Getting clients to go from interested prospects to loyal customers is the goal of every law firm. But to accomplish that goal, you must understand the sales funnel, how it operates and what you can do to help clients through that process. Let’s take a look at each phase of the sales funnel and explore how you can help clients transition from one phase to another.
The first phase of the sales funnel is awareness of your legal service. No matter how good you are as an attorney, no one will become your client if they’re not made aware of your existence. To move potential clients into the awareness phase of the sales funnel, you must consistently market your law firm—directory listings, direct mail, press releases, up-to-date website, blogs and a social media presence will all help the client move forward.
In the second phase of the sales funnel, clients do research on your law firm. You can help them move through this phase by making readily available in-depth knowledge about your legal services. Clearly list what practice areas you focus on, what type of clients you serve, and key benefits you provide to clients. You should also make available answers to FAQs as well as informational documents that can be easily emailed out to clients upon request.
No potential client will simply take your word for how good you are. Once they’ve moved from interest, they will step into the third phase—evaluation. During the evaluation phase, the potential client will compare you to other law firms offering similar services. If you want to pass their critical eye, you will need to provide evidence that you’re as good as or better than your competitors. Glowing reviews on your law firm, client testimonials, awards and positive press about your firm or the attorneys at your law firm will all help you leave a good impression on potential clients.
Once you pass the potential client’s evaluation, this is where they will make their decision. It’s up to you to make this phase easy. You should be responsive to client requests for meetings or additional information. You should be able to respond to potential inquiries within 24 or 48 hours maximum. You should also be willing to schedule an intake or consultation within a week. Your timely response to clients will help them move to the next phase—the purchase phase.
In the purchase phase, clients sign the attorney agreement and make payment. Getting them through this phase will require you to provide easy to understand agreements and payment terms. You should also make it easy for clients to make payment by offering several methods such as credit card, check or money order. The easier it is to pay you, the faster clients will make payment.
During this phase, clients will assess your legal service to decide if they want to do business with you and/or refer others to your law firm. To make this phase as painless as possible, you should ask for feedback while you’re still working on their case so that you can make adjustments if there is something wrong. If you’ve made adjustments based on client feedback, revaluation will likely be more positive.
Once you’ve moved a client through all the phases of the sales funnel, it will be easier to get their repeat business and the business they refer to you.