How to Write a Loan Officer Marketing Plan + Template
In this article, we will show describe what should be included in each component of your loan officer’s marketing plan and provide some marketing strategies that can help you get started.
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What is a Loan Officer Marketing Plan?
As a loan officer, your job is to help people finance their homes. But in order to do that, you need to generate leads. A loan officer marketing plan will help you identify your target market, create messages that resonate with them, and determine the best channels to reach them.
Your marketing plan should be built around your unique selling proposition (USP), which is the one thing that sets you apart from other loan officers. Once you have identified your USP, you can start developing your marketing strategy. This should include a mix of online and offline marketing tactics, as well as a plan for tracking and measuring results.
Next, you need to determine which channels will be most effective for reaching your target audience. There are many options available, including online advertising, direct mail, and public relations. You’ll need to experiment with different channels to determine which ones generate the most leads.
Once you have a plan in place, it’s important to track your results and make adjustments as needed. Your marketing plan should be a living document that evolves as your business grows.
Why You Need a Marketing Plan As a Loan Officer
There are a number of reasons why you need a marketing plan as a loan officer. First, a marketing plan will help you focus your efforts and ensure that you’re using your time and resources effectively. Without a plan, it’s easy to get bogged down in the details and lose sight of your overall goals.
Second, a marketing plan will help you track your progress and measure your success. You’ll be able to see which strategies are working and which ones need to be tweaked. This information is essential for making decisions about where to allocate your resources.
Third, a marketing plan will give you a roadmap for growth. As your business grows, your marketing plan will evolve. But having a plan in place will help you make sure that you’re always moving in the right direction.
Marketing Plan Basics
A typical marketing plan includes the following components:
- Executive Summary : The executive summary is a brief overview of your marketing plan. It should include your USP, target market, distribution strategy, and financial projections.
- Target Market Segments : Who are you trying to reach with your marketing? Be as specific as possible when defining your target market.
- Unique Selling Proposition (USP) : What makes you different from other loan officers? Your USP will be the foundation of your marketing messages.
- Pricing and Positioning Strategy : How will you price your services and position yourself in the market?
- Distribution Strategy : How will you get your marketing materials in front of your target audience?
- Offers : What incentives will you offer to potential customers?
- Marketing Materials : What collateral will you need to support your marketing efforts? This could include website content, brochures, or email templates.\
- Promotions Strategy : How will you promote your business and generate awareness? This could include online advertising, direct mail, or public relations.
- Digital Marketing Plan : How will you reach your target audience online? This could include SEO, social media marketing, or email marketing.
- Conversion, Referral and Retention Strategy : How will you convert leads into customers and keep them coming back for more?
- Financial Projections : What are your expected costs and revenue for the next 12 months?
How to Write a Loan Officer Marketing Plan
Now that we’ve covered the basics of what a loan officer marketing plan is and why you need one, let’s take a look at how to write one. Here are the essential components of a loan officer marketing plan:
Although the first section of your loan officer marketing plan, it should be the final section of your marketing plan that is written.
In two or three pages, summarize all of the information you have presented in the other sections and include a summary version of any graphs or charts you have included.
You should also include your marketing goals, objectives, and success metrics for the first year of operations.
Target Market Segments
In this section, you will identify your target market segments. Begin by defining your ideal customer. Who are they? What are their demographics? What are their needs and wants?
Once you have defined your ideal customer, you can begin to segment them into smaller groups. For example, you might segment them by age, location, or income level.
As you segment your target market, be sure to keep your unique selling proposition (USP) in mind. Your USP is what sets you apart from other loan officers and will be a key element in determining which segments you target.
You can use this information to create targeted marketing campaigns that will speak to each segment’s specific needs.
Unique Selling Proposition (USP)
Your USP is the one thing that sets you apart from other loan officers. It’s what makes you unique and gives you an advantage over your competition.
To develop your USP, start by identifying your unique strengths. What do you do better than anyone else? What can you offer that no one else can?
Once you have identified your USP, you can begin crafting messages that resonate with your target market segments. These messages should be included in all of your marketing materials, from your website to your business cards.
Pricing and Positioning Strategy
In this section, you will define your pricing strategy and position yourself in the marketplace. To do this, you will need to research your competition and see what they are charging for their products and services. You will also need to consider your own costs and overhead.
Once you have a good understanding of the market, you can begin to develop your pricing strategy. There are a number of pricing strategies you can use, but the most important thing is to be consistent with your pricing across all channels.
