Let the Fear Motivate You
So, the other day I receive a newsletter from a fellow mortgage person detailing how the “little squabble” (i.e. the trade war) between the US and China is keeping mortgage rates down. Makes sense: the longer the squabble lasts and more tariffs are introduced, the longer the global economy will hold its breath waiting for the next shoe to drop, and mortgage rates will remain lower. It’s a tale as old as time – at least as old as my time. Obviously, this little bit of news is intended to make us want to break into song in the middle of a crowded train station letting our fellow commuters know that all is right with the world.
While the rest of you are sorting out who’s going to sing the melody and who’ll harmonize, I started thinking about the many ads I’m seeing on social media trying to catalyze people into buying a new home or selling their existing home to trade up or down size. The ads all seem to have a common theme that play on the topic of the aforementioned newsletter: the rates aren’t going to be this low forever, so get off your hindquarters and do something! Sure, some of the ads aren’t quite that discrete, but I think I’ve captured the general mood, right?
I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve created a lot of FOMO – Fear Of Missing Out – ads in my lifetime, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with them if they motivate someone to respond. The teenie tiny problem I’m seeing here with these “rates” ads is that they’re all practically the same. Sure, the FOMO factor may motivate a reader to respond to the message, but are they going to respond to YOUR message? In other words, if your ad looks and feels like everyone else’s, what are the chances that YOUR ad is the one that lifts them out of their malaise and gets them dialing the phone – or is your ad going to be lumped in with everyone else’s, and the reader will eventually call on your competitor’s ad? Let the fear of missing out on a chance to set yourself apart be your motivation.
The next Facebook Ad or Instagram post you put out there should tell people why they should call YOU – why your brand and product are going to change their lives. And when they do allow you to meet them face to face, make sure you have something unique to offer or they’ll feel like you duped them. I have a unique way of making contact with real estate agents, I’ll admit, and when I am able to convince them to give me fifteen minutes of their time, I make sure I offer them something none of my competitors are offering (that’s legal, of course). After one such meeting, this is what the agent said to me, “I’ve been in real estate for over 15 years, and I’ve never had a loan originator offer that to me.” I’m not going to tell you what “that” is (but get your minds out of the gutters, kids!) for two reasons: (1) it’s something I worked very hard to perfect and make valuable, and (2) you should stretch yourself to come up with a unique offering that sets you apart from everyone else, too. But I will give you this last piece of advice: whatever you come up with, I can assure you if it involves a photo of you flexing in the mirror at the gym or of the kale smoothie you’ve convinced yourself to drink, you’re on the WRONG track!