, LinkedIn or
Instagram. It is pertinent to
utilize social media channels to
network, collaborate and share
relevant, diverse content
quickly. Social media requires a
strategy, excellent consistently
posted content, and planning in
order to achieve successful
results and maintain an
engaged audience.
Before sharing tips on best
practices for a well-executed
social media marketing plan, it
is good to know why the effort
is worth it. Top originators
know to market where
prospects live. Prospects now
live in the social media world.
Pew Research Center's latest
study on Social Media Use in
2018 reports that 68 percent of
all adult users across a wide
range of demographics are on
Facebook and 35 percent on
Instagram. LinkedIn is mostly
used by college graduates and
those in high-income
households with 50 percent of
this demographic viewing. This
information should be enough
to motivate anyone in the
mortgage industry to maintain a
social media campaign to keep
pipelines full.
It can be a struggle for a
mortgage company to
determine how to use social
media to grow business in a
challenging market. It is crucial
to understand how to use it,
engage your audience, and

S

JULY 2018 n National Mortgage Professional Magazine n

NationalMortgageProfessional.com

56

""Most social networks are appropriate for almost any
industry and message, but it is important to
understand the business model."

drive traffic to your Web site.
Steven Winokur, Chief
Marketing Officer at Angel Oak
Companies, has seen the impact
of a strong social media plan.
"Incorporating social media
into your marketing is a costeffective way to reach a large
audience," said Winokur. "It has
made it easier to establish
rapport with brokers and
potential borrowers. Angel Oak
has experienced a tremendous
amount of growth in a declining
market. Brokers want
information on how we have
done this and how we can help
them thrive. Social media helps
us impart this information quickly
and keeps our audience
engaged."
Building blocks
Most social networks are
appropriate for almost any
industry and message, but it is
important to understand the

business model. The lighthearted content shared on
Facebook requires edits to
conform with the more
professional environment of
LinkedIn. Understanding what
each network does and
providing a customized
message can better resonate
with your audience increasing
your chances of adding
followers. Consistency with
posting is also very important
so that your audience is
accustomed to seeing your
message and then anticipating
your next post. Strictly posting
product information or "contact
me" sales messages becomes
boring and always has the
perception of just being another
advertisement. Brokers and
borrowers want help and not a
sales pitch. This helps raise
your brands authority and trust
in the market. Add in good
news, industry updates, how

your products are helpful to
borrowers unique
circumstances, staff
introductions, and celebrations
and you have more of a story to
build through social media. The
objective should be to get your
audience to see you as a go-to
expert. Minding etiquette will
keep viewers from
unsubscribing. Avoid hard sell
messages, do not overload
readers with too much
information or hashtags, and
make sure links are relevant
and active.
Content is king and the key
to a successful campaign, but
there is work and planning to
be done beforehand. The
backbone of a truly successful
social media campaign includes
strategy and it is important to
setup an analytical
infrastructure across the
platforms where you want to
advertise. Facebook and
LinkedIn have pretty
sophisticated analytical
reporting channels that
integrate with Google Analytics,
and can provide extremely
detailed information about your
social followers, as well as your
website users. Once you start
to understand the demographic
of users who are engaging with
your Web site, ads and posts,
you can customize the focus of
your messaging to keep driving
new leads. Measuring success
comes down to building your
audience through reach and
motivating your audience to
interact with your content.
Conversion is the most
important measurement of all.
Social media content should
always link back to your Web
site. Conversion metrics you
should track include
registration for downloads and
online form completions.
Conversation into leads
While driving conversation and
engagement is obviously
important when creating social
media posts, it is also critical to
have a defined goal with each
post you share. Providing
relevant and interesting


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