darren-nolander-valueThe easiest way to determine the unique, inherent value you bring to your clients is by analyzing what past clients have said about your service. If you haven’t already, this is a great time to dig deep into your online reviews.


Find five words or phrases that continue to pop up in your reviews. Maybe it’s timely, considerate, professional, easy to talk to and intelligent. Hone in on these characteristics and tailor your customer service approach around them.


Carry out this same audit on your competitors. Your radar should go up if, for example, your competitor’s customers continue to emphasize how knowledgeable she was while it’s crickets on this subject from your own clients.

More importantly, however, you want to discover the kinks in their service. Perhaps the borrower always had to reach out to the LO for updates, instead of the other way around. Maybe the LO was consistently running behind or misplaced an important document, resulting in delays.

It can even be simple things like spelling a name incorrectly. Trust me, Johnathon knows if you continually refer to him as Jonathan in your exchanges. Is it a capital crime? No. Does it say “this guy is so careless and ambivalent he can’t even be bothered to get my name right”? Yes. Will it make Johnathon ask “if he’s this bad with details do I want the fate of my life’s biggest investment in his hands”? You betcha.

Client Priorities  

When you’re sifting through all these reviews you’ll tend to notice that borrowers tend to fall into one of two camps when it comes to customer service. Some appreciate immediate gratification, prioritizing the lowest rate and fastest process possible. Others are in it for the long haul and appreciate terms that will play out more favorably a decade or more down the road.

Make sure you can speak to and accommodate both types of customers to the best of your abilities. An easy way to do this is to have a few case studies in your back pocket that demonstrate your successful track record with borrowers in similar situations.

I can’t stress the importance of online reviews, self-auditing and adjusting one’s customer service strategies enough at this time in the market cycle. I also encourage you to continually reach out to clients for feedback. If they’re not comfortable filling out an online form, or if you want to solicit insight from colleagues who know your business intimately, you can do so by asking, “If you were to refer me to someone else, what would you tell them about me and my services?”

Don’t forget to ask for that referral after they’ve laid the feedback on you!

Regional Vice President - Southwest

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.