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The Rainmaker Blog

Law firm marketing and business development strategies

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We Are All Connected on Memorial Day

Posted in Law Firm Marketing

Brass-Memorial-PlaqueSometimes it is hard to remember that there are many things that connect us in America:  country, love of family, love of freedom and honoring all of those who sacrifice to serve our nation.

I am pretty sure that every one of us knows someone who has served – a family member, a friend, or a friend’s family member.  Maybe it’s someone you know from work or from your place of worship.

Each one of us has benefitted from that service, even if we have only a distant connection to the person who sacrificed some – or all – so we can live in freedom.

There are few things more profound than service to others.  Whatever you are doing this Memorial Day, I hope you will join me in thinking about those who have served and who are still serving today.

I would like to think that we all share this indebtedness — and that those to whom we owe that debt truly feel a free nation’s gratitude.

21 Travel Hacks to Save You Time and Money

Posted in Business Development for Law Firms

I travel a lot, both for business and pleasure.  Like many others of you who have traveled a lot over the years, I can get pretty depressed about the state of the travel industry these days.

Back in the day, traveling was an event that you dressed appropriately for and looked forward to.  Today,  you’re lucky if the people on your plane are actually fully dressed and you just look forward to it being over!

Because I still want to like to travel, I am interested in learning as many tips as possible to make my trips go more smoothly.  Obviously, there’s a lot that is not within our control, but if we take control over the things we can, it actually does make for a better trip.

The infographic below provides 21 travel hacks that aim to give us road warriors some control, and I thought these were worth sharing here today with you:

21 Travel Hacks to Save You Time and Money

How to Create a Law Firm Social Media Marketing Plan

Posted in Social Media Marketing for Law Firms

How to Create a Law Firm Social Media Marketing PlanIf one of your goals is to become more proficient at social media marketing, then you need to follow the advice of Yogi Berra, who said, “If you don’t know where you are going, you’ll end up someplace else.”

Translation: you need a plan.

Here are the six steps you need to take to create a social media marketing plan for your law firm:

Step 1: Choose your social media networks. Frankly, you don’t want or need to participate on every social media network out there.   Where you need to be is where your clients and prospects are. For B2B attorneys, that is LinkedIn. For B2C attorneys, it’s Facebook and Twitter. Check out these demographic profiles for the major social media networks from the Pew Research Internet Project to help you figure out where your prospects are likely hanging out online.

Step 2: Complete your profiles. Once you have selected your social media networks, you need to complete your profile on each network. Include both visuals and text and make your profiles consistent across all the platforms. Be sure to include your address for local SEO and to let people find you easily. Include your main keywords. Keep the content fresh by updating.

Step 3: Find your voice. Spend some time on each social network you have chosen to participate on to discover the right tone and voice for your posts. Since social media networking is much like offline networking, be yourself. Learn what is appropriate — and not — to share.

Step 4: Schedule your posts. Participating on social networks means just that — participating! Research shows that you should be posting on Facebook 5-10x/week, Twitter at least 5x/day, and LinkedIn once every weekday. For the best times to post, check out this recent timing research from HubSpot. Try to include an image with all posts — research also shows posts with photos get shared up to 35% more.

Step 5: Analyze, test and repeat. Check your stats on your social media networks to see what posts are getting the most traction online — you can use a reporting tool like Buffer Analytics to create a dashboard for all your networks so you can review stats at a glance.   Then repeat your successes.

Step 6: Automate and engage. There are several online tools you can use to automate the scheduling of your posts that will save you a lot of time and enable you to keep things running smoothly when you’re too busy or away. However, there does need to be a person responsible for monitoring your social media networks so comments or questions are answered promptly.

want more signIf you’d like a little more help with your social media marketing, call us at 888-588-5891 or click here to sign up for a free one-on-one Strategy Session with a Rainmaker Advisor who will listen to your specific marketing challenges. 

The Rainmaker Advisors are hand-picked and trained to identify marketing strategies that you can implement to grow your practice.

4 Steps to Generate Leads and Referrals from Public Speaking

Posted in Business Development for Law Firms, Using Speaking for Legal Marketing

4 Steps to Generate Leads and Referrals from Public SpeakingI am in San Francisco today speaking at the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys (NACBA) annual national convention. I’m well into the double-digits for the number of speeches I’ve given this year and even with all the hassles of travel these days, there is one very good reason I give so many talks: it brings me business!

Public speaking is a very powerful law firm marketing strategy to generate more clients and referral sources.  Here are four tips that will ensure the time you commit to this endeavor pays off for you:

Step #1: Always Speak to Decision Makers
Make sure you get in front of the right group (people who either can refer you clients or who are highly likely to need, want and be able to afford your services). If you are invited to speak at an event, ask the organizer these questions before agreeing to appear:

  • What is the average attendance?
  • Who is your average attendee? Their job title? Description? Age?
  • What kinds of topics have had the best response?
  • Who has recently spoken to your group and what did they speak about?

