When was the last time your law practice really examined the experience it was providing clients? If it’s been so long ago you can’t remember, or you’ve never really taken the opportunity to do so, you could be setting your firm up for disaster.
These days, legal consumers not only demand results from the attorneys they work with, but an enjoyable experience interacting with their firm as well. Lawyers who don’t view the client’s experience as a priority are quickly becoming dinosaurs in today’s world.
In this post, we’ll explain what attorneys can do to make sure they’re delivering an ideal customer journey for their new prospects and clients. We’ll also discuss why lawyers would be wise to invest in help from a law firm receptionist service to make sure they’re consistently able to meet their clients’ needs.
Why The Client Experience Matters So Much
A recent Forbes article revealed that 86% of buyers will actually pay more for a great customer experience. As much as some clients may say they want results from their lawyer above all else, it’s important to remember that every client is still human. And as humans we all want to be heard and feel respected. When we feel that a business treats us poorly, it can be almost impossible to put emotion aside, and just focus on the results or product that we were given. On the flip side, when we feel a business goes above and beyond in trying to meet our needs, we tend to be much more understanding of mistakes and less than desired results.
Why has the client experience become such a bigger deal over the past few decades? Well the truth is consumers have always cared about the experience they’ve had with businesses they work with, but now they are much more empowered. Thanks to online search engines, it takes only seconds for people to find options for law firms in their area. So if a consumer calls your firm for the first time and doesn’t like what they hear (or doesn’t get a response at all), they can immediately just move on to calling another firm for help.
The internet has also made it significantly easier for clients to have their voices heard. In the past, if a client was treated poorly by a law office, they would just tell their family and a few friends and it would have a very minimal long-term effect on the firm. Now clients that feel they have been mistreated can head online and publish a review of the law practice for all potential future clients to see. Enough of these types of reviews has the power to turn a firm into an online pariah that no one wants to work with. Prioritizing your clients’ experience with your office is no longer just a good practice, it’s a necessity for staying in business.
How A Law Firm Receptionist Service Can Help
One of the biggest things clients demand from the firms they work with these days is availability. In this area, a lot of law offices have been struggling. According to data from Law Firm Technology Today, 35% of the time, phone calls from prospective clients are not answered. The site also revealed that 42% of the time, law firms take three or more days to reply to a voicemail or web-generated form fill from a prospective client. These numbers make it clear that a large percentage of firms out there aren’t prioritizing their clients’ experience, and that there’s a great deal of opportunity for the law practices that are willing to.
The best way to ensure that your firm is always available to new prospects, is by investing in a 24/7 law firm receptionist service like Answering Legal. Our service provides law firms with a highly trained virtual receptionist team that is available to answer phone calls on their behalf at any time. With Answering Legal in place, new prospects and existing clients will never reach your voicemail again, and will instead always get the chance to speak with a live person.
How Answering Legal Improves Interactions With New Leads
The first impression you make on new leads is crucially important, and you definitely do not want that impression to be made by your voicemail. Getting sent to voicemail on their first call to your firm will set off all sorts of red flags for potential clients, and will usually lead them to the conclusion that your firm isn’t reliable. Having a less than experienced receptionist or an overworked attorney answering calls could also lead to new prospects’ first call to your firm being their last call.
With the support of our virtual receptionist team, law firms can show all of their new leads that they’re always ready to help and that they actually care about resolving their important matters in a timely fashion. Our virtual receptionists are schooled in proper phone etiquette, experienced in talking with distressed legal consumers and are experts on performing legal intakes.
You can count on our receptionists to let your new prospects know that quality help is on the way, while they efficiently collect all of your new lead’s personal and case information. Lawyers will also have the option to be transferred in for all calls from potential clients. In any case, you’ll be giving new prospects an immediate response to their call for help, almost completely diminishing the chances of them abandoning your firm for a competitor.
How Answering Legal Improves Relationships With Existing Clients
Consumers hate being left in the dark, and when they have pressing questions or serious concerns about their legal matters, the worst thing you can do is send them to voicemail. In fact, it’s this kind of behavior that will often turn clients against your firm, and eventually lead to them leaving you a frightening one-star review.
With Answering Legal, your existing clients will always get a live representative of your firm to speak with. Our receptionists will actively listen to your clients talk about their issues, then offer to pass a message along to the attorney right away. That message will be sent over to you via text and email, so you can check it from any location. Once you see the message, you’ll know how quickly you need to call the client back, and won’t risk accidentally neglecting them during a time of need.
Ready to try out a law firm receptionist service for your firm? Get started with your free 7-day trial of Answering Legal by filling out this form or calling us at 631-686-9700.