We really can’t stress enough how important it is to take care of your clients after you’ve completed your initial “transaction” with them.
Our Co-Founder and President, Robert Armstrong noted recently how incredible is it that a member of your community – someone who doesn’t know you:
- Said “Yes” to your marketing piece
- Said “Yes” to attending one of your seminars
- Showed up to the seminar and said “Yes” to a private consultation meeting with you
- Kept that meeting with you and said “Yes” to working with you, agreeing to your fees and other Client Engagement Standards*
- Followed through, kept their subsequent appointments with you, and said “Yes” to having you complete their estate plan
All your marketing, relationship building, and client care efforts worked! To have a total stranger say “Yes” to you and your law firm at least five times is a big deal!
So why on earth would you complete your transaction with that client, and then never plan to see them again until death or disability kicks in (if even then!)?
Client loyalty is the Holy Grail for law firms. Not only do loyal clients serve as a reliable continued source of revenue, they also refer new clients your way. So, keeping them as raving fans in this in this era of ever-changing communications channels is critically, super-duper, top-of-the-priority-lists kind of important.
A 2017 American Marketing Association study uncovered two pretty interesting sets of data:
- There are two different types of drivers when it comes loyal customers:
- Satisfaction: These customers are loyal because they are satisfied with a company’s performance over time. They are familiar with the company and know the company delivers consistently good performance. They feel comfortable, so there’s no motivation for them to change.
- Commitment: These people are much more involved with a company to which they are loyal. They have an emotional attachment. They tell others about the company, essentially serving as a “brand ambassador”.
It’s no secret that the goal of your law firm should be to develop a committed group of clients who have an emotional bond with your firm, tell others about it, and feel like they couldn’t imagine being without you. You’re “their guy/gal”. No questions asked.
- There are four variables that drive client loyalty and, when all four boxes are ticked, they lead to some seriously committed clients.
- You’re Dependable. Clients want a law firm that always delivers on what they say they’ll do, meet agreed to expectations, and can be trusted.
- You’re Just Plain Better. Committed clients have no question in their mind that their law firm is just plain “better” than any other they have the choice to work with, and brag that their law firm is “the only one that does what it does.” That’s what we call a transformational experience, eh?
- You’re Active on Social Media. I mean, we keep telling you this one, guys, and here’s some additional proof. It’s easier for clients to stay connected with you and share information about you with others if you have a consistent and engaging online presence. Make your website outstanding, and pick one Social Media platform to start with and just commit to it.
- You Have an Emotional Connection with Them. Clients stick to brands they connect with emotionally. If your purpose and your WHY strike some (positive) emotional response in people and give them something to relate to, they’ll stick by you for life.
Creating an army of committed clients starts with getting clear about why you’re here and how you’re going to make a difference. Delivering on that in a really outstanding way that makes a notable difference to your clients is what makes them feel good about being a part of your clan. And staying connected to them long-term is what makes the difference between being a transaction-based law firm or a relationship-based law firm. Which will you be?
*By the way – if you’re not using Client Engagement Standards already, stay tuned. Next week I’ll be back with some top-notch ideas about how to make sure everyone knows what to expect when a new client retains you.
Practice Building Consultant
American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc.
9444 Balboa Avenue, Suite 300
San Diego, California 92123
Phone: (858) 453-2128