You will also need to develop a positioning strategy. This is how you will position yourself in the marketplace. For example, you might position yourself as the “low-cost leader” or the “high-end choice.”
Your distribution strategy outlines how you will get your products and services into the hands of your target market. It should include information about your distribution channels, your partner relationships, and your sales process.
There are a number of ways to distribute your products and services, including online, offline, and through a network of partnerships.
You will need to consider the costs and benefits of each distribution channel and determine which one is best for your business.
In this section, you will develop special offers for your target market segments. These offers should be designed to meet the needs of your target market and should be based on your USP.
For example, if you are targeting first-time homebuyers, you might offer a special discount on your services. Or, if you are targeting high-end buyers, you might offer a free consultation.
Your marketing materials are the tools you will use to reach your target market. They should be designed to attract attention and get your target market to take action.
Some of the marketing materials you will need include a website, business cards, brochures, and email templates.
Your promotions strategy should be designed to generate interest in your products and services. There are a number of ways to promote your business, including online advertising, social media, and public relations.
You will need to consider the costs and benefits of each promotion channel and determine which one is best for your business.
Digital Marketing Plan
In this section, you will develop a digital marketing plan to reach your target market online.
Some examples of digital marketing strategies include:
- Search engine optimization (SEO)
- Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising
- Social media marketing
- Email marketing
- Content marketing
Conversion, Referral and Retention Strategy
In this section, you will develop strategies to convert leads into customers, referral partners into advocates, and customers into repeat buyers.
You will need to consider the following:
- What offer will you make to your target market?
- What is your call-to-action?
- What are your follow-up procedures?
In this section, you will need to provide financial projections for your business. This includes a sales forecast, expense budget, and cash flow statement.
Common Marketing Strategies for a Loan Officer
For most loan officers, there are several traditional and digital marketing strategies that are effective for promoting their business and generating leads.
Some common marketing strategies for loan officers include:
- Networking – Networking is a great way to meet potential clients and referral partners. Attend local business events, Chamber of Commerce meetings, and networking luncheons. You can also join professional organizations such as the National Association of Realtors or the Mortgage Bankers Association.
- Referrals – Ask your current clients for referrals. Provide them with referral cards that they can give to their friends and family members. You can also offer a referral incentive, such as a discount on your services.
- Direct mail – Direct mail is a great way to reach potential clients in your target market. Send postcards, flyers, and newsletters to your list of prospects.
- Online advertising – Online advertising, such as Google AdWords, is a great way to reach potential clients who are searching for loan officers online.
- Social media – Social media is a great way to connect with potential clients and referral partners. Create a profile on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook. Be sure to post interesting content that will get people talking about your business.
- Public relations – Public relations is a great way to generate positive publicity for your business. Write press releases, hold events, and give interviews to local media outlets.
- Content marketing – Content marketing is a great way to attract potential clients to your website. Write blog posts, create infographics, and produce videos that offer valuable information about the loan process.
- Email marketing – Email marketing is a great way to stay in touch with potential clients and referral partners. Send weekly or monthly emails with mortgage tips, industry news, and special offers.
- Search engine optimization (SEO) – SEO is a great way to ensure that your website appears at the top of search engine results pages. Use keyword-rich titles and descriptions, and link to your website from other websites.
- Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising – PPC advertising is a great way to reach potential clients who are searching for loan officers online. Advertise on Google, Bing, and Yahoo! using keyword-targeted ads.
- Lead generation programs – Lead generation programs, such as MortgageLeads.com, are a great way to generate new leads for your business. These programs provide you with access to a database of potential borrowers who are interested in taking out a loan.
These are just a few of the many marketing strategies that you can use to promote your loan officer business. Choose a few that you feel will be most effective for your business and start implementing them today.
When creating your marketing plan, be sure to include a budget for each of the strategies that you intend to use. This will help you track your progress and ensure that you are not overspending on your marketing efforts.
Once you have created your marketing plan, implement it and start generating new leads for your business. With a little hard work and dedication, you will be on your way to success.
Sample Marketing Plan for a Loan Officer
Example – abc loans.
ABC Loans is a loan officer business that specializes in helping people get the loans they need. We offer a variety of loan products, including home loans, auto loans, and personal loans. We are committed to providing our clients with the best possible service and terms.
To help promote our business, we have developed a marketing plan that includes a variety of strategies, such as online advertising, direct mail, and social media. We have also included a budget for each of these strategies so that we can track our progress and ensure that we are not overspending on our marketing efforts.
Our goal is to generate new leads and business through our marketing efforts. We expect that our marketing plan will help us to achieve our goal of becoming the leading provider of loans in our area.
