How Most Attorneys Look for Leads
In a perfect world, lawyers and law firms wouldn’t need to prospect for leads. A steady flow of clients who are ready to retain legal services would contact your firm on a regular basis.
In the real world… prospecting for leads is a necessary evil. There are many ways to do so, and there are attorneys who find success with each of these common strategies:
- Content marketing
With that being said, it’s not always that easy to find quality leads that turn into paying clients! A lot of the time, it feels like you’re panning for gold — and that’s a time-consuming process that doesn’t positively impact your bottom line.
So how can you generate leads that are likely to sign a retainer? It all starts with knowing how to find the gold amidst all the dirt.
Lead Quality Matters
One good lead is better than two hundred bad ones. In fact, the two hundred bad leads will cost you more when you consider the time spent providing them with initial consultations, as well as the amount of time your staff spends on the initial screening and intake process.
Unfortunately, you don’t have a lot of control over who contacts you. But there are methods you can put into place to encourage your target clients to contact you and discourage bad fits before they even call your office.
The first step is to understand exactly what makes your dream clients right for you. What characteristics do they share? Marketing experts often stress the need for a client persona, and it’s a good strategy for attorneys as well. Once you know exactly what sort of person you’d like to attract, it becomes easier to figure out how to attract them.
But… you probably didn’t go to law school with the intention of becoming a marketing expert.
Your time has a lot of value to it, and we’re trying to save as much of it as we can. It’s often more cost-effective to outsource your lead generation to someone who’s an expert in the field. Fortunately, help is available that doesn’t require you to bring a new staff member on board!
Charging for Consultations
This goes against a lot of conventional wisdom about how law should be practiced, but charging for initial consultations can make good sense for your practice. Every attorney who offers free consultations has one or two (or three dozen) stories about consultations where they gave out valuable information and never heard back from the potential client again.
Your time has value. Stop giving it away for free! The potential clients who are likely to be scared away by paying for a consultation are often the ones that wouldn’t wind up signing with you anyway.
One way to encourage leads without offering free consultations is to apply the cost of the consultation to your retainer if they decide to sign with you. That way, you’re still offering something of value to those clients who are likely to sign with you, while discouraging people who are just looking for free legal advice.
Phone Pre-Screening of Leads
Here’s another way to weed out bad leads before they take up any of your time: Pre-screen your leads before offering that in-person consultation. A knowledgeable staff member can easily ask initial screening questions over the phone. That way, the only leads that take up your time are the ones that are likely to convert into paying clients.
Many of your law office’s administrative tasks can be performed by someone without a J.D. Make sure you’re not wasting your time doing tasks that aren’t the best use of your time and training.
Outsourcing Legal Administrative Tasks
A virtual legal receptionist or a virtual legal assistant may be exactly what you need. By choosing one of these options instead of hiring someone locally, you’ll have a skilled staff member who understands the needs of the legal field. If you choose to work with service providers like Back Office Betties, you also won’t have to worry about paying for benefits or covering leaves or sick time! Because we think a legal staffing solution should solve your problems, not create more of them.
Schedule a call with our Growth Solutions Strategist today to see how we can help you take extra tasks off your plate and improve the quality of your leads at the same time!