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Season 2 Episode 5
Marketing Authentically: Insights from loanDepot’s Alec Hanson

RESOURCES   ❯   The Marketing Rapport Podcast 4-4-24

Episode Summary

In this episode of Marketing Rapport, host Tim Finnigan engages Alec Hanson of loanDepot in a rich dialogue on evolving marketing landscapes. They dive into Hanson’s transition from sales to a marketing leadership role, emphasizing the synergy between these fields for effective brand communication.

Hanson shares insights on adapting to digital trends and the importance of maintaining authenticity in marketing strategies. The conversation also highlights the critical role of personal branding in the digital era, offering listeners actionable advice on building a strong online presence.

Hanson’s experience at loanDepot serves as a backdrop for discussing the challenges and opportunities presented by digital transformation in marketing. Through practical examples and personal anecdotes, this episode provides valuable perspectives on navigating change and leveraging digital tools for marketing success.


Alec Hanson
  • Name: Alec Hanson
  • What they do: Chief Marketing Officer
  • Company: loanDepot
  • Noteworthy: From Sales to Chief Marketing Officer at loanDepot, with 22 years in lending./li>
  • Where to find them: LinkedIn

Key Insights

  • Embracing Change as a Leadership Strategy Alec Hanson emphasizes the importance of embracing change, both personally and professionally. He articulates a proactive approach to change, asserting that individuals and organizations can either lead through change or be passively affected by it. Hanson’s leadership philosophy revolves around the idea of taking ownership and being proactive in the face of inevitable changes. This mindset not only applies to personal growth but also to adapting business strategies in a rapidly evolving digital landscape. His approach encourages leaders to anticipate change, innovate continuously, and maintain agility to stay competitive and relevant.
  • The Power of Authenticity in Marketing Alec discusses the critical role of authenticity in marketing, highlighting how traditional marketing tactics that focus on self-promotion and hard sales are increasingly ineffective. Instead, he advocates for a genuine, consumer-centric approach, where companies provide valuable, relevant content to their audience. This strategy focuses on education, entertainment, and problem-solving, building trust and rapport with the consumer. Hanson’s insight points towards the necessity for brands to move beyond transactional interactions, engaging with their audience in a meaningful, authentic manner to foster loyalty and community.
  • Leveraging Data for Personalized Customer Experiences In the era of information overload, Alec stresses the importance of using data intelligently to tailor customer experiences. He notes the delicate balance between personalized marketing and invading privacy, suggesting that successful brands are those that use consumer data responsibly to offer solutions and information at the right time. This customer-first approach prioritizes ease and convenience, acknowledging the modern consumer’s desire for efficient, relevant interactions. Hanson’s perspective underscores the potential of data to enhance customer relationships, provided it is used with respect for privacy and a genuine intent to serve the consumer’s needs.

Episode Highlights

The Fusion of Sales and Marketing
Timestamp: [00:03:00]

Alec Hanson discusses the blending of sales and marketing into a unified approach, emphasizing their interdependence for achieving effective communication and brand promotion. He shares his journey from sales to becoming the Chief Marketing Officer, highlighting the importance of adapting to the digital consumer landscape.

“I joke that I became the Chief Marketing Officer because I put videos on the internet. I realized that localized sales professionals like mortgage professionals like me, their business model is being challenged by the modern consumer, the digital consumer.”

Authenticity in Marketing
Timestamp: [00:05:46]

Alec Hanson reflects on the significance of authenticity in marketing, noting that genuine engagement and humor can coexist with professionalism. This blend not only humanizes the brand but also makes the marketing message more relatable and effective.

“And so we try to embody that you can have fun and be serious. You can take your job seriously and our responsibilities seriously but we can also laugh at ourselves and kind of have some lightheartedness.”

Embracing Live Engagement
Timestamp: [00:13:18]

Alec discusses the innovative approach of going live on social media to discuss mortgage products. This strategy aims to foster community, encourage real-time engagement, and offer transparent, educational content to demystify the lending process for consumers.

“We have a little opportunity to get up on that ladder more and serve more. And so we’re just going to give them the information they don’t have. And we’re going to see and we’re doing live. And I think it’s going to be interesting.”

Data-Driven Personalization
Timestamp: [00:22:01]

Alec dives into the use of data for personalizing customer experiences without invading privacy. He stresses the fine line between being helpful and being intrusive, advocating for a balanced approach that respects consumer preferences while offering tailored solutions.

“Everyone knows Siri and Alexa are listening to us all the time. And we joke about it. We’re like I said this. And then in my Instagram feed immediately I was fed an ad for this and I was freaked out. But that’s coming; that’s here. That’s the modern world.”

Top Quotes

[00:02:48] Alec Hanson: “I joke that I became the Chief Marketing Officer because I put videos on the internet. […] I always describe sales and marketing as two sides of the same coin.”

[00:07:38] Alec Hanson: “Change is inevitable in everything and I think we all know that as humans. You can either lead into change and through change, or you can let it happen to you. I take that on as a leadership thing; things are always going to happen. So either we can make it or we can be the ones happening. Or we can be the ones responding.”

[00:08:59] Alec Hanson: “Consumers are done with being marketed to and manipulated. They’re choosing what’s relevant to them, a huge opportunity for authenticity.”

[00:12:49] Alec Hanson: “Going live and being vulnerable with people in a non-scripted environment […] I think people are going to really want to tune in and they’re going to watch the replay and they’re going to get educated. And then of course, if we can help them, they’ll call us. That’s the goal.”

[00:22:01] Alec Hanson: “Everyone knows Siri and Alexa are listening to us all the time. And we joke about it. We’re like I said this and then in my Instagram feed immediately I was fed an ad for this and I was freaked out. But that’s coming; that’s here. That’s the modern world.”