Nurture What You Already Have
How to get clients for your law firm is a question I hear all the time from young lawyers who are starting their own independent practice.
Of course, I encourage them to pursue this line of inquiry, and provide them with as much insight, strategy, and guidance as I can on the subject, but I also suggest they add an additional element to their focus.
I want to make sure they give proper credence to the notion of client care.
Client Care, Reputation, And Marketing
These three elements of your practice are all wrapped up together in an intertwining network. They carry over into each other, and ultimately lead to your success as a lawyer.
Notice, however, that it begins originally with the manner in which you are treating the clients you already have.
Clients who have received exemplary service from you will naturally want to talk to other people about this, which builds your reputation positively. Their referrals then lead to other new clients, thus contributing to your marketing efforts.
Without a monetary cost I might add.
Ideally, they will remain loyal repeat customers, which is also a cost savings.
Speaking Of Cost
So, not only are you adding value to your community by serving your customers as best as you can, it is simply smart business.
What then is exemplary service?
Let’s have a look shall we.
Clients want to know that they are being taken care of and that their messages are being received. Even if it is just to make an acknowledgment that their communication has been seen, make sure to get back to them within 24 hours.
If you really want to provide top quality service, make sure you respond the same day.
Be Focused and Attentive
When you have your client in your office or on the phone, be there totally and completely for them.
Turn off your phone and any other distractions, and give them the full attention that will make them feel like they are being truly heard and attended to.
Everybody wants to know their concerns are being heard, especially when they are paying for this.
If you need to brush up on your active listening skills, have a look here
Clarity and Transparency
Be upfront and detailed regarding the estimated costs and fees that your client can expect.
Make it absolutely clear what they are paying for.
If you provide an opportunity for them to ask you questions about it, even better. This will make it more likely that their account will be settled on time, as they are considerably less likely to see any unexpected or surprise costs.
Being transparent, and taking the time to thoroughly explain your firm’s process regarding their case is highly recommended. Explain what your firm will be doing and not doing, and in what order.
Taking the time to do these things shows you care that the client knows what is going on with their case so they aren’t left in the dark at any point along the way.
Customize Your Communication
Every client is going to have a preferred manner of communication, so why not satisfy them. Whether it be email, phone, or in person meetings, find out how they would like to proceed and tailor your services accordingly.
It is easy enough for you to do this, and you are more likely to have a satisfied client if you do.
Give your clients the opportunity to submit feedback to you. Surveys and questionnaires are good examples, and will potentially provide you with the helpful data you can use to modify or alter your services.
This will keep you consistently improving.
It can really have an effect if your client hires your services again and sees that you have taken their feedback to heart, and acted on it.
This will create a loyal customer and super-fan.
Finally, follow up with a communication after you have concluded your business with your client. Ensure that they have received all that they require, and that their case has concluded to their satisfaction.
Again, this is showing them that you truly do have their best interests in mind. And you should.
Client care should be at the heart of your operations for all of the reasons mentioned.
If you have staff, you will want to ensure that they share and understand your approach and take the proactive measures that you outline for them.
Until next time!