Last time I wrote about the time spent on Networking and Referral Marketing. I want to return to our Sole Proprietor Attorney and see how this applies to him or her.
The first and most obvious is that Lawyer's sell their time. So, if they are going to spend time on these efforts they need to budget their time accordingly. The right thing to do is to get an estimate of the number of hours to be spent with Clients and possibly in Court (depending on the type of law practiced). This should provide an hourly rate and a number of hours to be billed. Thus, we would have our revenue. The rest of the attorney's time can be spent on other matters, including marketing and sales.
One obvious marketing and sales function are the free consultations, whether it is 30 minutes or an hour. Again, this time should be budgeted so that not too many free hours are put into a week. On top of that, the number of consultations given versus the number of clients added needs to be tracked. This is a form of Sales Conversion and is an important metric. I have advised some attorneys to make a pre-qualification interview with a lower level employee as part of their process. It could be bypassed by a perfunctory payment, but the idea was to get a sense to the likelihood of conversion. Done correctly it could save everyone time and money.
At that point, there will be time left for whatever is required to build the personal trust to make these Referral Relationships work. How many hours per person to spend is something to think about? Another goes back to my last post: Who can give you multiple referrals? One category is customers and that will be talked about in a future post. Today I want to focus on the other category, those who sell to the same people that you do (or in this case who our attorney does). If I use myself as an example, the attorney that I could use a partnership with is an employment attorney that focuses on small business. Why? Because I work a lot on leadership, hiring, and onboarding. I help owners with personnel situations. I know the ropes, but the laws change regularly. For example, California enacted a law last year that required businesses to provide sick leave for part-time employees. Many businesses are unaware of this law even today. Many employees are uninformed as well. But a business owner could end up in hot water for not providing a plan. This includes our Sole Proprietor Attorney that might hire an Office Administrator for part of the week to schedule an appointment, perform billing and other tasks. So, it is good to have people that you know that are up for the current laws.
Depending on the type of law being practiced, that partner might be different. So, think about the kind of people that you are working near during any engagement. If you see that type of business often, then they might be a good partner.
Have a great day!
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