When lawyers are seeking to establish contact with prospective clients – relevance is essential as a means by which to do so. Mike O’Horo details in Attorney at Work that “many lawyers struggle to generate relevant welcomed conversation with clients and prospects” – and therefore “the conversation you dangle as your hook to earn a calendar slot has to be relevant to the person’s role, situation, company — and the industry within which all that operates.”
Understand the business of your prospective client
O’Horo explains that if lawyers make a commitment to understanding the business of their prospective client before making contact, they’ll solve the challenge of access to discussions with that prospective client.
Simple emails are sufficient to establish first contact and request a discussion
He notes that the issue you can use as the basis to establish a focus of a conversation should be simple and this works whether you might know or don’t know the prospective client. Emails detailing the reason for a discussion are fine and should be utilized as a means by which to open discussions.
This is one of the prime means by which I established contact with many prospective clients on behalf of my law firm clients. I always based my emails on actionable commercial opportunities for prospective clients where the legal services of my clients were an essential component of realizing those commercial objectives.
Business leaders are usually interested in hearing about commercial opportunities
It’s important for lawyers to remember that business leaders are usually open to hearing about opportunities for expansion of the business or other opportunities for revenue and profit. And legal services are an integral component of realizing those opportunities. If a lawyer or firm can harness their unique knowledge of their local markets as a means by which to help clients access those markets – this is a highly effective means by which to build a client base outside the typical panels conducted by in-house counsel.
Ensure you do your research before reaching out
Before reaching out to a prospective client – ensure you do your research and determine what opportunities you may be able to assist them with to establish high relevance of the conversation for the prospective client. Lead with one or more of those opportunities in an introductory email requesting a conversation.
At the end of the day – if lawyers can learn how to think like the business professionals they are seeking to represent – they’ll understand how to develop business in a way which their ideal clients will very much appreciate as they seek to build their own businesses.
Lawyer Business Development Coaching
I help lawyers develop approaches to the C-Suite based on identifying the commercial objectives of companies and opportunities in their home jurisdictions custom tailored to prospective clients — via one-on-one video or audio coaching sessions. My experience includes hundreds of face-to-face meetings with prospective clients on behalf of law firms – where I helped clients realize how lawyers can help them achieve their commercial objectives. These meetings first required me to identify client needs – reaching out to those prospective clients and securing meetings with them on behalf of my clients and succeeding in securing those meetings. And shepherding those relationships to becoming new client engagements. For more information about how I might be able to help you build your law practice, please complete the form below and I’ll contact you promptly.
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