With interest rates on the rise and loan volume declining, mortgage professionals need to consider new options to generate leads. One of the most cost-effective ways to generate new business can be through a call center – if the call center strategy is tailored correctly.

Mortgage professionals will soon be able to get the inside scoop on how to tailor their call-center operations to best suit their business in a free webinar hosted by Best Rate Referrals. The webinar, which will be held at 3 p.m. EST Aug. 7, will give mortgage pros tips on how to use call centers to bring in prospective clients, how to connect mobile and digital campaigns to drive call-center traffic, and practical ideas for implementing call-center operations, either in-house or through a vendor.

“There are a lot of things to think about when you’re trying to inject a call center into your business model,” said Raymond Bartreau, founder and senior vice president of ending at Best Rate Referrals. “Do I do it myself or do I use a third party? Do I offshore it, and what are the pros and cons of that? Once I’ve got those issues figured out, where do I go to get the help? I think this webinar is going to shed a lot of light on that.”

The biggest question, of course, is whether a call center is right for your company to begin with.

“Whether it’s an originator or a branch manager running a team, there are really two main indicators about whether a call center is right for you,” Bartreau said. “One is if you’re not hitting your volume numbers with your current business model. … If you’re not hitting those volume numbers, one way to turn them up is with a call center. The other big red flag is if your loan officers are spending more time prospecting then they are closing.”

If that’s the case, Bartreau said, utilizing a call center could help a company keep its originators doing what they’re best at – closing loans.

“The benefit (of call centers) is to save the loan officer time and keep them selling to prospects,” Bartreau said. “There are a lot of successful companies that are using their call centers to talk to customers before they go to a loan officer.”

However, Bartreau said, many people have misconceptions about call centers that can make them hesitant to utilize them.

“There are some misconceptions that most call center opportunities are offshore,” he said. “There are plenty of onshore centers that you can tap into. The other misconception is that a call center is very expensive. After you’ve got it all set up, it’s probably the lowest cost per fund in the space. Another thing that people are really afraid of is the difficulty to start and manage a call center. It is a lot of work to set up, but you should look at this as an investment in your business. Call centers take some time to build, but once you’ve got it built, it’s really pretty easy to manage. And when you look at what a call center produces – an inbound call from someone who’s interested in your loan – that’s a valuable service.”

Bartreau said that the webinar would help dispel some of those myths – and give mortgage pros valuable tips on how to make the call center model work for them.

“In the webinar, we’re going to dive into a lot in regards to data, and the hurdles of trying to build a call center yourself,” he said. “There’s a lot that goes into starting it, and I can walk folks through that process to save them valuable time. A call center is consistent, and a call center will achieve loans at a cost per fund that makes sense, but you have to choose the right model of call center for your business.”