Step #2: Educate Your Audience
Make your talk educational. Don’t stand up there and spout legal jargon and legal theory or sections and codes because that’s not what people want. They want practical, useful information.

You may say, “Well, I don’t want to give away the store. I don’t want to give them so much information that they can do it themselves.” Please understand that if you could give them enough information where they could do it themselves, the people who actually would do it themselves are not your clients.

You want to target the people who have the money to hire an attorney and don’t want to do it themselves. You don’t want to hire tire kickers or “do it yourselfers” because all they’re going to do is try to get your lowest price.

You must recognize that not everyone in the audience is in your target market and you need to qualify them as much as they qualify you. You need to ensure that they need you, they want you and they can afford you.

Step #3: Get Attendees’ Contact Information
Have a plan for obtaining the attendees’ contact information both before and after your presentation. You want to get it before so that you can get ready to follow-up with them, but also after your presentation just in case somebody shows up at the door. If you can’t get the contact information from the event organizer, do a giveaway for a prize and have them pass their business cards to the front or have them email you their contact information to get a free copy of the handout or PowerPoint slides.

Step #4: The Fortune is in the Follow-up
The number one reason why lawyers don’t get results is because they don’t have a written follow-up system. You must develop a follow-up strategy before the talk.

Let me give you an example. Let’s say your follow-up strategy is a series of emails. Email #1 would be sent within 24 hours after the event. It would be a thank you email with an offer for a free consultation, special report or an offer to include them on your newsletter list.

Email #2 is sent 3 to 5 days after the event. Remind them about the seminar they attended and invite them to sign-up for a consultation or your newsletter. Email #3 might offer a brief tip about the topic you spoke about: top 10 tips or recommended resources, etc. Every attendee should receive at least 5-7 emails from your law firm over time.

If you implement these tips, you will attract both new clients and referrals from an audience that has been impressed by your knowledge, how you articulate it and the thoroughness of your follow-through.

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Free Report! How to Generate Business Through Public SpeakingFree Report! How to Generate Business Through Public Speaking

One of the biggest builders of credibility and an important key in becoming a recognized expert is speaking on your area of law practice at local or regional events.

So why doesn’t every attorney do it?

What we hear from many attorneys that we work with is that they’d rather jump out of an airplane without a parachute than speak in public.

But if you do it right, you can generate business as well as enhance your reputation as a solid and recognized expert.

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • How to make sure you’re speaking in front of the right people
  • Different approaches to conquer your fear of public speaking
  • How much information to share with your audience
  • How to follow-up in order to generate business
  • …And much, much more!

Click here now to receive your free report on The 4 Keys to Becoming a Recognized Expert in 180 Days: The 2nd Key – Public Speaking

How to Stop Stressing Over Social Media

Posted in Social Media Marketing for Law Firms

How to Stop Stressing Over Social MediaFear of the unknown is a basic human instinct, and we see it every day when it comes to attorneys and social media.  But with 82% of online adults using social media, it’s time to face your fears!

One way to face your fear is to learn all about proven social media marketing strategies attorneys have used to build their practices at a Rainmaker Retreat, our two-day law firm marketing seminar.

Here are four of the most common fears I hear from attorneys at our Rainmaker Retreats:

“I don’t have enough time.”

You don’t have to spend a lot of time on social media for it to benefit your firm. Choose one or two social media networks where your target market is most likely to be found — for B2C attorneys, the #1 network is Facebook; for B2B attorneys, it’s LinkedIn. Then spend about 30 minutes a day — first thing is best — on creating a post about something of interest to your target market. If that still doesn’t work for you, you can engage a law firm marketing company like ours to help you.

“I don’t know what my ‘voice’ should be.”

The voice in your posts should be yours. It should sound human, not corporate. Have your personality and opinions reflect your firm’s marketing strategy and values.

“I don’t know what to post.”

Think about the top 10 problems clients have that you solve, and create posts with solutions to those problems. You can then turn those posts into a free report. How-to articles and FAQs are great ways to showcase your expertise as well. Share interesting and informative articles you’ve found that your audience can relate to, and ask questions to start conversations.

“I’m worried about negative comments.”

Yes, there are some trolls out there who will leave a negative remark every now and then. If it has merit, then you’ve just learned something about how you can improve your service. If it doesn’t have merit, don’t worry — it’s an opportunity to respond professionally to show you care enough to engage. And if it’s just off the wall, no one will pay attention to it.

At every Rainmaker Retreat, we focus on the unique problems facing solos and small law firms, providing advanced hands-on training for lead generation, lead conversion, legal marketing automation, and Internet and social media marketing strategies specifically designed to help attorneys generate more and better referrals for their law firm, and convert more prospects into paying clients.

