Sales Boomerang: Timely Intelligence to Ensure No Borrower Left Behind

Alex Kutsishin Co-Founder & CEO and Mark Cunningham, Co-Founder & COO, Sales BoomerangAlex Kutsishin Co-Founder & CEO and Mark Cunningham, Co-Founder & COO When Alex Kutsishin and his cohorts walk the streets with their No Borrower Left Behind™ t-shirts, they are often met with the “what does this mean?” question from curious pedestrians. Instead of handing out leaflets or reading memorized phrases from a marketing handbook—like the average salesman—Kutsishin takes a brief moment to explain the message behind the tagline before engaging in sincere dialogue with people from all walks of life. To truly grasp the gist of the phrase, one must travel back in time to 2015 when Kutsishin was a consultant for a mortgage marketing company. Due to his technology background, Kutsishin—still learning the ropes of the lending industry—was amazed to discover that his ex-employer converted only 20,000 of 212,000 unique phone calls into loans for the year 2015. “I wasn’t sure if a 10 percent conversion rate is good, but was assured that it’s the industry norm,” recalls Kutsishin. When informed that the remaining 192,000 leads were flushed out of the system, Kutsishin was stunned. “Those 192,000 leads were asked to fix their credit score and apply for a loan at a later date. I couldn’t believe they were being discarded,” he says.

"Sales Boomerang’s solution is a gamechanger for us, because we’ve never had access to such information. We truly believe Sales Boomerang has revolutionized the lending industry"

The sheer number of unqualified borrowers led to Kutsishin prodding his former employer with questions such as, “Why are we leaving them behind? Shouldn’t we track their financial events and call them when they qualify? Why must they endure the process of applying again?” He would persist on his path of seeking answers. Upon digging into a client’s “turndown database” that listed 1,500 unqualified borrowers, Kutsishin discovered 1,300 of the turndowns fixed their credit score and secured loans elsewhere. “That company lost $27Mn of business because loan officers were instructed to ignore dead leads.” That wasn’t all. When Kutsishin scanned a few more databases, he discovered that a third of the unqualified borrowers had fixed their credit score but were yet to avail loans. “The universe opened up for me when I realized that our clients were losing billions of dollars in missed opportunities,” adds Kutsishin.

When an Outsider Challenged Conventions

Kutsishin deduced three gaping holes within the system. First off, mortgage companies were unaware of unqualified leads turning qualified. The ineligible borrowers had to repeatedly undergo the process of applying for a loan rather than being intimated upon qualifying. Lastly, the existing borrowers were kept in the dark about qualifying for better interest rate. Kutsishin’s third observation was substantiated when a November 2018 report revealed 6.5 million American homeowners missed their chance to be refinanced in the previous year. “Those Americans are overpaying for mortgages to the tune of $1.5Bn per month because loan officers didn’t do the needful. These flaws existed for years, it took an outsider’s perspective to spot them,” stresses Kutsishin. Besides identifying aforesaid blemishes, Kutsishin concluded that the lending industry prevented one-on-one relations between lenders and borrowers. “I realized it’s a cold industry that lacks a personal touch, and borrowers are treated like customers at a fast food outlet.”

These eye-opening experiences sowed the seeds for the No Borrower Left Behind philosophy and gave Sales Boomerang co-founders, Kutsishin and Arend de Jong, ammunition to challenge long-standing industry conventions. It’s been three years since they created a Borrower Intelligence System that notifies lenders the moment an unqualified lead becomes eligible, or when existing borrowers qualify for better interest rates or new loans. Kutsishin says, “For example, our system will reveal when a borrower has equity to wipe out a $30,000 credit card debt, so they can stop paying 17 percent interest. Also, if an existing borrower becomes eligible for increased loan volume, our notification enables lenders to strike while the iron is hot.”

Akin to the farming system intended to help the land and farmer, Sales Boomerang’s solution is designed to equally aid borrowers and lenders. “We have a commitment to delivering good news to borrowers. We’ve heard stories of borrowers shedding tears when told, ‘you’ve just qualified for a new housing loan because you improved your credit score,’” adds Kutsishin.

Real-Time Data Leads for Loan Officers

The Sales Boomerang Borrower Intelligence System offers products such as Market Watch, Credit Watch, Equity Watch, New Listings Alerts, and Rate Watch. While Market Watch notifies a loan officer when an existing or former client inquires for a loan from elsewhere, New Listings Alerts notifies mortgage professionals when a borrower places their house for sale. USA Mortgage, for example, has benefitted significantly from the latter. “When we know a borrower is selling their house, it gives us a golden ticket to offer them a new loan. Also, when a client’s credit score isn’t satisfactory, we enroll them into the Credit Watch program. It allows us to gradually monitor the improvement in their credit score. The second they’re ready to buy, we receive a notification, and we’re able to link the client to a real estate agent so they can purchase a house,” explains Ron Mueller, Senior VP of Sales & Marketing at USA Mortgage.

Sales Boomerang’s various products, capable of syncing with most popular CRMs including HubSpot and Velocify, are deployed in a client’s environment within 30 days. During the deployment process, Sales Boomerang does a deep-dive into a client’s database before aligning the procured data with the data received from national bureaus and data banks that have access to public records, mortgage, property, and consumer data. The company can integrate the multiple streams of data for a specific value proposition. For example, a borrower that lists their home for sale, or improves their FICO score, or undergoes a divorce, becomes eligible for a specific loan product. “Since all the data comes from vetted places, we have a brand-new piece of data that when combined doesn’t exist elsewhere. If the aggregated data reveals that a borrower has a certain freight score, equity, credit score, and debt level, our system informs that they are a match for a particular loan product,” says Kutsishin.