Our target market segments include individuals and families who are in need of a loan.
The individuals and families who are in need of a loan are typically in need of a large amount of money, and they may not have the time or resources to go through the traditional loan process. They are looking for a loan officer who can help them get the loan they need as quickly and easily as possible.
The following is a breakdown of our target market by demographics:
- Female: 50%
- Suburban: 30%
- $25,000-$49,999: 30%
- $50,000-$74,999: 30%
- $75,000-$99,999: 20%
- $100,000-$149,999: 10%
- $150,000+: 10%
- Married: 50%
- Single: 30%
- Divorced: 10%
- Widowed: 10%
- Full-time: 70%
- Part-time: 20%
- Unemployed: 10%
We also target businesses that may need a loan for expansion or other purposes.
Businesses that may need a loan typically have a good credit history and are looking for a loan officer who can help them get the loan they need as quickly and easily as possible.
The following is a breakdown of our target market by business type:
- Small businesses: 90%
- Large businesses: 10%
- Manufacturing: 30%
- Retail: 20%
- Service: 30%
- $1-$5 million: 50%
- $5-$10 million: 30%
- $10-$50 million: 15%
- $50 million+: 5%
At ABC Loans, we pride ourselves on our commitment to customer service. We understand that taking out a loan is a big decision, and we are here to help our clients through every step of the process. We offer a variety of loan products, including home loans, auto loans, and personal loans. We also offer competitive rates and terms.
Our pricing strategy is based on providing our clients with the best possible rates and terms. We position ourselves as a provider of loans that offer competitive rates and terms.
Our distribution strategy is based on providing our clients with the best possible service. We offer a variety of loan products, and we work with our clients to find the best product for their needs. We also offer a variety of payment options, so that our clients can choose the option that best suits their needs.
We distribute our loans through a network of loan officers. We also have an online application process that allows our clients to apply for a loan from the comfort of their own home.
We offer a variety of loan products, including home loans, auto loans, and personal loans. We also offer competitive rates and terms.
To help promote our business, we have developed a variety of marketing materials, such as website banner ads, direct mailers, and social media posts.
ABC Loans will use a variety of promotional strategies to reach our target markets. We will use online and offline strategies, as well as a mix of paid and organic methods.
The digital marketing plan includes the following elements:
The website will be the primary focus of the digital marketing effort. The website will include a variety of features, such as a loan calculator, an online application form, and a blog.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
We will use SEO to improve the visibility of our website in search engines. We will target key phrases that are relevant to our business and our target markets.
We will use social media to create awareness of our brand and to drive traffic to our website. We will use a mix of paid and organic methods on social media.
The goal of the conversion, referral, and retention strategy is to convert leads into customers and then retain them as long-term clients.
To convert leads into customers, we will offer a variety of incentives, such as discounts on loan products, free consultations, and complimentary services.
To retain customers, we will provide a high level of customer service. We will also offer loyalty programs and other incentives to encourage our customers to continue doing business with us.
Based on our marketing plan, we expect to generate the following results:
- 5%: $1-$5 million
- 10%: $5-$10 million
- 15%: $10-$50 million
- 20%: $50 million+
- $1-$5 million: $500,000
- $5-$10 million: $1 million
- $10-$50 million: $3.33 million
- $50 million+: $10 million
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Marketing Strategies for Generating More Commercial Lending Leads
You know business lending is a profitable endeavor, but how can smaller financial institutions compete against megabanks and non-traditional online lenders? The good news is that digital marketing and technology create new opportunities for smaller banks and credit unions to attract and engage small business owners. You also have an existing pool of leads among your business deposit account holders.
This article will walk you through the steps of creating a traditional and digital marketing strategy for generating more commercial lending leads. As an industry leader with years of experience working with community banks and credit unions, BankBound understands the unique challenges your financial institution faces, and we have cutting-edge solutions to help you succeed.
Local Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
As a community bank or credit union, you don’t need to attract a worldwide audience to your site. Instead, you want to increase business lending leads on a local level. Local search engine optimization (SEO) is an ideal strategy for banks and credit unions because it optimizes your site for commercial clients in your area who need the financial products and services you offer. From listing your branch locations and hours, to mentioning the names of nearby towns and cities in page copy, local SEO will help you rank higher in organic search results for commercial lending options in the region you serve. Take these first steps to create and optimize individual business lending pages on your financial institution’s website.
