Virtual assistants are becoming all the rage in Web Worker circles. These are professional assistants that help information overloaded people get things done, in higher volumes. Can this be a smart move for mortgage and debt professionals?
I think so. Mortgage brokers have used processors for years to make the post-sale and doc-prep streamlined and painless for increasingly demanding borrowers. The concept is similar–these assistants give you more bandwidth. A virtual assistant, like a loan processor, can be very effective at completing repeatable processes. Processes that make you money, but are not necessarily differentiating or driving new business.
Most discussion of the virtual assistant discussion is around the traditional office assistant role–just making that resource “virtual.” However, I think it could have a stronger role with aged mortgage and debt leads as a prospecting resource.
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In this market, as credit tightens and borrowers are increasingly faced with challenging financial scenarios a lot of your mortgage or debt leads are immediately ineligible. However, to get to that conclusion you usually have to collect at least a couple of additional pieces of information.
A virtual assistant can not only help you with managing your phone messages, email management, and appointment scheduling–they could increase your aged leads contact rate. By simply making a connection, collecting the answer to 2-3 simple questions (make sure they provide NO financial counseling or advice), and passing the qualified ones to you–you can easily double your contact rate and possibly even your closed deals for the month.
Check out a few of these discussions on virtual assistants and tell me what you think of the idea:
- Chris Brogan on Using Small Boxes
- Web Worker Daily on Virtual Assistants
- International Virtual Assistants Association