Careful Not to Poison Lead Generation

Lead Critic highlights an interesting test conducted on LowerMyBills by Consumer Reports.

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From the journalist reported experience you can understand the experience the consumer expected to have versus what he got:

A Consumer Reports’ tester filled out a form as though he was shopping for a mortgage. Within an hour lenders started calling him. He was swamped with calls at all hours of the day and night, even on weekends.

consumer_reports.gifAnd Consumer Reports says when it comes to too-good-to-be-true mortgages, the real deal is often quite different. For example, an ad that promises a $510,000 mortgage for under $1,498 a month. If you look at the fine print, you see that if you pay just $1,498 a month you’d never pay off the loan because you’re only paying about half the interest and none of the principal. To actually pay it off in 30 years, you’d have to pay about $3,200 a month.

Consumer Reports says there are better options at two other Web sites–HSH.com and Bankrate.com. They list potential lenders and let you choose which one to contact. That means greater control for you and fewer hassles.

I agree with Lead Critic that the, quickly growing old, method of slapping up a distracting flash banner, grabbing a name and phone number, and setting up no expectation with the consumer is a recipe for consumer disgust. And made bad enough, will reverse the trend of consumers coming to the Web first for products and services.

So, if the lead generators won’t change their ways what can lenders do? I think the formula is simple:

  1. Make sure you are immediate to reply
  2. You fill the expectation gap

Filling the gap means telling them they will get other calls, set your trap doors for the late comers, and advise them to beware of credit triggers.

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