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What Are Top-Tier Originators Doing to “Wow” Their Borrowers?

I recently drove past a little Greek restaurant that I used to patronize from time to time. It was good, but it wasn’t great. Lo and behold, in the door was a “Closed Permanently” sign. As tough as that is to see, especially at this time of year, a little further down the street was another eatery, one of my favorites, and that place was buzzing with business. The moral of the story? You have to be great, not just good, if you’re going to survive and thrive in this market.

In the mortgage industry, some loan originators are a cut above, consistently creating “Wow” experiences for their borrowers — and unsurprisingly, they’re not hurting for business. So, grab a hot cocoa and lean in to hear “A Tale of Five Testimonials” and learn what top-tier LOs are doing to create “Wow” experiences for their borrowers!

One of the most common conversations that I have with lenders involves a dissonance between leadership and loan officers about how to approach customer experience improvements. Leaders aim to guide the company as a whole toward a greater customer-first focus and attention to every delight-invoking detail, yet more often than not, LOs perceive that they’re already delivering a world-class experience and have nothing to “fix.” And the LOs can back it up. Far from getting “Naughty” feedback, they routinely receive “Nice” reviews like these:

  1. “Joe is a very nice person to work with. Enjoyed the whole process.”
  2. “Tracey was very nice and understanding. She answered all phone calls and all my questions multiple times a day.”
  3. “Julie is great at explaining things in an understandable way, and she’s super nice.”
Why is this important for you?

While there’s nothing wrong with “Nice” reviews, LOs in today’s market need to produce “Wow”-inducing experiences for their borrowers if they want to continue to grow their influence and reach, and ultimately their revenue. That means lenders and LOs alike can no longer hang their hats on their many 5-star borrower ratings. With the industry average LO star-rating at 4.75 out of 5 stars, loan officers will need to find new ways to differentiate themselves if they want to be successful. The best ones are already doing this.


Here are some examples of the types of testimonials we’ve seen from some of our best-in-class clients of STRATMOR’s MortgageCX program. See if you can spot the differences between the “nice” reviews and these “Wow-inducing” ones:

  1. “It meant so much to have Carly there on the day of closing, especially as a first-time homebuyer. She even brought us a gift for the house. Can’t express our gratitude enough!”
  2. “When I told Wendi we were looking for an insurance company, she went above and beyond to help us find one — she even got us quotes. I’m blown away!”
  3. “The seller had pre-signed his closing papers because he was traveling to his second home in another state, so Paul arranged a pre-closing ahead of time and had a notary there to handle all the paperwork, because the property is located three hours away from us. He went way beyond what was expected!!
  4. “Emily made the total process smooth and reassuring. I felt she treated me like family. She was attentive to all of my needs and went above and beyond in every aspect of the process. She’s the best and I’ve already sent a friend and a family member her way!”
  5. “Wayne’s video introduction was great. By the time we made our choice and put in our loan application, we felt like we already knew him.”

Now comes the million-dollar question to ask yourself: Am I infusing “Wow” into my customers’ experiences, or do they just think I’m really nice? The first will produce word-of-mouth referrals at an exponentially higher rate.


Here are a few ways you can produce some “Wow” this holiday season:

  1. Donate: Offer to make a donation to the charitable cause of your clients’ choice for any closings that happen in December … or all of 2024. Why not? It says a lot about your character, and it creates a personal bond with your borrower. People like to refer business to generous people.
  2. Make a List … and Check it Twice: Track down all your testimonials from 2023 and read through them. Keep track of the people who truly had “Wow” experiences and drop them a personal holiday note to keep those good vibes flowing.
  3. Copycat: If you’re in leadership, read through your 2023 testimonials, identify the most inspiring experiences, and share them across the organization, encouraging LOs to copy those behaviors. If you’re an LO, try starting with the five ideas mentioned in this article that set loan officers apart. It may just win you a few deals you may not otherwise have won.

If you’d like to discuss the STRATMOR program in more detail, email me at or find time on my calendar to set up a free MortgageCX consultation.

To find more monthly Customer Experience Tips, click here.

MortgageCX is now integrated with Encompass®!

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