Consumer Protection, How to Throw a Lifeline to Troubled Borrowers

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The lead industry has never been a poster child for consumer protection. However, I think changes in the market and the economy could make our industry increasingly important.

Certainly the scammers will remain in pockets, but the “good guys” can set the bar high for consumer protection and service–forcing out those that drag down the reputation of lead providers and brokers.

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Here are some of the important best practices in looking for a lead provider with consumers’ best interests in mind:

1. Consumer Placement: Consumers are increasingly in challenging scenarios. A good lead provider will work hard to place every single lead with a competent financial services provider. The consumer inquired because they need help–they are counting on us.

2. Compliance: Any lead provider or lead broker should have a compliance program. They should be able to articulate how they do their best to comply with appropriate Federal and State laws. There agreements should also expect the same of their partners.

3. Data Quality:
The Internet is full of bad data. Consumers provide inaccurate information, marketers ask confusing questions, or data simply changes over time. This is often the case with consumer contact information. The best lead providers and lead brokers have a process to do their best to enforce quality in their lead data.

4. Enforcement: What happens when you find a bad partner? It is a fair question. If you can’t get a straight answer–you might want to move on.

If everyone follows these simple steps it will help keep a clean “neighborhood.” These simple concepts will help put the consumer at the center of the equation, getting more of them helped, and recovering this market much faster. Trying to get the consumer helped, in a responsible manner, is the ultimate bailout strategy.

It is an important time in the business cycle and the economy to help each other out. That means watching out for the consumer, your partners, and your long-term business success.

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