- Each of the commercial loan products you offer – such as construction loans, mortgages, vehicle loans, and more – should have its own page on your website. This way, you can build highly-optimized pages with keyword-rich content that will yield better rankings in the search results. Greater visibility for each of these pages leads to more traffic on your site, which in turn yields higher conversions on these product pages.
- Fill those pages with unique content that is keyword-rich and region-specific. If you are located within a specific service area or market, be sure to include references to this region throughout the copy.
- Include clear calls-to-action on every page so potential customers will be motivated to contact your lending team.
- Include customer testimonials (or consider adding them) to the bottoms and/or sidebars of product pages. In the present “Yelp era,” testimonials and online reviews hold a lot of sway over consumers’ decisions to patronize a particular business or bank. According to research, 85% of consumers trust online reviews as much as recommendations from a friend or relative.
- You should already have individual pages for each of your branch locations . Make sure that location pages are optimized with unique content, accurate contact information, hours and images.
- If you have dedicated loan officers at any or all of your branch locations, mention their names and profiles on the corresponding location page. This can help build a sense of trust and helps humanize your business.
SEO isn’t just about generating more traffic to your website. It’s about implementing strategies that will allow you to reach a highly-qualified audience when they’re searching for a solution to their needs. Taking these important first steps will optimize your site to attract and generate commercial lending leads, setting you up to close the deal once business owners land on your product pages.
Inbound Content Marketing
Choosing a lending partner is a big decision for any business. Make it easier for potential clients to choose your financial institution by providing original and informative page content and blog articles. These two primary sources of content marketing can help your audience understand their commercial lending options, build trust for your FI, and provide a forum for you to explain how you can help them achieve their business’ financial goals. With high-quality website content as part of your overall inbound marketing approach, you’ll drive your desired target leads to your site and capture their attention (and business) with useful and engaging page copy and blog articles. Consider these points to keep your content audience-centered:
- Who is your ideal audience? For example, is it all local businesses? Do you specialize in a certain type of industry or company size?
- What are the needs of your audience? How is your financial institution best poised to meet these needs?
- What are the primary goals of your intended audience? For example, obtaining startup funding or renovating office space to accommodate a growing business.
- What are the common obstacles your audience faces? How can you help them overcome these challenges?
- Brainstorm potential content topics that will help you bridge the gap with your ideal audience when they are in the most need of help. Don’t stick to generalities; get specific to appeal to different demographics. For example, what are the needs of new business owners as opposed to longtime company presidents?
- Page content should also inform visitors about the products and services you offer and explain why your bank is an ideal lending partner. For example, community banks and credit unions can be true allies to local small businesses because of their flexible financing terms and swift decision-making. You can also highlight your financial institution’s focus on relationship-building, a quality that small business owners tend to value.
- Consider the knowledge your audience already has about the topic, and what they need to learn. Craft your content accordingly so that it is neither too advanced nor too basic for your desired readers.
One of the “golden rules” of successful content marketing is to be helpful. When you offer genuinely useful content to address the needs and challenges of your audience, you will establish your financial institution as a valuable source of knowledge for your target audience. At the same time, you’ll produce keyword-focused niche content that is more likely to be picked up by search engines, so your audience can find you among the top organic results of their queries.
Search Ads in Google and Bing
We’ve covered Local SEO and Content Marketing, two approaches that drive traffic to your website through “natural” means such as organic search results, social media shares, and so on. With paid search ads , you can add another dimension to your inbound marketing campaign. Search ads appear at the top of the results page in an effort to grab the user’s attention. You can buy ad placements for certain key terms as well as the names of your competitors. Here’s how to launch a successful search ad campaign:
- Create ad groups surrounding each of your business lending products. That way “business line of credit” has its own ad group, as well as “commercial construction loan” and so forth. This allows you to have greater control over each of your ad groups and the keywords that are assigned to each of them.
- Dedicate some of your search ads to targeting local competitors. This gives you the opportunity to appear in their branded search results, potentially diverting their customers to your site instead for a chance to win new clients.
- Your primary platform should be Google AdWords, but don’t ignore Bing altogether. While it has a smaller reach, many people continue to use it; in fact, Bing reaches 33% of consumers in the U.S. who use search engines. Don’t neglect the portion of your audience that conducts searches on Bing. This could be especially advantageous if your competitors are not advertising there.
- Push your target audience to specialized landing pages for your most prominent business products. Getting them to click on your ad is half the battle. Now you have to engage their interest–and follow-through–with a landing page that is designed to push your visitors through the sales funnel.
