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One of the easiest—and perhaps most overlooked—ways to get new cases is to ramp up your referral strategy. It’s widely accepted that more new business comes from referrals than any other source, with the New York Times reporting that up to 65% may be garnered this way.
In marketing for law firms that means starting to understand how your attorneys can effectively talk to, incent and help satisfied clients share their experiences to bring in new cases. Nielsen has shown that people are four times more likely to “buy” when referred by a friend. Think of those friends—your former clients—as a gold mine waiting to be tapped.
One of the greatest benefits of legal referral-marketing strategy is it doesn’t have to cost a lot and can quickly pay for itself even after a single recommendation. The key is employing proven tactics to build momentum behind your referral campaign. Once rolling, it can take on a life of its own, making your obligation to new business development a lot lighter. Let’s touch on some ways to start prospecting for, communicating with and leveraging your existing clients in the short and long term.
Manage your relationships
One of the quickest ways to activate your database is to launch a focused customer relationship management (CRM) campaign. This legal marketing channel is typically anchored around regular email (eCRM) blasts to the addresses you’ve already collected when people come in for legal advice or contact your firm online.
Automated platforms make referral marketing simple. Remember, though, it’s imperative to make your content relevant and meaningful—not too salesy—and send an appropriate amount of digital communication, as not to inundate clients and turn them off to your attorneys altogether. Share news on an interesting mass tort, a big case with a positive community message or a new refer-a-friend program. Staying connected to prior clients is the only way to remain top of mind when friends ask for a legal referral.
Superior social sharing
Social platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn have exploded in the last few years, and there’s no better way to market your legal brand—the story of your practice, attorneys and successes—than to let former clients share it for you. As Network Affiliates’ social media strategist Emily Frickey touched on recently, the “power of viral” is undeniable: One of every 13 people on Earth is on Facebook, and in just the next 20 minutes, 1 million links will be shared on Facebook alone.
However, legal practices need to encourage people to share. A Texas Tech study showed that 83% of consumers are willing to refer after a positive experience—yet only 29% actually do. That means your office could benefit greatly from working with your advertising agency to design a social strategy now to covert that precious 54%.
Keys to social success include making the content you do produce easy to share with one click; encouraging personal story sharing through simple incentives or charitable campaign tie-ins; and quickly responding to both positive and negative reviews in a helpful and insightful way.
Want to take advantage of more legal marketing referral opportunities and leverage the people who already support you? We can help – call us today! (888) 461-1016