Your legal intake process is your firm’s first impression. Every one of your new leads will experience legal intake when they call into your firm, and that’s why it’s so important to get it right.
On top of that, legal intake is one of the few tried-and-true lead capturing tools law firms have. While there are plenty of lead generation strategies out there, there are few ways to secure leads that do the job as well as legal intake.
Legal intake is the foundation of your firm. It isn’t what brings in new business, but it’s what makes sure new business stays with your firm rather than calling any of the other attorneys on your list. That’s why below we’re going to go into detail on why you should make sure your legal intake process is rock solid.
Maximize Your New Lead Conversion Rate
First and foremost, standardizing your legal intake process will secure more new leads. It’s the first thing prospective clients experience when they reach your firm, and you only get one chance to make a first impression.
When a new lead gets high-quality, professional customer service, they feel like they’re important to your firm. By the end of every call, new leads should feel like they’ve already begun the process of hiring your firm. That’s why you should standardize your legal intake process; when that high-quality customer service is standardized, every new lead will feel like they’re the most important part of your day.
This is the primary function of legal intake, and it’s important to get it right. You should make sure you have a script, and that your phone-answering staff have practiced it until they know it backwards and forwards. That way every caller gets the same lead-capturing experience.
While they perform a legal intake, your receptionist will be filling out a form with all the information they gather. It’s important, however, that prospective clients don’t feel like they’re answering a survey; they need to feel like they’re having a conversation with someone who cares about their issue. New leads are usually anxious, and your legal intake should make them feel like they don’t have to worry anymore because they found the right firm for them, not that they’re being led through a standardized process.
Always Have The Information You Need To Seal The Deal
Even with great lead capturing, your new leads still need to talk to you, the attorney, to actually hire you. If you’re spending too much time searching for a new lead’s contact information, you might lose them to another firm. Your follow up needs to be swift and effective; making sure you have all the information you need — and that the information is organized — will save you time and help you secure leads.
If you’ve ever looked at a prospective client’s file and needed more information, your legal intake process needs work. The last thing you want to hear is “I already explained this to your receptionist.” That makes new leads feel like they aren’t your top priority, and may drive them to find a firm that would make them their top priority.
That’s why you need to make sure you’re collecting any and all information you need to determine whether or not prospective clients are a good fit for your firm. You know what that information is better than anyone, and it changes depending on your legal discipline. Criminal defense lawyers will ask entirely different questions from bankruptcy attorneys, but the legal intake process will still be serving the same purpose.
Make Sure Your Client Experience Is Consistent
Finally, cementing your legal intake process will ensure that every new lead gets the same quality service. When you’re providing the same experience to all your callers, you’ll cut down on bad reviews and increase your five-star reviews. Clients who are happy with your customer service are essential for your firm’s discoverability online, and will help you with lead generation.
You’ll also be maximizing your firm’s potential. When your firm’s first impression is always operating at 100 percent, you’ll feel that in every other part of your firm. Your new leads will be less impatient once they’ve described their legal issue and been assured you’ll get back to them as soon as possible. All the information you need to follow up will be easily accessible, which will save you time you can spend on billable work, for example.
If possible, you should aim to have your legal intake available 24/7. New leads hate voicemail, so ensuring that your firm’s legal intake is always available will not only secure you more leads, but it’ll make your late-night callers happier too. And while you’re at it, you should make sure your legal intake process is bilingual, so you can provide the same level of service to your clients whether they speak English or Spanish.
Answering Legal Has Your First Impression Covered
The easiest way to gain access to phenomenal lead capturing, organized message taking, and a client experience that will earn you repeat business is to hire Answering Legal. Our virtual receptionists go through months of training to become legal intake experts, so your firm’s first impression will be in good hands, and you won’t have to worry about training or quality control.
If you’d like a no-strings-attached look at what our answering service can do for your firm, check out our free trial below. As part of setting up your account, we’ll help you come up with a script for your legal intake, either by using one of our hundreds of sample scripts, personalizing one of those samples, or coming up with a script yourself.
Ready to upgrade to rock-solid legal intake? Click here or call 631-686-9700 to sign up for our free trial. For a limited time, we’re offering firms that sign up with our service their first 400 minutes free.