Baiting beats bleating about duff leads

Avid readers of the MS letters pages can\'t have failed to have noticed the growing number of intermediaries reflecting dissatisfaction with the service they receive from providers of mortgage leads.

Invariably the gripes tend to centre on the fact that these supposed leads are worth about half of nothing. In reality, they represent little more than a punt in the dark with a name and telephone number leading to a time wasting phone call with a perplexed member of the public whose need for a mortgage is about as obvious as a fish’s need for a bicycle.

What amazes me is that people are surprised by this. I suppose I’m in danger of stirring up a chorus of disapproval but frankly, if you’re gullible enough to be taken in by the marketing spin of these companies you deserve everything you get. If the mortgage leads they provide are that good or that easy to convert, why would they want to sell them on? They’d be recruiting someone to convert them for themselves.

It’s a bit like the old saying that says those who can do and those who can’t teach. I put mortgage lead providers in the same category. Except they’re not even teaching, they’re primarily fishing – and judging by the growing number of complaints, they’re hooking quite a few.

Anyone who wants to succeed in the intermediary world of today really needs a bit more get up and go than relying on handouts – even ones they’ve had to pay for.

Let’s face it, there really isn’t much chance that a mortgage lead provider is going to turn out to be the good fairy in disguise. And with Christmas and your birthday each only coming once a year you’re unlikely to handed any presents during the other 363 days.

Successful mortgage broking is hard work, but it’s not really any harder than being a success in any business.

There’s only one guaranteed route to more business and that’s through building your own client base; developing and expanding it by providing a service that is demonstrably better than the competition.

There’s far more chance of getting qualified referrals from satisfied clients who know you than there is from some nebulous organisation that is principally trying to profit from you.

So I have little sympathy for those who whinge about their misfortune at the hands of someone who has sold them a lead that didn’t work out. If you choose to sink your line in someone else’s over-fished swim you shouldn’t be surprised when you don’t catch much.

And if you’re languishing in the ranks of the disaffected, a far better use of your time than committing your moans to print would be to commit to action. Try casting some bread on your own water. Baiting is likely to be more profitable than bleating, and more satisfying than trying to run down rubbish leads.

peter mounty