Old school lawyers won’t be around for long. Law firms are one of the least popular industries. Law firms rank along side airlines and credit card companies for net promoter scores. NPS is a measure of client satisfaction once the services or products have been delivered. Lawyers sometimes focus on unproductive tasks instead of doing client work.
Old School Lawyers
The most popular companies are steaming media companies, computer makers, and supermarkets.
The new model of ClearWay Law is going to require us to generate over 1000 leads per month. If we were operating only in a few cities, this would be very challenging. Therefore, we are rolling the plan out across Canada. Can we meet everyone in person? Absolutely not.
Legal Technology To The Rescue
Enter legal technology companies such as Zoom.
The biggest challenge for law firms going 100% online are some of the statistics that came out of the 2018 Legal Trends Report.
The report said that 59% of clients want to book meetings on the phone, this works well with the online model.
46% of clients want to discuss questions on the phone and getting updates on the progress on their matter (35%.)
Where clients don’t want to discuss via email, phone, or Zoom are discussing the details of their case (70% of people) and signing documents (64%.) Companies like Docusign have made signing documents easier. But asking clients to scan and send documents can be a challenge for a virtual law firm.
The key for our law firm with our Zoom model will be convincing clients to book consultations with our lawyers exclusively via Zoom or the phone.
Getting Feedback from Clients Is Key
Right now, 37% of law firms don’t collect any feedback from their clients. Of course, clients can still leave feedback on Google and Facebook. But from my research into Google Maps feedback, most of the feedback seems fake. From my own knowledge about what other law firms are doing, they are offering $5 off the legal fee if the client does a review for the law firm.
While that might help build the reputation of the law firm and the firm’s SEO, it doesn’t provide meaningful data for the firm. I think the real reason why lawyers don’t ask their clients for feedback is that they are not open to feedback. It seems that every time I offer constructive criticism to a lawyer, they get very upset. If I post a question on a lawyers Linkedin feed, the comment often get’s deleted.
Other Advantages of Being 100% Online
While providing better customer service and tracking client feedback is key, there is no doubt there is another major factor in client satisfaction.
Online law firms don’t have to pay rent. They should take those savings and pass them on to clients.
Also, if a client lives in a remote area 3 hours outside a major city, it will be very difficult for them to get legal representation. If they are lucky enough to have a family lawyer in their town, the quality and experience of the lawyer might be subpar. My experience is that small town lawyers are often not very skilled and lack customer service sense. This of course is not always the case.
Old School Lawyers Are Out- The Future of Law Firms
The key to running the law firm of the future lies in transparent costs (flat fees) and helping clients understand the process of getting from their legal issue to their solution (infographics.)
There are some encouraging statistics for online law firms. The report said that 68% of clients want to meet with their lawyer outside of office hours. An online law firms can easily operate during longer hours, as there could be lawyers on the East coast of Canada and on the west coast of Canada. This means that while keeping “9-5pm” office hours, the law firm can operate an additional 4.5 hours because that is the amount of time zones in Canada.
According to the legal trend report 59% of people that need a lawyer, they want their law firm to be available outside of the normal 9-5pm.
Getting Away From Face-To-Face Meetings
Buying able to buy legal templates online has been around for a while. What hasn’t been around is being able to work with a lawyer “face-to-face” while being online. Companies like Zoom are changing what is possible for law firms.
There is no shortage of money pouring into the legal technology sector. Clio (a practice management software) just raised $250M USD. There are organizing a massive lawyer conference in San Diego in October 2019. The event will include massive parties on the beach and guest stars.
Old school lawyers are in trouble. Law is changing, and lawyers that ignore it should start getting their resumes ready for Tim Hortons.
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