Arming Your Ambassador of First Impressions

Remember the last time you called customer service? Then got sent to someone overseas? That was irritating. Well, the same applies to the intake administrator for your law firm. Whether you have a large operation or one person sitting at a desk, how you take you call-in leads—and turn them into profit—matters.

If you don’t have a strategy for how you handle random and strategic leads that come by phone, now is a great time to design a plan. For it’s often he or she who answers the questions best who gets the case.

First, consider whether or not your intake ambassador needs a script. For firms that have the luxury of employing someone who knows the business intimately and can conversationally qualify a client, this might not be necessary. For other practices, you might have found a warm and approachable intake expert that’s not quite up to speed on kinds of clients that would make a great fit.

Both scenarios require some oversight. A script or questionnaire can be a helpful aid for a person with the voice but not the knowledge. In this case, sit down to draft a conversational script that will carefully and quickly explain your firm while qualifying the caller—without closing the door too quickly. Sometimes that extra question or two can turn a borderline case into a real client.

Even if your intake person is well versed in how to answer a variety of questions from callers, it can’t hurt to review this process. You never know if you could be getting more business. Consider taping intake conversations or even physically listening in on a regular basis to make sure your ambassador is asking all the questions you would were you taking to a potential client.

Remember, you spend a lot of money pleading with people to call you. Don’t you think they deserve to have their expectations met when they finally do communicate with your firm? It’s your responsibility to connect the dots. After all, the person who makes your firm’s first impression can influence the decisions your clients make. Better hope they’re good ones.