Law Firm Management and Practice Growth Blog Great Law Practices
Home Testimonials Bookstore Contact
Steve Riley Coaches Attorneys Who Want To Grow Their Practices 4 Ways To Contact Steve

Yes, you CAN ask for referrals

October 13, 2017

Filed under: Marketing,Practice Growth,Referral Sources — admin @ 4:41 pm

If you own a law firm, you need to make asking for and receiving great referrals a daily practice.

I’ve often heard a deep sigh of discomfort from lawyers when the topic of asking for referrals comes up. But I’m here to tell you it doesn’t need to be uncomfortable.

If you are doing great work, of course, that will speak for itself. Many clients will be grateful and eagerly spread the word about their satisfaction with your firm. But what about the people who hired you, got what they needed, but fail to mention your firm to their friends and family when the need for a skilled attorney arises?

It’s a fantasy to think every client will remember to recommend you. So, it’s your job to remind them. This can be done in a manner that doesn’t feel like selling or desperation.

Asking for a referral is a stumbling block for many lawyers, but it’s not impossible to overcome. It’s as simple as changing your mindset. This is where your marketing strategy comes into play.

ReferralsBe strategic in asking for referrals

Pay attention to where your clients are coming from. One way to do that is to implement a “Thank You” program for referrals.

Engage with your referral network, meet with them, reach out to them on a regular basis. Whether that engagement comes via an email, a phone call, or meeting over coffee, touching base regularly with referral sources strengthens your bond and will reward your practice in ways that set you apart from the competition.

It’s less about being sales-y than about controlling the narrative of your interactions with clients. This is where many lawyers tell me that they hate marketing and throw up their hands. However, effortlessly asking for referrals and setting follow-up meetings are skills that can be practiced and perfected.

It boils down to this – if you are exactly where you want to be, then keep doing what you are doing. However, if growth is what you seek, you must step out of your comfort zone. Set yourself up for the win!

4 ways law firm owners can maximize holiday marketing

September 19, 2017

Filed under: Marketing,Money,Practice Growth,Practice Management,Referral Sources — admin @ 12:22 pm

Fall is here and it’s time to begin implementing your law firm’s holiday marketing plan.

Wait, though. You do have a holiday marketing plan, right?

If you do, great! Let me know what you plan to do and the results you’re shooting for this year. I’d love to compare ideas.

But if you don’t, then I’ve got some great tips below to get you started.

Committing to creating your firm’s holiday marketing plan goes a long way to strengthen your law firm’s referral network and grow your practice. In doing so, you can enjoy the season and strengthen your business relationships.

This isn’t about buying the biggest and most audacious gifts to stand out from the crowd. It’s more about acknowledging your practice’s top referral sources and strengthening those relationships. I have heard ideas that range from law firm owners dressed as Santa Claus delivering gifts to throwing parties with eggnog and snacks. It’s all about what you feel is the best way to say thank you.

Here are some ideas to help you enjoy the holidays while building relationships for the year ahead:

  1. You may feel like you don’t have enough time to do some or any holiday marketing. If you have someone you can delegate these tasks to, do it. If not, hire a holiday marketing assistant. Developing and implementing your marketing takes time, but the payoff can be invaluable to your practice.
  2. Do more than just send everyone on your firm’s address list a holiday card that will potentially go unread. Take an opportunity to acknowledge top referral sources and key clients who generated revenue. Remember, a referral source who feels your gratitude can add thousands of dollars’ worth of business in the years to come. Research what these specific people may like. This makes it possible to say thank you throughout the year if you don’t want to save it for the holidays. This is a great way to show key clients and colleagues their value to your firm!
  3. While you may not want to hand deliver gifts to your referral sources and clients, there is still an opportunity to set up a face-to-face meeting with referral sources. A simple lunch or dinner can strengthen bonds with a valuable client or referral source. In addition, there is nothing like having a clients who become your friends. They become rabid fans and believe in what you do. That kind of marketing is a cornerstone of growth.
  4. The end of the year can be hectic. But it is also a good time to focus on the following year’s goals. Be strategic. Do you have a marketing plan in place for the next year? Are you comfortable with where your firm is going? What changes would you like to implement for the future? So, set aside some time to set next year’s goals – everything from doubling client referrals to growing your social media following. Write it all down. Plan your work and work your plan!

I want to reinforce here that your extra efforts on holiday marketing can be the foundation for next year’s marketing goals. Set yourself up to win!

Beyond what I’ve shared above, there are many options for maximizing marketing and time during the holidays. The keys are to be thoughtful, sincere and focused. This bit of extra effort pays off in increased revenue and good will toward your firm.

Don’t want growth? Keep thinking about it

August 15, 2017

Filed under: Marketing,Money,Practice Growth,Practice Management — admin @ 12:03 pm

I don’t procrastinate, ever. I just think about stuff for a very, very, VERY long time. I don’t actually act on anything.  I’ve found thinking about things to be very beneficial and recommend this strategy to small law firm owners and solo practitioners as a way of protecting their egos.

Let’s pretend I have a new marketing idea. All I am willing to do is think, “For this to be perfect outcome, what would have to happen?”

For the outcome to be ideal, which is what I want, the best thing to do is to think about it, strategize it, plan it and then think about it some more.  All the permutations and obstacles to my new idea fill my mind. And then, I spend time thinking about those.

