In law firm business development, it all begins and ends with the relationship. CRM, which stands for client relationship management, helps build and maintain those relationships.
CRM is a technology system that provides a central place for the entire firm to manage contacts. But CRMs go beyond an address book. There is a wealth of information that can be connected to each contact in a CRM, from which client alerts were opened to the last attorney in the firm to call that contact, and why. A CRM allows for a firm to present a cohesive, organized approach to business development. It also allows business development to integrate with the firm’s legal marketing strategy.
Let’s say you meet Rachel at a networking dinner, and she mentions that she knows your law firm colleague, Bob. Rachel also tells you her mother was recently injured in a car accident and she’s having trouble with the insurance company. The next day, you look up Rachel in your law firm’s CRM. There, you see that Bob handled Rachel’s estate planning five years ago. It also shows she opens client alerts on family law-related issues. Her CRM entry shows she is divorced and has two young children. Also, she prefers emails over telephone calls.
What can you do with this information to turn a former client into a returning client?
- Contact Bob, let him know you met Rachel, and ask if he could review her file to see if there are any circumstances that might warrant an estate plan update.
- Review the client alerts she read. Is there a trend in what interests her? Maybe she is reading information about custody or support disputes, signaling possible issues in her divorce.
- Email Rachel, tell her it was nice to meet her, and ask about her family.
- In the email, provide her with the name of a trusted attorney who handles auto accident disputes. Whether or not this attorney is you, a law firm colleague, or a referral to an attorney at another firm doesn’t matter – any of these options are positioning you as a valuable resource and building your relationship.
- Tell her you told Bob about meeting her and Bob realized there is a new tax law that impacts her estate plan and he will be in contact.
- Share with her a recent article or webinar from your firm’s family law practice group. Invite her to contact you or Bob anytime, even if she thinks it’s an issue you don’t handle because you are happy to connect her to the help she needs.
The client information stored in a CRM is valuable to law firms and business relationships. This explains why the global CRM market is expected to reach $114.4 billion by 2027, according to Million Insights. The market research database attributes CRM’s growing popularity to greater emphasis being placed on client service and the technological advances being made in artificial intelligence.
Three Reasons Why Law Firms Should Use a CRM
- The best way to develop business is through existing clients. A CRM helps build strong relationships with former and current clients by understanding what they are interested in so you can give them the information they want. This keeps your law firm top-of-mind for return business, as well as referrals from a happy client who appreciated the thoughtful, helpful connection you created.
- You know you should contact clients regularly to check in as a standard business development tactic. CRMs integrate reminders and scheduling to make sure that important outreach doesn’t fall through the cracks.
- Keeping track of multiple clients and their needs can be difficult. A CRM organizes clients in one place so you can see a full picture of where they are in their hiring journey and what they may need next.
In marketing speak, these activities are called “lead generation” or “lead management,” with the “leads” being the potential new business. A CRM is only as good as its leads, so it’s important to begin with a clean, updated, and relevant contact list so that you can focus on those leads that are viable and turn them into business.
Scorpion’s lead management technology helps law firms turn leads into clients by helping you build and maintain strong client relationships. Contact us to learn more.