- Engage with previous visitors to your website through a remarketing campaign. This means they will see your ads on the other sites they visit after yours. Remarketing ads allow you to provide additional touch-points and special offers to people you know are already somewhat interested in and familiar with your products.
- Beyond Google, Bing, and remarketing campaigns, look for other target websites in your market. Where does your ideal audience spend the most time online? Buy ad placements on those sites. For example, websites that focus on business and business news are usually good bets, since these are valuable resources to business owners.
- Local news websites can also make for successful platforms for reaching a commercial audience. This is another way to demonstrate your local involvement and expertise.
Whatever the size of your search ad budget, make sure you create a combination of text and image ads with messaging that is relevant to your audience.
Social Media Ads on LinkedIn and Facebook
One place you can be sure that most of your target audience spends its time is social media. Small business owners are especially likely to hang out on LinkedIn and other social platforms because it enables them to advertise their services and engage with customers at no cost. Therefore, it’s important for your financial institution to maintain a consistent and professional social media presence for your brand.
Whether you’re promoting content organically or using paid ads on Facebook or LinkedIn, either method is an effective way to reach your audience. A recent survey of senior marketers revealed that 39% of them saw a return on investment from organic social media posts, while 36% saw ROI from paid social media ads. You can make the most of your social media efforts by taking advantage of the extremely specific demographic targeting that Facebook, LinkedIn and other social media sites offer. Identify and reach your niche audience on Facebook with information about your commercial lending services and products. LinkedIn is an especially useful platform if you’re trying to generate business loan leads because it offers granular targeting specific to professionals and professional groups.
Paid ads are not the only way to get your message out to business owners. Both LinkedIn and Facebook allow you to post blog content that can drive traffic organically to your website. You can also participate in relevant professional groups on LinkedIn, where you can post content that will resonate with your target audience. When you speak to the financing needs of business owners with high quality, useful blog content, you provide an easy gateway to your bank. It’s also important to engage with group members beyond content sharing in order to form relationships that will establish you as a helpful resource.
Finally, don’t leave out existing customers in your social media ads and content marketing. The Financial Brand reports that 65% of businesses with commercial loans use their primary financial institution (where they have a deposit account) as their source of business financing. This demonstrates that nurturing relationships with existing business deposit account customers is just as important as developing strategies to increase business loan leads.
Integrate Traditional and Digital Marketing Strategies
While SEO optimization, content marketing, and search ads get most of the attention in current discussions of digital marketing, other aspects of technology are just as important for attracting and winning new business. For example, some marketing experts argue that smaller banks and credit unions can generate more small business loans by paying attention to business owners’ preference for “technology-enhanced loan origination and onboarding.” In other words, potential clients who find you online are more likely to apply for a loan if the entire process can be completed online. In particular, a mobile loan process can be extremely helpful for increasing business lending conversions: 93% of business customers prefer a mobile commercial loan process, according to a recent study.
Let’s make sense of your bank’s approach to digital marketing. Digital Marketing Strategy Guide For Local Banks
Here are some non-SEO and traditional marketing approaches to capturing their attention. Integrating traditional and digital marketing strategy is an effective way to target leads, build relationships, and provide a convenient way for them to close the deal.
- Email Marketing: Contrary to what you might think, email marketing campaigns are still an effective means of communicating with your audience. Emails from financial services businesses had an open rate of 21.56% as of April 2020.
- Email Drip Campaigns: Target your existing and potential commercial clients with a series of emails delivered over a specific period of time that promote your business financing products. Track the success of your email campaigns by utilizing unique URLs for each business banking campaign. Utilize email marketing automation for a more seamless experience.
- Direct Mail and Cold Calling: While these methods work fine on their own, evidence shows that a combined strategy of sending appealing mailers to the right person and following up with a sales call can increase your chances of success.
- Cross-selling to current clients: As we’ve discussed, existing clients are more likely to open additional accounts with their primary bank or credit union. Make sure your business deposit account holders are aware of your commercial lending services by cross-selling during branch visits, special events, and other relevant opportunities.
BankBound can help you build a successful marketing strategy!
Sure, you can take many of these steps on your own, but if your experience as a bank marketer or loan officer at a smaller financial institution is typical, you probably have more than enough on your plate already. BankBound specializes in partnering with community banks and credit unions to supplement your existing marketing strategies and provide access to cutting-edge techniques and technology. Digital marketing is an ever-changing game, but our strategists stay up-to-date on current trends and best practices. If reading this article makes you feel inspired but also overwhelmed, contact us today to learn how we can help you market your commercial lending products to the right audience.