Can't Get Attorneys to Follow Up? Turn Your Content Into Business Development Leads Instead

by ON24
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ON24

What do you do when you can’t get your lawyers to follow up with clients and potential clients who have shown an interest in what they have to say? They don't reach out to people who have attended your events and webinars, or read your white papers. They don't call or send an email that establishes a connection, or that turns a warm lead into a prospective client. How do you handle it?

You’ve got two choices.

You can continue to hound them, to remind them of the opportunities they’re missing and the work they’re not getting (ie. you can burn up all of your goodwill trying to get leopards to change their spots), or you can solve the problem yourself by turning their content into a business development lead machine. 

In an earlier post, I listed the various qualified leads you can identify through your webinars: 

  • Frequent Flyers, who attend more than one webinar;
  • Evangelists, who forward your invitations; 
  • Finishers, who stay until the end;
  • Poll Takers, Questioners, and Openers, who actively participate in your webinars;
  • Post-Program Talkers, who thank your presenters after the show and provide feedback; 
  • Social Connectors, who reach out unprompted to connect with your presenters; and
  • Current Clients, who probably have unasked questions about topics in practices you don’t already provide.

Those are the leads you need to nurture, with new content that responds precisely to their questions, with invitations to additional activities and events that touch on the issues that concern them, with more information that shows what your lawyers can do and how it solves their problems. Some examples:

  • You see that Jane forwarded the invitation for your upcoming 2017 Tax Reform webinar to her colleagues. Send her additional articles and white papers on the tax law and ask her to pass along to others in her company who deal with tax matters. Better yet, offer her an in-house CLE seminar on the topic for her team.
  • The HR head of an important client attends your webinar on how the GDPR will affect US businesses. During the session, she asks about the cybersecurity implications of employee data under the new rules. Send her what your lawyers have written on that issue, and if there’s nothing on the shelf, get them to write something. While you’re at it, you might as well send it to everyone who attended the webinar, too, explaining that someone raised the question on the webinar so you prepared the article to help sort through the issues. Ask if anyone would like to talk to your cybersecurity lawyers. 
  • Bill provides valuable intel on how his company finances operations when he answers the polls on your crowdfunding webinar. Send him a separate note with the complete results from the polls as benchmarking data, and ask him if there are other issues he’d like to learn more about. Forward his response to the head of your financing team. 
  • Steve sends LinkedIn connection requests to your real estate lawyers immediately following your webinar on commercial lease disputes. Add him to your firm’s real estate mailing list so that he receives all of your RE content going forward. Send him a note to tell him you’ve done that, and ask if there are other mailings he’d like to start receiving.

Of course there’s no substitute for engaged lawyers who follow up with every lead, but sometimes it’s not possible. When that happens, wouldn’t it be good to have an active BD program to make that critical first connection? To answer – sometimes before they’re even asked – the questions of qualified leads, people who have demonstrated a real interest in what your lawyers have to say, potential clients who have legal and business needs you can fill? To have a BD program that generates its own leads?

Success will come from efforts that are creative and responsive to the needs of your qualified leads. What’s more, your lawyers will be more prone to do the follow-up themselves when you stop hounding them and start suggesting specific actions they can take. If you’d like to talk about your situation and what might work for firm, I’d welcome the conversation. Best, Sam

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[Samantha McKenna is a Regional Vice President, Sales at ON24Connect with her LinkedIn to learn how webinars can supercharge your firm's content efforts.]

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