Referrals are the best way to grow your law practice. Referred clients are predisposed to like you and trust you. They already know what to expect in terms of price. They’re more likely to respect you and your team. Most small-firm lawyers get a large share of their business through referrals—but there’s more out there to be had!
Here are three reasons why you’re missing out on referrals, and some tips to help you fix it!
Every one of us is bombarded with information all day long. Text messages, email, social media, “breaking news,” and the list goes on. We simply don’t have enough space in our brains to retain everything. As a result, if you aren’t regularly staying in touch with your referral network, chances are that you’re slipping out of their mind. A great first impression isn’t enough, you need regular touchpoints to create top of mind awareness.
You’re Seen As A Commodity
Consumers have an endless list of resources to determine who they will hire. When a consumer does not realize the difference between a product or service, they will decide based on price. As we all know from our high school economics class, this makes you a commodity.
You’re Not Expert Enough
There is a reason that cliches such as “niches get riches” or “jack of all trades, master of none” exists. Simply put, the more focused you are the better. People want to work with an expert rather than a generalist. At the end of the day, if you attempt to be for everyone, you’ll end up being for no one.
So… what should you do about it?
It all begins with marketing yourself better by creating a premium brand around your law firm. What’s a brand? Well, a brand is what people say about you when you’re not in the room. It’s the very foundation that your overall marketing strategy should be built upon.
Elevate your brand by becoming the best at one thing. Define your focus for maximum profitability and client retention. We suggest focusing on a specific problem or type of client. You could even combine a type of client with a specific need (e.g. start-up ventures needing IP and patent protection). Once you’ve narrowed your focus, leverage your knowledge to set the right expectations with prospective and current clients.
Leverage strategic opportunities like local TV, speaking engagements, and hosting events or community workshops to differentiate yourself. Take advantage of online marketing tools like video FAQs, social media, and email marketing. Empower your clients to make smart decisions through educational content. These tools allow you to build authority, credibility, and expertise in your market. We call this the ACE formula for attorney marketing. As you begin to market yourself better, doors will open and more strategic opportunities will exist.
Lastly, keep in mind the frequency of each interaction and moment with your referral network. The weaker the interaction is, the harder it will be for people to remember and refer you. It’s the quality, depth, and time you spend with each referral source that will pay the most dividends. This could be in the form of face to face interaction or even a newsletter. Top-of-mind awareness is by far the most powerful tool in your toolbox. Create systems to keep yourself top-of-mind and you will see more referrals and repeat business.