Australian businesses are beginning to understand the opportunities of integrating social networks into their organisation, with mortgage franchise Aussie Home Loans Dee Why in Sydney selling its first home loan via Facebook.
Serge Scekic and Jim Sharif set up the the Facebook group, Aussie Dee Why as a way of showing their proud families back in Serbia and around Australia their business on Sydney’s northern beaches.
But the group, with a modest 20 members, has also become a business tool.
Scekic said a customer sent him a friend request and then e-mailed asking about Aussie Dee Why’s service.
“He said he was a first home buyer and was interested in getting pre-approval for a loan,” Scekic said. “I sent him a questionnaire, which outlined his needs and preferences for a home loan and he completed it and sent it back straight away.”
Scekic submitted the application to the lender and the customer has signed the papers for his first home loan.
“He came into the office to sign up for the loan,” Scekic said. “I knew what he looked like from his Facebook profile, but it was the first time I had met him in person.”
The unconventional way of doing business had been quick, convenient and easy for both him and the customer. But, as some of the best ideas often are, the new business models came about almost by accident.
“We really just wanted to show off our stores to our friends and family back home,” Scekic said. “But now that we’ve seen how it can work, and how easy it is, we will definitely look at doing more of it in the future.”
Aussie founder and executive chairman John Symond applauded the innovation of Scekic and Sharif.
“Serge and Jim are proud of what they’ve created at Aussie Dee Why and this passion to showcase it through modern channels like Facebook has helped them get more business and a first home buyer into his first home,” he said.
“The combination of increasingly popular social media tools online and great face-to-face service has proved to be a great option.”