Think you don’t have time for “strategic planning” as part of your marketing process?
Then you’re probably throwing money out the window while your competitor is reading this to learn how to hold on to more of it and still grow his firm. Want to beat your competition at the legal intake marketing game? Read on.
Win at Marketing the Way You Win in Court
Your marketing efforts directly impact the quality of your incoming leads. Aiming for sheer call volume wastes valuable staff and attorney time, as well as precious marketing dollars. A relatively small amount of time invested in strategic planning will ensure your budget attracts quality leads that your legal intake staff can convert into quality clients.
Don’t Waste Money – Focus Your Legal Intake on the Right Metrics
Start by truly quantifying what your leads consisted of over the past year and which ones actually became clients. Without hard data, you are left to rely on iffy impressions that make it difficult to see important patterns and make significant improvements.
Gather specific numbers to identify:
- Where did your leads come from: referrals, website, a specific advertising campaign, etc.?
- What types of cases did prospects inquire about and what was the value of each new client by type of case?
- The total time it took from first contact to actually close on a new client?
- The source of your referrals (other firms, clients, etc.)?
- Your cost per lead for each type of advertising you did?
- Your cost per client for each type of advertising?
- The geographic locations of your leads and the time they were received (business hours, after-hours or weekends)? Are there times you may be losing leads?
Review the raw numbers you collected and analyze them. Look for revealing patterns by asking questions:
- Where did your most profitable clients come from (by type of advertising, type of case, etc.)? How could you better target these clients in the future?
- Are there some types of cases that you should no longer pursue because of poor profit margins (high overhead costs, low win rates or payouts, etc.)
- What types of clients made the most referrals? Why?
- What legal intake forms and processes did you use to successfully close on new clients? Were there important differences depending upon the type of case? Is everyone in your office using the same processes?
- Some advertising venues may have generated more leads than others, but were they qualified leads that you actually closed on? Should you stop some forms of advertising altogether and put that money into areas that performed better?
Use what you learn to aim your marketing efforts strategically
Armed with critical data, you can begin focusing marketing dollars on campaigns, case types, and processes that yield the type of qualified leads your firm wants more of. This may mean cutting your losses on old targets that are no longer performing well, and aggressively pursuing those that show the most promise.
Continue to collect prospect data and analyze it on a quarterly basis, so you can continually improve the performance of your marketing dollars and the quality of your prospects. Consider partnering with a professional telephone legal intake service with expertise in collecting and reporting this data. A good answering service for attorneys will be staffed by legal intake specialists who can help you capture, qualify and prioritize leads, schedule appointments, and deliver detailed, useful reports on a routine basis.
This blog was written by Laurie Leonard, the President of SUITE 1000, a U.S. based national telephone answering service, inbound call center and outsourced call center service. Her company has specialized in handling legal intake, sales leads, email lead response, appointment scheduling, customer service and help desk calls for over 20 years.