When it comes to cultivating potential law firm clients, one of the most important things a lawyer can do is simply to follow up with prospects who have already “raised their hands”—giving that person an occasional phone call, or sending him your monthly newsletter, is a simple enough task, and it has potentially huge returns if that individual chooses you as his attorney.
Why Is it Important to Stay in Touch with Prospective Clients?
What can you accomplish by following up with your marketing prospects? Well, here are three things, just to start:
- You're building a relationship of trust. Most people have a very dim view of attorneys, assuming that they pounce on potential clients only at times of great distress (say, waylaying an accident victim in the parking lot of a hospital). By staying in touch with prospects in a non-threatening way, you can show that you're NOT one of those lawyers who should be avoided at all costs.
- You're keeping your name fresh in the contact's mind. Most people are so buried beneath the weight of their daily tasks—work, grocery shopping, taking care of their kids—that they're likely to lose track of all but the most important facts. By keeping a prospective client in the loop, you improve the odds that he'll remember your name when he actually finds himself in need of a lawyer.
- You're building the loyalty of your prospects and contacts. Most lawyers don't take the time to follow up with potential clients; the simple fact that you choose to do so will make that person all the more loyal when the time comes for him to hire a lawyer. (Of course, he ultimately may not choose to hire you, but at least he's more likely to give you a call and find out what you can do for him!)
Remember: A Prospect Will Contact You Only When He's Good and Ready
No one ever hires an attorney because he thinks it would be a good idea to have one around, “just in case.” The fact is that prospective clients will only give you a call when they're in immediate need of a lawyer—and they will only remember your name if you have already made an effort to stay in touch with them and let them know you're available.