What to give new clients when they sign up

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I hired an attorney recently. After I signed the retainer agreement, he gave me a copy of the agreement and my check. Nothing else. Nor has he sent me anything in the mail or email in the several weeks since.

No letters, no phone calls, no information.

It’s true, nothing has happened yet that would require an update. Nevertheless, not sending me anything or communicating with me in any way is a big mistake.

Attorneys need to give new clients as much information as possible, and stay in touch with them as often as possible:

  • To thank them for choosing you instead of any other lawyer
  • To educate them on what you will be doing and how the client can help you do a better job for them
  • To inoculate the client from doing or saying anything that could harm them
  • To clarify and commemorate what you told the client and what the client told you
  • To give them something to show their spouse or partner that explains what you are doing and why it is necessary
  • To show clients you are organized and experienced and that they can trust you to stay on top of their matter
  • To ensure the client knows what will be happening, and when, so they don’t expect too much, too soon
  • To let the client know that even though they haven’t heard from you, you are working on their case
  • To reduce the client’s anxiety–about their case and about working with a lawyer
  • To add value to the transaction and exceed the client’s expectations; to give them a “wow” experience
  • To clarify billing and payment requirements so there are no misunderstandings or unpleasant surprises
  • To set the stage for cross-sales and referrals by educating the client about other services your firm offers

Every law firm should send new clients home with as much information as possible. Create a simple “new client kit” and supplement this with regularly scheduled letters and phone calls. Let them know what you are doing for them, even if what you are doing is waiting for something from them or from another party.

Many attorneys do this but too many don’t. How about you? What do you send your new clients and how has this helped your practice?

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