Elder Law & Estate Planning Client Follow Up Strategies
What are the best ways to follow up with potential client leads at your elder law or estate planning practice?
During this month’s marketing coaching session, we go over the best follow up strategies to retain more of your potential client leads. These could be contacts from referral partners, workshop attendees, website visitors, etc.
To read the transcript, please scroll down below the video.
Elder Law & Estate Planning Potential Client Follow Up Strategies Explained
Video transcript as follows:
All right, good afternoon. Welcome to another one of our marketing coaching sessions. I see we have a couple of people that have jumped on here, and we have some questions that have already been submitted.
When we went to go and actually start brainstorming the outline for this marketing coaching session, we realized that we have a lot to talk about on one particular topic. So that’s the route we’re going to go with, and that’s going to be covering lead follow-up strategies when somebody comes into your world. So that’s what my goal here, unless anybody has any questions, and there is a chatbox on Zoom, and so if you do have any questions by default you’re automatically muted, but you can throw those questions into the chatbox, and I will be able to read those and address those as time permits. So this should take about 30 minutes is what we have this scheduled for today.
So again, thanks for joining us.
“I’ve Got Their Contact Information. Now What?”
All right, so lead follow-up strategies. When somebody gets into your world, and by that I mean they have registered for an event that you’re hosting, like an educational seminar or a workshop, or they’ve downloaded a resource, or they’ve submitted a contact on your website, anything where somebody has requested something and provided an opt-in, their contact information, their email address, their phone number, whatever that may be, when they provide that to your firm what do you do?
And I think one of the questions or the responses that we got was you don’t want to be a pest. So I’m going to go over a lot of things, and you might not agree with them, and that’s okay. I’m going to give you the best practices for what’s going to work best in the long run, and what’s going to get you guys the most retained clients, which is what you want.
The Initial Follow Up
So we’ll start with following up for a workshop. Somebody registers for a workshop. What does that look like?
If you’re using us, our system when someone does register for one of your workshops, they’ll get an initial email confirmation from our system just thanking them for their registration to their email address and letting them know that it was received. If you’re doing a direct mail campaign, a lot of those companies, obviously, they’ll be placing a phone call to the direct mail company and they’ll be talking to them on the phone, so it’s a little bit different there as far as that initial follow-up goes.
Now, what you’re going to want to do and where the follow-up really comes into key is going to be that initial phone call follow-up from the office. As soon as you see that somebody makes a registration for one of your events, and honestly, if you’re doing any type of client generation where someone’s downloading eBooks, maybe you have an eBook download on your website or you’re running an ad for that with us or somebody else, and somebody requests something, you want that notification to go to your office, and you want somebody to follow-up with that person as fast as they possibly can.
We’re talking like if that notification comes in and someone can get in touch with that person in five, 10, 15, 20 minutes, an hour, the chance of them becoming a client of yours is exponentially better.
And that’s because you have to keep in consideration when somebody’s online they’re doing a million different things. They might be at home watching TV, scrolling on their iPad, looking at pictures of their grandkids or family. They might be out and about just waiting while a family member’s doing something else. So what you’re doing by that initial follow-up phone call is you’re solidifying that they did something and that you know they did something, and you want to make sure that whatever they requested or they registered for, they take advantage of that, because they obviously needed it.
So doing that as fast as you can is key. If it’s on a weekend or something like that, obviously, you’re going to follow-up with those people on Monday. But just doing that initial phone call from the office is going to be the number one thing that’s going to get you your attendance rates up for your actual seminars or workshops. It’s going to be the number one thing that’s going to get more consultations scheduled out of somebody that just downloads a resource from your website. So if you just do one thing from this call and get off the call right now, and you just do those phone calls immediately as they come in, you’re going to see some amazing results. So after that phone call follow-up, the more touches that you have, if it’s a workshop, the higher percentage of those people are actually going to show up and probably become a client of yours.
The Second Follow Up
What we typically recommend after that first, “Hey, this is Blake Law Office. “We saw, Mrs. Smith, you registered for the event “on September the 29th. “You’re bringing a guest, so there’s two people. “Did you have any questions for Jim to cover at the event? “Okay, great, we’ll make sure Jim’s “going to cover those for you. “We’re excited, we’re reserving your spots. “If anything changes, give us a call.” Something like that. Just a nice casual letting them know that you received their information, and if you get their voicemail, leave it as that. Leave a voicemail.
But you want to do another one of those phone calls, and possibly two of those phone calls as friendly reminders between the time that they make a registration for your event and the actual event date. That’s just, again, maybe there’s something, “Did you know we’re providing a lunch,” or “Did you know we’re not providing a lunch, “but we’re having light refreshments?” Something, just make a reason for the phone call, and do that one to two more times.
