Author: Jason Frazier
In the Mortgage industry over the last six months, I have noticed a growing trend in automation and demographic generalization. For the most part, automation is a great tool to speed up efficiency, especially in the mortgage industry. Putting certain demographics in a generalized buckets for marketing and branding strategy is also a way to make your advertising easier. However, in my opinion both are being implemented the wrong way.
Automation is nothing new in business, even in an archaic industry such as mine. However, recently it seems that companies just seem to think that using technology to automate the mortgage process ("The Digital Process") is the same as improving the customer experience. Insert "wrong buzzer" sound here.
Sorry, not the same thing. Creating the digital process is awesome for the transaction process. It is. But technology is NEVER a replacement for the human element in a relationship driven industry, such as mine. And that's what I see companies trend towards. They think nothing of CX (customer experience) when designing their workflow. "Let's get an app; let's make everything digital, paperless, etc..." Are you serious? Those are TOOLS, not an experience. Don't believe me? Check out the "Rocket Mortgage" reviews in the app store.
Demographic generalization. Raise your hand if you have heard the following, "Millennials don't want to talk to people, Millennials only text, Millennials do this or do that.." Raise your hand everybody! You all have heard this. Yes, there is some truth to those statements. But you know what? I know non-millennials that don't want to talk to people, that want to text. My mom texts me 99% of the time. Or uses FB messenger or email. And she is a boomer. Stop generalizing.
It's great to take data and apply that to helping your business. However, you need to be careful putting people in buckets. Every human being is unique. Every one of them. They all don't want the same thing. They all don't want to be treated the same way. Stop creating your workflow and marketing based on generalizations. Or do so at your detriment.
Even though it is better for my company and me if you don't change your ways, I care about the perception of our industry. Every company that does CX wrong hurts everyone just a little bit in the eyes of consumers. We already have a bad rap, a shitty perception. It makes it that much harder to change that when lenders screw up CX. People tell me I am crazy for talking about competitive advantages but from my perspective; I will win either way. To me, it is just easier to compete and win, when competition isn't dragging the entire industry down as a whole.