Upcoming Rainmaker Retreat dates include:

You can register online for a Rainmaker Retreat or call 888-588-5891 for more information.  National Trial Lawyers members receive a discount. Please contact National Trial Lawyers at 866-665-2852 to receive the discount code.

A Cheap, Easy Way to Gain a True Competitive Advantage for Your Law Firm

Posted in Business Development for Law Firms

A Cheap, Easy Way to Gain a True Competitive Advantage for Your Law FirmLawyers are always looking for ways to gain a competitive advantage over other attorneys in their area who practice the same kind of law. Yet there is one easy, inexpensive way to accomplish this that is often overlooked: client service.

Providing good client service is not enough these days and this is why: Great client service and poor client service are the two extremes that get talked about. Good client service does not.

Face it, service is what you sell. It is your most profoundly important product. Yet so many lawyers are still stuck in the trap of thinking they sell legal knowledge. Do you want to be just one of thousands selling the same product? That is a sure recipe for failure.

It is human nature to have set expectations. When we visit an expensive restaurant, we expect the service and food to be exceptional. When we visit a fast food joint, we just expect our order to be fast, low priced and correct.

Think about what the average person’s expectation is of a law firm: expensive and slow to respond to any communication except when it comes to sending out the bills. It’s a pretty low standard. So what are you doing to rise above and distinguish yourself?

At our two-day law firm marketing boot camp, the Rainmaker Retreat, I spend a good chunk of time talking about how to provide exceptional client service. I use one law firm – Bisnar Chase in Orange County, CA – as a prime example of this.

When a potential client visits the firm, they are greeted by name and taken to a private conference room that also has their name on the door. They are offered a beverage from a menu of drinks. The attorney they are meeting with greets them promptly and listens intently to their needs; there are no forms to fill out at the initial consultation. Their parking is validated and they are given a bottle of water for the road.

Immediately after the initial consultation, the communication process begins. Regular emails are sent to follow up after they become a client, including educational emails about what they can expect from the legal process. Paralegals have regularly scheduled calls with each client about their case. Clients receive birthday cards with a small gift certificate as well as a New Year’s gift. They are sent monthly educational and informational e-newsletters, and after the case is over, exit interviews are conducted to determine how the firm performed to expectation.

The firm also conducts extensive training with its staff on how to close the deal and ask for the business. Performance bonuses are given to employees who sign up clients. No prospect ever leaves that office with any doubt that this firm wants their business!

The next time a prospect walks through your door, take a good look at your firm through their eyes. Then begin setting standards for exceptional client service that will place you far and above your competitors.

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Free Webinar: How to Develop Zealot Clients from HelloFree Webinar: How to Develop Zealot Clients from Hello

Developing “zealot” clients – those who won’t be pried from your firm for love and money and who are the first to refer your services to others – begins at “hello.”

Now you can learn techniques and strategies to quickly build those important, lasting relationships with clients by watching this free webinar – How to Develop Zealot Clients From Hello.

During this free one-hour webinar, you will learn:

  • How to quickly cement your relationship with new prospects
  • How to control calls and advance the intake without being overbearing or pushy
  • How to gain commitment from callers and secure the intake
  • A simple naval tactic from the 1800′s and why it is vital to the success of your intake
  • The truth about compassion fatigue and how it will impact your conversion
  • Simple techniques to improve your tone, voice, inflection and delivery while you’re on the phone with prospective clients
  • A linked sequential process to maximize every inquiry opportunity
  • And much more!

Who should watch?  Intake specialists, receptionists, client liaisons, investigators, attorneys and managing partners who want to learn how to drastically improve conversion through intake.

Register online now for immediate access to this free one-hour webinar at any time.

 

5 Steps to Take Prospects from Lead to Client

Posted in Lead Conversion

5 Steps to Take Prospects from Lead to ClientLaw firm marketing is a full-circle proposition, and should include strategies for not just generating leads, but also managing those leads so they eventually turn into paying clients.

Here are some tips on how to manage the leads coming into your law firm so you can convert them into clients:

Have a lead management platform. A comprehensive law firm marketing program that embraces multiple marketing techniques – SEO, email marketing, social media, blogs, etc. – means leads come in from many different sources. If you don’t have an automated way to deal with them, they slip through the cracks and all that hard work and financial investment was for nothing.

Among many things, a marketing automation system allows you to:

  • Identify, track and engage prospects online
  • Segment your prospects for targeted messaging
  • Nurture leads through drip email campaigns with no human intervention necessary
  • Create and manage lead-generating landing pages
  • Measure the revenue contribution of every email, e-newsletter or other marketing effort

Have a lead management strategy. Once a lead comes in, what happens to it? You need a system in place that nurtures the lead through the sales process and people who are accountable for that system. Our experience has shown us that many law firms have the wrong people answering prospect calls. You don’t want people handling your intake process who have a customer service background; you want people who have sold stuff over the telephone.

