One of the main goals of any law firm, regardless of size, is to grow and thrive. However, many attorneys report that they are quick to kick business development to the curb when short on time. After a big case or two walk through the door, it’s easy to focus on what’s in front of you and forget the need to engage in more of the non-legal activities necessary for sustained growth.
But, when you pick your head up and realize you’re about to “eat the last of that kill,” stress rises, and the focus shifts to fear.
Prospecting for business during a crisis is not optimal. Doing so can lead to desperation selling, which can devalue a law firm’s services and lead to a reputation of low cost, low value that is hard to shake.
Fortunately, marketing and business development are not brain surgery. And numerous tried and true prospecting methods are available to firms looking to stay afloat and thrive in a sea of legal service providers.
Perhaps the most important aspect of prospecting for the future is not waiting to do so. Firms need to start looking for new business as soon as possible and continue their efforts indefinitely. The longer a firm waits to drum up business, the sooner that firm will face revenue problems.
Always remember that prospecting isn’t something law firms have the luxury of doing next month or even next week. It should be something that occurs continuously and as soon as possible.
Networking is one of those terms that is bandied about often but not taken as seriously as it should be. However, the truth remains that networking is a powerhouse of a technique that will bring clients into law firms. The reason so many attorneys don’t see great results from networking is they do not do it consistently enough.
Networking is something that must occur consistently for it to produce results. Simply attending one event is not enough. You may get lucky and get a client or two from just one event, but you need more than a couple of clients to keep your firm growing and keep the well from running dry.
If you adopt a mindset of consistent networking, you will begin to experience the true power of networking. Your firm’s name will be on the lips of more professionals, and you will eventually start to see more business thrown your way.
One of the most powerful sources of new clients is the clients you are currently serving. Because you are already serving their legal needs, your clients have already developed a level of trust in your firm, and a rapport already exists.
But you should not approach all of your clients for referrals. As a law firm, you likely have an ideal client profile but serve the needs of many who do not exactly fit this profile.
In an ideal world, your roster of clients would be filled with the former. Hence, when seeking referrals from clients, you will want to only approach those clients who are ideal.
But approaching and asking a client for referrals is only part of the story. There should be some type of acknowledgment given to the referrer. Without acknowledging a client for referring other clients, the referrals will likely stop dead in their tracks after one or two clients are sent your way.
At the very least, consider sending a thank you card or note for the first one or couple of clients that make it to your firm by way of a referral. If the clients keep coming in from one source, you may consider thanking the client with a nominal gift card or another nominal present if the ethics rules in your jurisdiction allow it.
Consistent Social Media Marketing
As with networking, social media marketing is something you must do consistently. A one-off ad or marketing campaign about your firm may result in a few new clients but does nothing for your firm’s long-term growth trajectory.
However, consistent social media marketing is an excellent way to develop a steady stream of clients seeking your firm’s legal services.
Because attorneys are often quite busy with client affairs, it often makes sense for law firms to hire social media marketing experts to handle this aspect of their marketing objectives. The costs will be worth it once you see the fruits of the marketer’s efforts.
A firm could go weeks or months without seeing an extraordinary influx of clients. But always remember, it takes time to start seeing satisfactory client yields. And often, there are dry spells where it seems as if nothing is occurring.
However, it is important to know that consistent social media marketing is even more important for establishing your firm’s name as a player in the game during these downtimes.
Prospecting work often produces leads and potential clients before a client signs up for a firm’s services. For this reason, consistently following up on every lead and potential client contact is paramount to a firm’s efforts to bring in more clients.
However, many legal professionals wait for leads to convert into clients on their own, typically resulting in losing clients who decide to go elsewhere. Remember that potential clients in a sea of law firms need direction and reasons to choose one firm over another.
An effective marketing campaign and even a discussion with a potential client is enough to pique their interest in a law firm, but often, more is needed to turn them into a paying client, such as a follow-up call. A well-timed and placed follow-up call can quickly get a client off the fence and into your yard.
Let Woven Legal Help with Your Prospects
Woven Legal is all about helping firms thrive. We have been instrumental in the growth of many law firms of all sizes and are ready to help you explore your prospects for the future and bring in the clients and revenue you desire.
Contact us today to schedule a free discovery call and learn how Woven Legal can help.