The Day Of Follow Up
And then finally, the day of or the morning of the event or the night before the event a final phone call and/or an email follow-up. I know that sounds like a lot. Some people, they push back when we tell them to do this. But you’re not bothering these people. In fact, they’ll tell you if you’re bothering them, and if you are bothering them, then just say, “Okay, we won’t call you again.” Put do not call again. “Did you still want to attend the event,” or whatever? Typically, that person, if they’re crazy like that, they’re not going to become a client of yours anyway, and you’re not really missing anything by, I guess, angering that client.
The percentage of people that actually enjoy those and appreciate those follow-ups versus the people that don’t appreciate those phone calls is such a small number, but we tend to remember the negatives. So you’ll call 50 people for your workshop. One or two of those people might be mad that you’re calling them all the time. 48 of them are thankful. So go with the 48. They are the ones that RSVP’d for your event. They are the ones that requested more information. You’re doing them a disservice by not following-up with them properly. And I mean, you’re paying a lot of money for marketing. So if you’re not following-up and you’re not getting the percentage of people that are requesting the consultations or showing up for the workshop, then it’s a waste of marketing dollars, right. You’ll see it.
If you only do one phone call follow-up in the beginning and one the day before, that’s fine. You might get good results out of that and be happy with those results. But if you add another one, you’ll see those percentages of consultations and people show up go up. If you do another one, it doesn’t diminish. So the more you do, the better qualified the people are going to be, because they’re really looking forward to the event. And you’ll just get better results, period.
Outsourcing for Follow Up Phone Calls
Some people, maybe they’re smaller or solo law firm, and they just don’t have the resources to make those phone calls. We had initially started talking to a couple different companies to add that as a service,and we decided not to do that, because we just don’t want to get involved. But there’s companies out there like TeleDirect and Ruby Receptionist, and you can easily set up, and we would have no problem if you were working with us sending the rsvp notifications to a third-party company, and we can even provide them with scripts if it was us that you were working with, and then they can make the phone call follow-ups for you based off of just a schedule.
So you wouldn’t even have to technically do that at your office if that’s something you didn’t want to do, and you just wanted to outsource that. But most of our clients have no problem. They have an assistant. Some of them actually even do it themselves, because it’s important to them as they grow their practice to get those people to attend, and their attendance rates are awesome. We’re talking 80% attendance rates when they’re doing at least three or four phone call follow-ups in between there, which is great. So that’s definitely a great place to start.
The Middle is the Best
As far as post-event follow-up, now, that’s a little bit different. Everything that you’re doing at the workshop is obviously to get them into that next step, which is going to be the consultation.
So what you’re going to want to do is at the workshop try to get that to happen. What we’ve talked about in the past, and I’m not going to go into much detail about that on this coaching session, is structuring your meeting to include time in the middle of it, built-in time, to sweep the room for consult sign-ups.
Now, that’s been like, probably the best thing that any of our clients have been doing, is build that time in the middle. I believe there’s on our YouTube, maybe some of the previous, I think structuring a workshop I think we go into detail about how to do that. If you have any questions about that, you can reach out to me directly. I think there’s an article or two that we built out to talk about that, but that’s been the best by far.
Passing out workshop evaluation forms and getting people to sign up at the event for the consultation. That’s been really good as well. Just having a really good end of meeting flow where you have enough staff there that there’s not like a big line in the back of the room. So you have an actual flow or some kind of a setup where multiple people are taking consultation requests at the end, that’s okay.
But never ever only have one person or yourself doing that at the end of the event. So you have your workshop. At the end of your workshop you go “Thank you for attending. “Obviously we’d like to have you in for a consultation. “If you have any more questions, “Joe will be in the back taking those,” and then there’s a line of three people, and the other 15 people are like, I don’t want to wait in line. I’ve got other time, they must be busy. And they leave and you don’t have those consults. So you never want to do that.
You want to build in the time in the middle of the workshop or you want to have some type of an evaluation form with those dates on there they can circle a date, put their information in and hand that in to somebody. Or better yet, have somebody come around and collect those so they don’t even have to hand them in, or just a better flow with enough people to be able to take care of the consultations.
Because if you’re not getting the consultations, everything is pointless anyways. I guess if anybody has any questions about any of that, feel free, again, there’s a chatbox here. You can go ahead and throw those questions in there. I’ll be happy to address those as well.
It’s a Relationship.
