Stephen Fairley, The Rainmaker Institute – Educate Your Clients About Who Makes a Good Referral

Have you ever wondered why your clients don’t send you more referrals?  According to Stephen Fairley, CEO of The Rainmaker Institute, the number one reason why attorneys do not get more referrals from their clients is lack of education.  If you are a lawyer, you have most likely not educated your clients as to who makes a good referral for you. Educating your clients about referrals is a process.

I interviewed Stephen recently on one of our monthly coaching calls. I thought I'd share some of the highlights of that interview here.

Stephen Fairley says that the education process begins at the first instant that your clients say, “yes,” to working with you.  Most often the peak relationship with your clients is right at the moment they hire you.   Sometimes, it only goes downhill from there.  However, in the beginning, when your client has signed an agreement and retained you, you are giving him or her something that was lacking before.  You have given your client hope that things can be different, whether that means a better life, a better start or a new beginning.  The client knows at this point that you can help.

You can start educating your clients by providing them with a packet of information.  Don’t mistake this packet for a form that asks for demographic information or an agreement.  The information packet can be in a presentation folder, portfolio binder or whatever you choose.  The important thing is that it provides them with essential information.  You can include your press releases, some local media pieces you have been quoted in, an audio CD, DVD or other materials.

Your information packet should also include a letter that continues with the education approach.  It can be a thank you letter that makes a statement, such as “we want you to know that we will be with you, step by step, all along the way.”  Mention in the letter that you build your business through referrals from trusted, valued clients and if they know anyone in need of legal assistance to contact you.  You should include an extra brochure and business card that your clients can give to a family member, friend or colleague. 

Be sure to focus on the benefits that you offer when educating your clients.  According to Stephen Fairley, people buy value, not services.  You want them to know that you have their solution.

By taking the time and effort to educate your clients as to who makes a great referral, you can build your client base and get more of the cases you want.

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Ben Glass
Ben is a nationally recognized expert in attorney marketing and the owner of Great Legal Marketing.