What’s in a plan?
April 3, 2014
When we write a law firm marketing plan for a corporate, transactional or defense firm, we always survey clients to determine why, among other things, they retained the firm originally, why they keep doing business with the firm, what they expect of the firm’s lawyers and what the firm might improve upon.
The results drive the marketing goals we establish, one of which is often to develop a way for more attorneys in the firm to know more about the clients’ business, not more about their clients’ legal issues, more about their businesses, their products, processes, competition and markets. The clients want this, almost universally.
Clients also routinely say they want informal non-billable meetings with their lawyers to talk about their relationship with the firm. Our lawyers tell us they find these meetings often slip from their schedule– something we say is a bit like being married and just not coming home nights. Don’t be surprised if you find someone else sleeping in what you thought was your bed.
Recently, Sally Schmidt, one of the pioneers of legal services marketing, wrote an article about these meetings and obtaining client feedback. It includes language you can use in an email or in a phone call or voicemail to set up these informal feedback meetings. See it here http://www.attorneyatwork.com/get-feedback-clients/
We commonly repeat our clients surveys of a firm’s entire client base every three years. With the kind of informal feedback program in place like Sally describes, which is one of the 50 or so tactics on our proprietary marketing best practices checklist, our client scores for service satisfaction always reveal marked improvement over time. Those score increases are heartening but not surprising. The reason: consistent execution of a law firm marketing plan over a period of several years almost invariably increases partner profits– the survey results are felt where it matters most to our clients, in the wallet.