Are your Multiple Line Agents vendors or partners in the referral process?
What’s the difference you may ask?
A vendor is someone that might sit in line waiting for their services to be required. A vendor may be perceived as a bit expendable; “If you don’t help me, someone else will.” Vendors may provide top notch service and become highly recognized and respected, but a vendor typically does not have a stake in the process. A vendor may, or may not, have a relationship. When a loan officer or real estate professional says, “Call XYZ company, they have the best rates” or “Here are three insurance agents that can help provide us with a binder” or “Call your agent to provide us a binder”, I can’t help but believe we are simply a vendor.
A partner has a stake in the process. A partner is brought onboard in the beginning of the process, instead of the last to be contacted. Partners focus on their other partners and strive to work with them at every level. Partners have relationships that are forged because of the aligned goals and direction. When a LO or RA says, “Call Mark he is the best in the business” or “You are free to use whomever you like, but I trust Mark with my personal insurance” or “Mark has helped a majority of my clients with great service at a great price”, you’ve become a trusted partner in the process.
The next question you’re probably asking is, “How do my agents become partners (Mr. Know-it-all)?” Let’s script it out so you can see exactly the power in partnering with these professionals! Let’s pretend you are a real estate agent, a loan officer, a title or escrow representative, o.k.?
Here is how I train my agents to not only get “your” personal business but also become a referral “partner” as well.
Mark: What would it take to get your business?
a. What if I promised better service?
b. What if my company was top rated and nationally recognized?
c. What if my rates were the best?
d. What if my baby needs newer shoes?
e. Will any of these questions have you consider me as your preferred vendor?
You: Well, I am all set and happy where I am. I refer all my clients also to XYZ.
Mark: What if I could become a partner with you in helping grow your business and assist by driving local home buyers your way?
You: Insurance agents have promised me referrals before but have never delivered on anything but donuts! If you can prove to me that you can help me get one additional client much less a stream of quality home buyers, not only do you have my referrals, but you also can have my personal business.