But people want to feel like they’re having a relationship with your firm. So one of the other follow-ups, which we found is key, and I want to spend some time really diving into this, so you can understand the psychology behind building a relationship with a cold contact, when we first started doing this marketing for attorneys for estate planning and elder law attorneys, what we found is that we can get people to download eBooks, we can get people to download guides, we can get people to watch recorded presentations, and there are qualified people we can get people to come to their workshops and RSVP for those. But when they feel like they actually know the attorney, know why they’re doing what they’re doing, know the heart behind the firm, that it’s not just a guy or girl in a suit that’s a professional that’s just an attorney.
When it’s a real human being that doing this because of a reason, we found that a lot of estate planning and elder law attorneys have a story of why they’re doing what they’re doing, and when we share that story with these new contacts the consultations just come in naturally, because the person, even though they never met you, they feel like they know you. And they feel like they know your heart’s in the right place.
So what we do for our clients that choose to do this, the only optional service that we offer, is it’s a follow-up email sequence that we build out for our clients. So when somebody does provide their contact information to get something from you, they automatically receive what we call the relationship-building introduction sequence. And I’m going to share it with you.
The Relationship-Building Introduction Sequence
You can build this out yourself if you want to. But what that does is an hour after they sign up or whatever, if it’s a workshop, a live workshop, recorded workshop, a downloadable resource, whatever, they get an email – the first email from your firm, and it’s going to say who we are. And then the next day they’ll get another email. This goes on for five days. So the sequence is pretty much teaching them about who you are, what you do, why you do what you do, the things that you help people with that they probably had no idea that you could help them with, and then a call to action. “So now that you know more about me and my firm I would love to learn more about who you are and what your unique situation is. And we can’t wait to see you at our upcoming workshop, or we can’t wait to have you come in for that consultation,” or whatever that next step is at your practice. You would tell them. That’s you’re leading them in the direction that you want them to go.
So you’re teaching them about you, you’re telling them why they should have a relationship with you, why you’re doing what you’re doing, how you help people, and then you give them that invitation to the next step.
So after they get those five emails, and you’d be so surprised, I mean, the open rate on those introduction emails the average for our clients, it goes up and up and up every day. You’re looking somewhere between 75 to 90% open rates on emails, those five emails, which is, I mean, if you know anything about open rates on emails, it’s unbelievable. Then from that point moving forward, we do continue to follow up with them with a weekly email newsletter.
Does anybody have any questions about the five introduction emails, why that’s important, the relationship building that provides, the new context? You can throw those on in the chatbox, and I’ll be happy to address those. But otherwise, I’m going to go into the next part of that, which is going to be the weekly emails, and how those are structured. Awesome.
The Weekly Emails
Everybody that gets into your system goes into a weekly email newsletter after they get those five introduction emails that build the relationship. And on a side note, if you get those five emails, you’re coming in and you’re doing live workshops, they’re coming into the live workshop, and they already know who you are. They feel like they know you, they’ve never met you. You’ve never had a phone call with this person. They already know what motivates you to be an elder law attorney, and it just, I don’t know, it frames the workshop in a completely different way, because when they come in and they already have that relationship with you, even though it’s just been a virtual relationship, it puts a whole different mood into that workshop. So I think that if you just implement that as well, you’ll see a big difference probably on your conversions, on the consultations, and on the retaining clients, because people’s attitude and the barrier will be broken down if they’ve been reading those emails.
The weekly email newsletter, when we’re designing it what we do is we make it educational and fun. What our goal is is someone comes for a workshop or they download a resource, or whatever it is, they are obviously interested, or you wouldn’t have requested to goto an elder law or an estate planning workshop or download things to look for if you have a loved one going to a nursing home, download that stuff, or watch that stuff, or attend that if you don’t have a reason to. So there’s a reason.
If they don’t request the consultation or they don’t become a retained client of yours right away, you want to keep yourselves top of their mind. You don’t want another attorney or somebody else getting in there and taking that all that education that you’ve given them, taking them away when the next hot thing comes in front of them.
So every week – we send ours out of Thursday, they get a weekly email newsletter. Some of the ones that we’ve sent on behalf of our clients in the past to give you an idea of the content in those newsletters, seniors dealing with chronic pain, alternatives to living alone as a senior, smart doorbells and if grandma should have one, steps to easier long-distance caregiving, and senior smartphone pitfalls.
Like you can see, the main articles that we’re sharing inside of the weekly email newsletter, they’re not law-focused, because honestly, the general public, they don’t really care too much about that. And you don’t want to intermix,there’s a fine line between giving legal information inside of the email communication. So we just want to keep them engaged with you. We want them to open up those emails. We want them to feel like they’re learning something, they’re just consuming a fun piece of content. And then inside of those emails as well, if you have testimonials, or YouTube videos, or you have upcoming events, like live workshops or anything like that, you can always feature those inside of those emails as well.
