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Your Intake Team is Costing You Money: Part 1: Phone Calls

2 mins

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Over the years, I’ve spoken and worked with hundreds of law firms across the country. For those that utilize an intake team, mainly plaintiff’s firms, one thing rings true across the gross majority: their intake team is f$$king it up and costing them money.

I’m not talking small sums either. Many firms we work with, particularly those that target more niche areas of personal injury, have average case values of six- if not seven-figures. As a result, one poorly handled (or more often missed altogether) call from a potential new client, could be the difference between a six-figure payout for the firm or nothing at all.

That bears repeating: poorly handled intake calls and follow-up procedures cost your firm millions. Maybe not each call, but in aggregate, it’s a fact.

But my say-so likely won’t convince you. So let me share a few real-life examples.

Answering the phone

Answering the phone each and every time it rings should be the bare minimum, the low watermark. Sounds simple enough, right? Unfortunately, it is not.

More often than not, the phone goes unanswered and potential clients are sent to voicemail where they will likely just hang up and call the next firm. With approximately 74% of people hiring the first firm they speak with, you don’t want to be the firm that could have been that first call. If your firm doesn’t answer, your competition will, and you can be certain that’s the next call they will make.

A story that comes to mind:

While running paid advertising campaigns, we like to ensure that all processes are buttoned up and on point. After all, each call comes with a real cost (not just the potential loss if mishandled). For that reason, we always inquire about our clients’ intake processes to ensure they are in proper order. This client assured us their process was second to none, and in fact, their head of intake “gave great phone.”

It turns out, she did not. As a matter of fact, she would pick up the phone and ask,  “what do you want?” And that is how she answered the phone knowing it was being recorded. Needless to say, we were shocked and took swift action to affect change.

The more unfortunate part of this story? It’s not a one-off.

Is your firm struggling with intake? If it were, would you know? We can help.

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Ross Yellin