Referral is by far the best and fastest way to gain new attorney-clients and more cases for your legal nurse consulting business. Referral is not a gift. Referral business is something you have to earn. It is the result of providing excellent work product and excellent service.
Referral works because it provides instant credibility. Attorneys trust the opinions of their respected attorney colleagues. Referrals are beloved by Certified Legal Nurse Consultants because they not only work – they’re free. If you’re ready to ramp up referrals from attorneys apply these 5 steps.
- Point out that you prefer doing business by referral and communicate that preference to both attorney-prospects and attorney-clients. People like to feel singled out as special. If your company “only works with attorneys who are referred,” then each attorney you consult with feels like part of a select group. You can even continue this exclusivity to attorney-prospects who respond to your marketing strategies such as exhibiting or direct mail. Establish your ‘referral only’ rule with attorney-prospects in a way that aligns you with the attorney. “I’m sure your clients come mostly from referrals, too.” Most attorneys will acknowledge your preference and feel special when you indicate you are making an exception due to expanding your business into new areas (of town, specialty or whatever). However you choose to say it, convey that you prefer consulting with referred clients.
- After you have completed a case assignment and your attorney-client has nothing but glowing comments, that is the moment to ask for a referral. “As you recall, I work only with referred clients. I’d be honored to work with a few of your colleagues. Which of them could also benefit from my CLNC® services?” Ideally, the referring attorney will call ahead and smooth the way for you. Request names, not just future referrals. Assure your attorney-client of your commitment to her future cases.
- Contact the newly referred attorney-prospect(s) immediately. Mention the attorney who referred you and use information learned about the attorney-prospect in the communication.
- Quickly let the attorney-prospect know you qualify your attorney-clients just as attorneys would qualify you. You want to communicate you are in demand. Here is an example of exclusivity message: “I have room to take a new client. Attorney Smith advised that we are a perfect match for each other because my expertise matches the cases you handle.” Focus on setting up an interview (live or virtual) with the attorney to educate him about the benefits you offer. The odds of getting a case are much stronger if you accomplish a more formal interview.
- Whatever the outcome, call, write or email the original attorney who gave you the referral. Share a quick update and say thank you. Retie the connection again by sending the referring attorney a thank-you gift. Personalize the gift to make it something the attorney really likes. Perhaps a coffee shop gift card tucked in a CLNC mug or another CLNC promotional item they would use at their desk.
Success Is Yours,
Vickie L. Milazzo, RN, MSN, JD