Practice management is different from case management; any good business plan should include a strategy for processing leadsPractice management is different from case management. Case management begins once the client is signed up and the case is opened. Law Practice Management begins with at the door, at the web portal, as the auro that surrounds you in your everyday interaction. It is part of everything you do.
Just as you would invest in a product like Time Matters to manage your cases so that you can better serve your clients, get the necessary Time Matters training, retain the requisite Time Matters consultant, so you would wish to invest in growing your practice.
How many of you have written a business plan for your law practice? How many of you have sat down and laid out a P&L for your practice, identifying those areas where you would get the most return on investment.
I know these actions seem to be a thankless task. When you are already plugging away for 60 hours a week and trying to make ends meet, to have so “guru” tell you to take another 10 hours to develop a business plan.
But that is what I am doing. For if you look at your law practice with a critical “business eye” you will see that some of your activities are more “profitable”. You may decide that other activities are more fun (and less profitable), so that you should budget time for those activities.
Any good business plan should include a strategy for processing leads … a formal marketing plan that identifies where those leads are likely to come, and how to best turn those leads into paying (and profitable clients). One area, often overlooked in these plans, which call for fancy web sites, expensive “glossy pamplets” and strategic print adds, is the phone and email. Because the phone and email are perceived as “cheap” they are undervalued as a source of leads by many attorneys.
The phone call
Use Time Matters to log “every phone call”. This will give you a wealth of information and a baseline to determine which phone calls get converted into paying clients. Every call that comes in should be logged, and every called profiled as a contact. If you haven’t check, phone calls are now practically free with unlimited calling time phone plans. And if you get the person on the phone, they will listen for a minute or two.
This mechanism has been most over-rated. The V&*#iag#$ra ads and other tonic sellers have destroyed this as an effective mass marking approach. But if you build up e-Newsletters and have subscribers, you can create an awareness among clients and potential clients of your capabilities. Give them content and they will read. Time Matters lets you track the results of your newsletter campaigns. Take a field and convert it to a check box and label it Newsletter. You can then export a list to a mass emailer (or use a Time Matters groups for the mailing).