Here are the key benefits of the “think about it” strategy:

  1. You can never be wrong. If you don’t take action, then you can always be right.
  2. You can keep your opinion, assumptions, and beliefs. Of course, action and actually testing an idea out is where the rubber meets the road – and that’s where all learning occurs – but by continuing to think about it, you could always just adjust your plan.
  3. I don’t have to learn anything (See No. 2). I mean, why bother? Learning requires risk and can be very frustrating. Acting is too ambitious.
  4. You don’t have to be accountable. This is a big one. If you keep thinking about it and don’t take any action, then no one can hammer you because you took action.
  5. You don’t risk energy or money. Sure, you waste some time thinking things over, but it’s totally worth it, right?

The truest thing I can say about the results of the “think about it” method is that nothing ever changes. Life stays the same. Your complaints of today will be your complaints of tomorrow. You know them well. They are like old friends. Your weight stays the same. Your fitness stays the same. And, so do your income and results.  There is no growth.

I think Abraham Maslow had it wrong. He said, “You will either step forward into growth, or you will step backward into safety.”

I love it. Safety is where it is at, right?

If you don’t want to grow your practice, then use the “think about it” strategy to avoid any form of risk, loss of money, embarrassment, or failure.

And, go one step further: Take no action from this blog. Instead, think about growth for a long, long time. It is a lot safer.

[In case you read this post and you’re not sure if I’m being serious, just think about it.]

Lawyers: How to Get Referrals from Existing Clients

May 5, 2017

Filed under: Client Issues,Marketing,Practice Growth,Referral Sources — Tags: — admin @ 5:24 pm

When you think of your clients, do a few favorites come to mind? Do you know why they’re your favorites? Did they come from referrals? Have you taken time to write down the characteristics of these A+ clients to create a client profile?

If so, that’s the first step to creating your Clients-Referring-Clients strategy. If not, it’s time you did. But that’s just the beginning.

A Strategic Mindset is a Must

Having a strategic mindset around how you are going to get referrals from existing clients is a necessity to ensure that your client base grows at a steady or speedy rate. Most lawyers don’t have any type of strategy to gain these types of referrals, but you can by following the steps outlined in this one hour recorded webinar I led for ElderLawAnswers called Getting Referrals from Existing Clients.

How to Improve Your Success Rate

ReferralsIn this webinar recording, you’ll learn the steps it takes to up your client-referring-clients success rate.

Here are four reasons why you might not be getting many client referrals yet…

  • You might not be paying attention to where your business comes from
  • You just haven’t learned how to create this type of strategy yet
  • You don’t want to ask for the business or turn clients off by being too sales-y
  • You feel that clients will come naturally and that you don’t need to make an entire strategy to attract them

If that’s you, don’t fret, that’s how most attorneys think. But you’re no typical lawyer if you’re looking for ways to enhance your practice.

Steps to Get More Referrals

Here’s the short list of to-dos to get you started, but if you want to really up your strategy, then watch the full webinar for tips on building out each of these steps to create a strategic plan that is sure to bring in more business.

Step #1: Create a client profile that describes your A+ client

Step #2: Devise a “Thank You for Your Referral” system

Step #3: Practice TOMA (Top of Mind Awareness), so your clients don’t forget you

Step #4: Hold client-only events

Step #5: Practice the art of asking and get your team to do the same

Step #6: Meet your client’s referral network

Step #7: Plan your firm’s community activity engagement efforts

Mistakes to Eliminate

Part of putting together this strategic plan is to also eliminate the mistakes you’re currently making that may interfere with your progress. Here are just a few to be aware of:

  • Avoid using a virtual answering service. Hiring the right receptionist who will build good relationships with your clients is essential.
  • Stop attracting B and C-rated clients and learn how to attract A+ clients
  • Don’t be too sales-y when asking for referrals

If you know what your clients want most and what your law firm does best, then you’ll have the winning combination to create satisfied clients who will bring in A+ referrals.

Learn more on the on-demand webinar now.

Attorneys: Do you want to grow or sell your law firm?

April 18, 2017

Filed under: Money,Practice Growth,Selling a Law Firm,Succession Planning — admin @ 12:03 pm

Being a great attorney alone won’t significantly grow your practice’s revenue. And, studying to become the most certified lawyer in your market won’t add value to your practice if you’re hoping to eventually sell it.

However, what does grow revenue and what will position your firm for a profitable sale is creating a strategic business plan at one or both of the two Atticus workshops offered this summer in Orlando.

Double Your Revenue How to Build Your Law Firm for SaleAtticus has taught the Double Your Revenue™ workshop for over a decade to great results. Graduates have doubled and occasionally tripled revenue. At a minimum, some increased by 40%. But no one did it by thinking about it. They took action. You will create your own strategic plan to double your revenue without increasing your stress or overhead.

And, Atticus’ Florida Bar CLE-accredited How to Build Your Law Firm for Sale workshop shows you what it takes to transform your practice into a profitable business and what buyers are really looking for. Determine your practice’s actual value today and create a profitability plan to increase the firm’s worth for a future sale date.

You can find out more about each workshop by clicking on their names above. If you’re ready to register, click here.

Registration for each workshop is $995 for the first attorney and $795 for each additional attorney or staff member from your firm.

Enroll in both workshops and Atticus will deduct $300 off the first attorney’s registration cost, and then you pay only $1,690 to attend both Double Your Revenue ™ and How to Build Your Law Firm for Sale™.

Commit to spending two days away from your office to work strategically ON your practice rather than working blindly IN it. Attend these workshops and implement Atticus’ tools and strategies to make an incredible difference in your life, your team, and your profitability.

Older Posts »



       © Great Law Practices