But just every week send that out. I know a lot of you subscribe to different companies that provide marketing resources. Some of that stuff is good, some of that stuff isn’t good. Honestly, the stuff that we write out is obviously, I think is good, just because I’m biased to that. But you want it to be something that they haven’t seen before. If you’re not doing anything right now, you just do something you’ll find out that anything is better than nothing. Again, I’m the type of person that just says take the action.
Give Them Something to Look Forward To
So if you’re not doing any type of weekly email newsletter, do something. If it’s on your own, just repost an article, that’s fine. Use a company like us, that’s even better. But just do something. Stay engaged, do it regularly, make it so they’re expecting that email from you. Make it every week at the same exact time whatever day of the week that is, or whatever time that you decide that you want to send that out. Just something that they can look forward to. And then when they are ready, they’re going to call your office obviously. They’ve already had the relationship-building emails. They’ve already attended an event or consumed some sort of resource that you provided them online, and then they received that weekly communication from you.
They have the ability to unsubscribe. So again, not being a pest. They’ve requested the information. You’re providing them value, and if they aren’t interested anymore, there’s a big opt-in at the bottom where they can decide that they want to unsubscribe from future contact with you, and then they don’t get anything anymore, which is great.
Following up, yeah, if you’re not doing this, you’re just spending the marketing money, and you’re running a workshop, and the people that come to the workshop are the people that you get a percentage of those people to become consults. You get a percentage of those people to become retained clients, and you’re not following-up with anybody, you’re leaving tens and hundreds of thousands of dollars of revenue on the table.
So just by doing a couple of these things, getting an office to call these contacts ASAP. Send some sort of relationship-building email so that once they do opt-in your world they learn about you automatically, and they feel like they know you before they actually engage with you. And then at the end, you’re staying engaged. So sending out some type of communication with them on a weekly basis until they either decide to move forward and retain you, or unsubscribe, and that’s fine as well.
We have nine minutes left here it looks like. Went through a lot of information. I think this was pretty valuable stuff here, because, I mean, like I said, you can take two or three of these things right now. You can go implement them within the next seven days and see results within the next 30 probably, which would be unbelievable for your firm.
If anybody has any questions, I’d love to go over those, and I’ll spend the next eight to 10 minutes going over questions if anybody has any. Don’t be shy. There’s that chat box right there. You can type it in and I will be happy to answer those questions for you.
All right, well if nobody has any questions I do appreciate you for coming on and joining us live on this call. We’re planning on doing these every month. Then if you don’t have any questions during the actual live event when you’re making your RSVP for future events you can always add your question there on the RSVP for the event, and we’ll try to answer as many of those as we possibly can.
The follow-up stuff though, I just started, like I said, making these notes, and I was like, wow, there’s a lot of information out there that elder law and estate planning attorneys can really use quickly and see results quickly if they can implement this stuff. So definitely watch the replay of this. This’ll be up on YouTube. We’ll get this transcribed. You guys can read it and you guys can share it with the other staff members at your firm, and hopefully take this and go with it.
We do one of these every month on the last Thursday. Let me look at my calendar here. It looks like, today’s the 29th. Next month on the 26th I’m on vacation. On the 19th I’m at the National Elder Law Foundation Forum in Pittsburgh. So it might be the 12th of September, or we might do this, maybe like the 23rd or 24th of September. I’ll have to figure that out. But typically it’s the last Thursday of every month unless there’s something else that’s going on in our world.
Awesome, well I’ll let you guys enjoy the rest of your day. I’m going to start preparing for this hurricane that’s heading towards us here in Florida. Hopefully, it decides to go back out to sea or something. We’ll see what happens there.
And if you ever have any questions, you can always feel free to reach out to me [email protected]. I’d be happy to schedule a 15-minute phone conversation with any of you if you have some questions that you wanted to go over on the phone at no cost for that, obviously. Just to discuss that and see what we can do to help your practice grow. So have a great rest of your day, and we’ll talk soon. Thanks.
Utilizing these strategies can dramatically improve your seminar attendance and client retention going forward!
At Bambiz, we work with elder law and estate planning firms and have extensive experience in developing social media marketing strategies unique to your firm, location, and potential client base.
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Jim’s mission with Bambiz is to help Elder Law and Estate Planning attorneys get more clients and grow their business. He was awarded the Tampa Bay Business Journal Top Up and Comer Under 30 and is a Certified Digital Marketer. Jim is also passionate about running and fitness, having completed over 26 full marathons in three continents.