White Paper: Failing At The Finish Line

We’ve all seen someone choke in sports. The Seattle Seahawks seemed on the verge of victory in last year’s Super Bowl, but one bad play call at the end turned a certain win into a catastrophic loss. Greg Norman seemed to have the 1996 Masters in the bag – until he didn’t.

Sometimes even the pros can do everything right, then inexplicably fall apart when it matters most.

It turns out attorneys are no different. Time and again, I’ve seen law firms invest significant effort and finances developing savvy marketing campaigns that drive traffic to their websites or phone calls to their law firms, only to drop the ball when it comes time to turn that prospective client into a paying one.

It all comes down to intake – the processes a law firm uses to collect and manage leads, with the goal of converting them into clients. Intake is an essential function of any successful legal business, and one that is often mismanaged or underdeveloped. What’s worse, our research shows that most attorneys think they’re actually doing a good job at intake. The sad truth is that their perceptions simply don’t match the reality.

In FindLaw’s white paper, “Failing At The Finish Line: How Law Firms Lose Prospective Clients At The Front Door”, we reveal the alarming statistics surrounding law firm intake practices. Like the fact that one-third of voicemail messages go at least 24 hours before receiving a call back. By the way, those numbers get even worse for email messages.

Far more than a customer service letdown, this paper runs the numbers to illustrate the real world impact that poor intake can have on your law firm’s bottom line.

The good news is, intake isn’t impossible to improve. “Failing At The Finish Line” also includes a healthy dose of good advice on how to instill a sense of urgency, tenacity and empathy within your law firm. Suggestions for solid data collection practices are also included to help your employees (or yourself) learn from the past and convert more leads into clients in the future.

“Failing At The Finish Line” is available for download here. I hope you find it challenging and revealing as you consider how to improve your law firm’s business practices.

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