How to get your clients to help you increase your law firm’s profits

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client interviews, surveys and law firm auditsIn his report, “What’s Hot and What’s Not in the Legal Profession,” posted last week, Bob Denney said that one of the trends that was heating up in the marketing and business development area is “client interviews and audits”. He said, “More firms are recognizing, however slowly, that the feedback and information obtained from them–particularly when they are conducted by knowledgeable outside consultants–are critical in strategic planning and development of growth strategies.”

Asking your clients how you’re doing and what you can do better is the best market research you can get, and it’s free. Not counting the cost of the outside consultant.

There’s no better “intel” than that from someone who actually paid money to hire you.

Using outside professionals to do the surveys is also good advice. A firm that specializes in this kind of research will ask the right questions and they will know how to critically evaluate the answers. And using an outside service instead of doing it yourself will undoubtedly provide more honest feedback.

If you don’t want to hire an outside firm, interview your clients anyway. The feedback may not be as accurate but it’s better feedback than you’re getting right now.

Client interviews can help you learn what you are doing well and what you can do better. They can help you improve client relations and communications. And they can help you discover new marketing opportunities. All you have to do is ask.

Surveys are an easy alternative to interviews. You can post them on your web site, using free sites like www.surveymonkey.com and www.polldaddy.com. By providing anonymity, clients will be more likely to respond honestly. Open-ended questions can lead to some surprising discoveries. Multiple choice questions can help you identify patterns that deserve your attention. If 70% of your clients say you need to communicate with them more often, that’s something you cannot ignore.

At the very least, call a client today and ask them how you’re doing. You never know what you might learn and what you learn could earn you a fortune.

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