In most jurisdictions, attorneys are more than happy to honor referral fees for new clients. Ignoring for the moment each State’s requirements to earn an attorney’s fee or to be considered co-counsel, something has become all too familiar to me as an Intake Consultant. We (our industry) are not adequately monetizing the referral aspect of our business. What do I mean? In its most simplistic form, we are not trying to refer cases to co-counsel nearly as much as we could (and should), which means we are limiting (or altogether avoiding) another source of revenue. Moreover, we are leaving our would-be clients without any recourse!
There’s a certain saying that I believe law firms should abide by:
Just because my firm isn’t interested in the case doesn’t mean that another firm isn’t.
And if you haven’t implemented a procedure by which your firm is trying to refer out cases that may have merit then you are missing the boat (and, again, losing money). Remember, these leads came in as a result of YOUR marketing dollars. It is in your best interest to squeeze the towel as much as you possibly can before you accept that it’s dry. And that means trying to refer potential clients to outside counsel.
Let’s take this one step further. It’s not good enough to just refer the case to another law firm. We need to make sure that the law firm we are referring the case to is handling it appropriately. For instance,
- Are they timely acknowledging our referral?
- Are they answering the claimant’s questions?
- Are they providing us with frequent updates?
- Are they using best practices for retention?
In this day and age where the competition for clients (and referrals) is ruthless, ensuring that those individuals who contact your law firm are handled appropriately is of utmost importance. For every missed referral is a missed source of revenue… and a perfect opportunity for another law firm to swoop right in.
Looking for an objective perspective?
Thinking about finally maximizing your marketing dollars?
Contact me anytime at 844-Max-Intake or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Gary advises law firms, attorneys and legal organizations on the importance of creating, utilizing, managing and maximizing the intake process. He has worked with countless law firms in improving their intake process and, importantly, increasing their conversion percentages by creating customized programs to improve leadership, time management, project management, delegation, prospective client relations and case conversion skills.