By tying our intelligence system to their automation systems, we fall in line with their existing workflows. So, when a new alert is sent, the client CRM can create a task for a loan officer to follow up on a particular borrower

After integrating the Borrower Intelligence System with a client CRM, Sales Boomerang allows them to set parameters on the real-time alerts they wish to receive. Once the automated alerts start trickling in, Sales Boomerang’s clients can seamlessly remain compliant in the highly regulated lending industry. According to Kutsishin, loan officers receive alerts on their CRM, e-mail, or mobile devices, and aren’t required to log in to the Sales Boomerang interface. “By tying our intelligence system to their automation systems, we fall in line with their existing workflows. So, when a new alert is sent, the client CRM can create a task for a loan officer to follow up on a particular borrower.” Sales Boomerang also sends out content such as notes, videos, and scripts that clients can refer to while communicating with borrowers.

Post deployment, Sales Boomerang encourages clients to use its trademarked No Borrower Left Behind tagline in their communication with borrowers. As the fuel that drives the Sales Boomerang machine, the phrase is meant to reassure unqualified borrowers of brighter days. “By inserting the ‘We’re a No Borrower Left Behind Company’ memo in their communication to customers, our clients are looking past just transactions.

We are teaching our clients to put themselves in the shoes of the borrower and choose those that don’t qualify for a loan,” says Kutsishin.

Turning the Lending Industry on its Head

In 2019 alone, Sales Boomerang’s clientele—comprising the who’s who of the lending industry—has closed $700Mn worth of new loans that they would have otherwise missed. Wallick & Volk, America’s oldest privately-owned mortgage firm, has admittedly closed $21Mn of loans courtesy Sales Boomerang’s notifications. “Since our partnership started in September 2018, we’ve seen a significant uptake in retentions (of clients) because our loan officers have access to so much more information. In this industry, your database is your key strength, and Sales Boomerang has helped us realize that,” says Brian Rogerson, president, Wallick & Volk.

Michael Guidotti, the Director of Integration and Branch Technology for American Pacific Mortgage, is the first to admit that his company was struggling to capitalize on refinancing opportunities. “Prior to Sales Boomerang, our loan officers didn’t have an alert system to know when to reach out a past client, or even when a client was shopping with another lender. Now, we don’t let opportunities walk out the door thanks to timely notifications,” he says.

Meanwhile, Eustis Mortgage Corporation—a 65-year-old mortgage banker from New Orleans— has witnessed an unprecedented 80 percent growth in its business since adopting Sales Boomerang’s tracking tool. “From the onset, we have volunteered to be a guinea pig for Sales Boomerang. Whenever they introduce a new product, we want to be the first ones onboard. Thanks to their debt monitoring alerts alone, we closed 17 loans. Sales Boomerang’s solution is a gamechanger for us, because we’ve never had access to such information. We truly believe Sales Boomerang has revolutionized the lending industry,” says Stephen Barton.

And finally, Bank of England (BOE) Mortgage has recovered $45Mn in closed loan volume over the first 90 days of 2019. “Those are the loans that could have been closed by a competitor but were saved thanks to Sales Boomerang’s timely data intelligence,” admits a spokesperson. A division of Bank of England, BOE Mortgage has benefitted the most from a refinancing perspective. “Monitoring our existing client database was a manual and labor-intensive process that yielded mediocre results at best. With Sales Boomerang, we are often the first to know when it’s an ideal time for the consumer to enter the market, and because we have a previous relationship, connecting with the consumer is much easier than a typical lead,” adds the spokesperson.

Next Step in the Evolutionary System

Led by a former NASA engineer, Sales Boomerang will explore emerging technologies and bolster its solution with new layers in the near future. On track to secure 100 enterprise clients by the end of the year, Sales Boomerang—the only machine learning and fully-automated service provider in the mortgage industry— wants its roadmap to be defined by technological advancements. Besides designing a new solution to help mortgage professionals identify loan-eligible individuals from within a large LEAP, Sales Boomerang is vying to eliminate the redundant process of loan officers contacting unqualified borrowers. “When a lender purchases 10,000 leads and discovers only 2,000 are loan-eligible, they are unnecessarily spamming 8,000 individuals. Through our new solution, we will eradicate that by providing 100 percent accurate data to lenders, saving everyone a ton of time and energy,” says Kutsishin.

The New York-based mortgage tech firm is also designing a preventive solution designed to alert a lender of an impending financial transaction by a borrower that could potentially jeopardize a loan. Consider a borrower purchases a new automobile during the loan application phase and compromises their debt-to-income ratio. Since Sales Boomerang vets multiple data sources, it can provide the lender timely intelligence. “This solution will ensure borrowers don’t make an uninformed decision and ruin their loan application,” informs Kutsishin.

In driving the No Borrower Left Behind movement forward, Sales Boomerang will conduct live events and conferences across the country with the goal to deliver educational, hands-on workshops for leaders in the industry. Ultimately, Sales Boomerang plans to modify its notification software to serve industries that are linked with the mortgage industry—the likes of real estate and insurance. “We believe we can apply the same philosophy and technology to help other industries,” concludes Kutsishin.

- James Robertson
    July 11, 2019