This is best done by people who are particularly skilled at responding to leads. According to research by InsideSales.com, your intake team must be able to respond to leads within five minutes of the initial call and follow up with those who don’t schedule an appointment or retain you after the first meeting at least six times.

Analyze your lead sources. You need to track what programs are bringing in the most leads so you can duplicate what works and get rid of what is not working. When someone calls your office, one of the first questions your staff should be asking is how they found you.  If the answer is they discovered you on the Internet, ask them what search terms they used.  If they saw an ad, ask them where.  If they say that someone referred them, ask them who.

Segment and score your leads. Not every lead has the same value. Someone who is a past client is a better lead than someone shopping around. Someone who downloaded your free report is a better lead than a website visitor.

Circle back. There are always some leads that fall by the wayside in the sales process, but don’t automatically count them out. Circle back in a timely fashion and find out what prevented a sale from happening so you can overcome that.

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FREE REPORT: Why Your Law Firm is Failing at Lead ConversionFREE REPORT: Why Your Law Firm is Failing at Lead Conversion

A topic that should be at the top of every law firm’s radar is how to improve your intake and lead conversion. This skill is woefully overlooked by most attorneys, who continue to focus 99% of their efforts and money on lead generation, fallaciously thinking this will solve their declining revenue problems.

Logically speaking, why would someone continue to spend an increasing amount of money on lead generation if they aren’t doing everything they can to actually convert those leads into paying or retained clients?

Lead generation too often comes down to a firm’s financial ability to “throw money at the problem,” but a lead conversion system can level the playing field and give small firms a true unique competitive advantage.

In the new free report, Why Your Law Firm is Failing at Lead Conversion, you will discover:

  • The 12 critical steps to set your law firm apart and convert more leads into clients
  • The shocking results of our secret shopper calls to 126 law firms
  • How to create a true, unique competitive advantage
  • How to dramatically improve your intake process to convert more clients

Get your FREE report now on Why Your Law Firm is Failing at Lead Conversion and start succeeding at turning prospects into clients!

 

100 Brilliant Business Quotes to Inspire You to Build Your Lifestyle Law Firm

Posted in Law Firm Development

The ability to build a “lifestyle law firm” – one that enables you to do what you want, when you want to do it – is the key to financial independence for attorneys.

If you know me or follow any of our legal marketing websites, our blogs, or social media posts, then you know that The Rainmaker Institute focuses on helping small law firms and solo practitioners create financially successful and personally satisfying law firms by focusing on lead generation, lead conversion, and client retention.

The whole premise is that when you develop a law firm that takes care of all your financial needs, it gives you freedom to enjoy your life and invest in the people and activities that are meaningful to you. This is something so few people have an opportunity to do!

The infographic below provides some great inspiration for law firm leaders to persist in pursuing that dream of a lifestyle law firm.  My favorite is from Charles Darwin:

“It is not the strongest species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the most responsive to change.”

Law firms that respond to change quickly and effectively are those that not only survive, but thrive.  If your firm has failed to adapt to changes in the marketplace, then talk to us.  We can help.

100 Brilliant Business Quotes to Help You Build Your Lifestyle Law Firm

 

How to Tell If You’re Ready for a Rainmaker Retreat

Posted in Rainmaker Retreat Boot Camp

How to Tell If You’re Ready for a Rainmaker RetreatIf you are like many attorneys I know, you have been practicing awhile, and your law firm is doing all right, but you go to sleep at night with this uneasy feeling that you should be making a lot more money by now and achieving a level of success that still seems to elude you.

Maybe your revenues and profits are falling faster than you want to admit, and you are finding it harder to land qualified clients.

Your overhead is the same, but with revenues being down, you are taking home less now than ever before.

If this sounds like you, then you are ready for a Rainmaker Retreat.

The Rainmaker Retreat focuses on the unique problems facing small law firms and solo practices. Here is just a small sample of the actionable methods you will learn:

Specific strategies highly successful attorneys are using right now on the Internet and with social media to attract hundreds of people to their websites and blogs every month, convert them to paying clients, and keep them coming back and sending a steady stream of referrals!

Dozens of ways to drastically reduce the cost of your marketing campaigns and still get more clients than you might believe possible.

How to implement low cost marketing tools and systems that let you control your practice – instead of your practice controlling you!

We are so confident you will benefit from the Rainmaker Retreat that we offer a 100% money back guarantee. If you are not completely satisfied at the end of the first day, just let us know, turn your materials in and we will refund your money.

You have nothing to lose and so much to gain by attending.

Here are our upcoming Rainmaker Retreat dates:

Go to www.rainmakerretreat.com or call 888-588-5891 to register now and take advantage of our Early Bird registration, which can save you more than 30%.