Transitioning Your Law Firm’s Future Client Interaction
The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted nearly every industry and part of American society. This country’s law firms have been facing unprecedented challenges with no clear end in sight. Like other industries, lawyers are innovating ways to continue serving clients from a distance by leveraging technology.
Most client journeys begin online with a client realizing they have a legal obstacle and then hitting the search engines for some answers. But, traditionally, lawyers’ transition to face-to-face contact for consultations and updates. While that might have changed temporarily due to COVID-19, there is a good chance that those changes will become permanent to help satisfy the wants and needs of their clients.
Focusing on the Client Experience
The “client experience” is a fairly new buzz phrase in the business world, but it is something that the legal industry should be paying particular attention to, especially in these trying times. According to Bain and Company, businesses that do well at creating an excellent customer experience grow revenues from 4%-8% above their industry average.
But just about every industry is feeling some sort of disruption due to COVID-19 and other related factors. This only makes emphasizing the client experience even more critical in the coming months and years.
How you represent your firm will impact its success. While you can distinguish yourself through a superior website and social media presence, you also need to deliver an exceptional and consistent client experience at every stage of your client’s journey.
While your firm might be struggling to adjust a remote work environment, your clients may prefer this approach over the traditional one. If you are going to transition to a more remote business model, what is the best way to do so efficiently and effectively so that you can satisfy the needs of your clients?
Tools to Interact With Clients Remotely
Since the pandemic began, courthouses and law offices have closed their doors out of an abundance of caution. Hearings and depositions have been postponed or adjusted, and in-person client intakes have stopped. The good news is that many law firms have continued to do a brisk business, thanks to technology.
Whether you have the resources in place currently or need to implement them, there are a variety of tools available to help your firm interact with clients remotely. If you haven’t started using these tools yet, it is probably a good time to learn about your options.
Scheduling Client Meetings
After potential clients learn about your firm’s services on social media and your website, the next step is to contact you to schedule a consultation. While they can still call, why not give them other options that are available 24/7?
One type of technology that many law firms have adopted is chatbots. Having Live Chat Services available on your site is a convenient and popular option. And this feature alone can increase conversion rates by up to 40%.
Another app you can use to schedule client meets is Calendly. This popular scheduling/calendar app will connect with up six of your current calendars, check your availability, and allow clients to schedule meetings in spots that you make available.
Video Conferencing Apps
For remote consultation and client update appointments, you can use video conferencing app like Zoom, Google Hangouts, or GoToMeeting. Most of these apps will have an option to send automatic invitations and links to participants, which makes scheduling simple.
Digital Communication Apps
You can also use a digital communication app to stay in touch with employees who might be working remotely. A popular choice is Slack. The program works in real-time and integrates with other digital communication tools like Calendly and Zoom.
Best Practices for Remote Consultations With Clients
Conducting remote consultations might be an adjustment, but there is no reason they can’t work as well as a face-to-face meeting. The key is to create an environment of professionalism and trust. In most cases, you are already delivering convenience because virtual meetings save time and effort for your clients, which is why many favor them.
By implementing these best practices for remote conferences, you will be able to deliver a better client experience.
Learn and Test the Technology
The start time for your first online meeting is not the time to learn how to work Zoom or some other virtual meeting app. Spend some time watching a few online tutorials to get the lay of the land and then test out the technology on colleagues or friends before going “live.”
Set the Stage for Your Meeting
Don’t leave your client waiting. Make sure you are the first person on the call and pay attention to your surroundings and appearance. Do they look professional? It is a good idea for you to use the video feature on your call but give participants the option to use video or just audio.
Be Engaging and Relatable
Just because you are meeting virtually, it does not mean your interaction must be intimidating or dry. Ask them how they are holding up after an accident and in the face of the current health crisis. Share some brief personal insights before getting down to business.
Follow Your Agenda
Have a list of key talking points for your meeting so that you can stay on track. Explain any relevant procedures, such as using Adobe Acrobat and DocuSign, for retainer agreements. Make sure to outline the next steps to move a client’s case forward.
As you test and implement these measures for remote consultations, consider how they might continue to serve some or all your clients in a post-COVID environment.
Contact Sundown Legal Marketing Today
The legal industry is likely to be permanently transformed and move even further into the digital world by this latest crisis. As this pandemic ends, we can expect that law firms will have plenty of business to deal with through both new and old cases.
Law firms should continue to assess and strategize during the COVID-19 pandemic. These transitions and adjustments will put your attorneys in a better position and help you deliver a better client experience. And a large part of this is taking your digital presence to the next level.
Sundown Legal Marketing specializes in helping law firms assess their current position and develop a strategy to reach more current and prospective clients through various online channels. Contact us today at (800) 864-1764 or online for a free assessment and to learn more about our services.