Understanding Your Prospective Client
What do prospective clients value in an attorney? Are they more interested in your online reviews or your fee schedule? Does your heavy caseload cause potential clients to hire someone else? In the age of online information, do referrals still matter?
As more potential clients become comfortable researching and connecting with attorneys online, law firms are reassessing and recalibrating how they manage prospects’ expectations and client needs. During the past year, Martindale-Avvo has undertaken a number of research projects to help attorneys understand what matters most to their potential clients. As part of its research, the team mapped the consumers’ hiring journey from the moment the legal need arises to the time when their issue has been resolved. They dug into what criteria consumers use to narrow their search for, and then ultimately select, an attorney to hire. Most recently, Martindale-Avvo investigated how long it took for consumers to select a lawyer, what they expected to spend on their legal matter and how they handled referrals.
Martindale-Avvo heard from more than 6,900 consumers and generated more than 200 pages of transcripts from qualitative interviews to generate these three reports.
Here are just a few of the highlights from the report:
● The immediate nature of communication in the digital world makes responding to clients quickly a big focus.
● There are significant opportunities for attorneys to grow their business beyond referrals.
● Consumers are price sensitive, even when legal issues are involved.
● Soft skills are critical.
Find out more by downloading these exclusive reports.
The initial report, The Legal Consumer’s Journey: A guide to how people choose and hire an attorney, charts what consumers are doing, thinking and feeling from the time they discover they have a legal issue through to their actions post-resolution. The report takes attorneys into the minds of their prospective buyers during the selection process.
How Consumers Choose Attorneys: A mixed methodology study of the decision-making criteria legal consumers find most important educates attorneys on what criteria consumers use to filter, or create their short list of potential attorneys to hire, and then describes the most important criteria consumers use when making their final choice.
Martindale-Avvo’s most recent report, Hiring an Attorney 2019: Legal Consumer Choices; Client Expectations, takes the decision criteria report one step further by investigating consumers’ expectations during the entire process and the choices they make when their expectations are not met.
The way consumers find, research and select law firms will continue to evolve. By delving into these three reports, attorneys will come to a deeper understanding of their prospective clients and how to win and keep their business. The Martindale-Avvo research assists attorneys in understanding today’s legal consumer and leaves them with a steadfast truth: the quality of the consumer’s experience is paramount in winning and retaining future clients.
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