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Intake can be tricky, but it is critical to your law firm. As with any business, the first impression is everything. When it comes to law firms, the first contact with potential clients is usually through an intake specialist. While many attorneys may see intake as nothing more than a phone answering or receptionist job, the truth is that it is a crucial part of the sales process. In fact, the intake specialists are the directors of first impressions in law firms. This article will discuss three main reasons intake is vital to your law firm’s success.

Intake is the First Substantial Contact with Your Firm

Firstly, over 90% of consumers contact a law firm by phone. That is why we call intake personnel the directors of first impressions. What you can hear on the phone or how you talk to all prospects who contact your law firm can determine whether you can set up an appointment for a consultation or receive the call again. The intake job is much more than just answering the phone and taking a message. It’s to be the first touchpoint with potential clients, to make them feel heard, and to help them feel comfortable booking a consultation with your law firm.

Importance of a Great Intake Specialist

Secondly, your intake specialists should discuss what makes your law firm unique and personable. Intake should not sound scripted but be comfortable with answering prospect’s questions with a personalized but factual response. Unique questions that set you apart from other firms, such as, “What makes your firm different?”. A good answer to this question would be to state that you specialize only in compensation lawsuits, which sets you apart from all other personal injury law firms, or that you have a former prosecutor on staff, giving your clients an incredible advantage. This makes the client feel special, as though the law firm’s sole purpose is to help them win their case.

Intake Impacts Your Firm’s Revenue Growth

Thirdly, intake is vital to cash flow, and your law firm’s revenue growth, and not every person who contacts your firm will be ready to set an appointment immediately. People who contact your law firm may still not be quite sure if they have a legal case or are unsure how to proceed. Consequently, intake specialists should take these phone calls seriously because without skillful handling, you may never know if these prospects will reach out to your firm again. Intake should keep track of follow-ups and schedule appointments for later when the client is ready to discuss their case. This process can only help grow your firm’s future client base, increasing its revenue.

Create a Follow-Up Plan

To effectively engage with potential clients who are not yet ready to make a decision, it’s important for your intake person to have a strategic follow-up plan. This includes sending out a series of five to 10 emails over a two to three week period that highlight your unique offerings and sharing case studies to build trust. Additionally, sending two to three follow-up text messages further conveys your ability to help. However, personal outreach is key to nurturing leads. It’s imperative to make outbound phone calls to potential clients who didn’t set an appointment with you as they may have a whole list of attorneys in your area they are considering. Neglecting to stay top of mind could mean losing out to the competition. By creating a thorough follow-up plan, you can capture those potential clients and ultimately increase your chances of securing their business.

In conclusion, it’s crucial to remember that your intake personnel are not just there to answer the phone and take messages. They are essential to your law firm’s sales process and should be handled as a sales position. Finding the right people for the job with sales and customer service skills is essential. These individuals will need to be personable and passionate about helping people. Ultimately, how your intake specialists handle prospective client calls will either help your clients pick your law firm or turn them away to the next firm on their Google search. Focus on training your intake specialists to be helpful and engaging, making clients feel heard and reassured, and setting your law firm apart from the competition.

Contact The Rainmaker Institute for Intake Help

We are passionate about helping you achieve what we call a 7-figure Lifestyle Law Firm®.  We pride ourselves on staying on the cutting edge of law firm marketing, so you don’t have to.

Our proven marketing strategies, trusted partnerships, and educational opportunities will ensure that you get the most out of your law firm, while also enjoying a financially successful and personally satisfying career. Schedule a complimentary strategy session with us today!