Sam Glover, host of the Lawyerist Podcast on Legal Talk Network, recently interviewed Smith.ai’s Head of Growth and Education, Maddy Martin. Together they discussed the impact of automation and artificial intelligence (AI) on timely communication between lawyers and potential clients.
Quick responsiveness is crucial for success in obtaining potential clients, according to the 2019 Clio Legal Trends Report. Smith.ai enables lawyers to run more efficient offices by communicating effectively with every potential lead who calls or visits their website.
The report showed that, out of 500 potential client calls placed, 39% went to voicemail and 57% were never answered. Additionally, out of 1,000 emails, 60% never got returned and 71% of answered emails received inadequate responses.
People looking for the right lawyer will contact more than one firm to find the best fit. Not only is it critical to be timely in your response, but you must also provide meaningful information.
More than half of people who hire lawyers said their decision to hire a firm was based on the initial phone call. If there is no immediate response, the lead is lost. This makes the concept of a virtual receptionist an obvious benefit.
Virtual receptionists can also filter unqualified leads. Almost six in 10 people that have a consultation don’t end up hiring the attorney. It’s imperative to be proactive when sharing information that will help people self-screen.
The ability to screen callers using questions and custom criteria specific to a firm's intake platform (CRM) and/or marketing automation software guarantees more customers. Virtual receptionists can complete intake forms. If a lead is not ready to commit to an appointment, they are immediately logged into the system for follow up. If they are ready to proceed, the receptionists will schedule a meeting directly on your calendar.
Listen to the full podcast on Legal Talk Network. Maddy's interview starts around the 4:00 minute mark.
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Smith.ai can be the receptionist on your phone as well as on your website. Web chat is a smart alternative for people who prefer text-based communication that is instant and discreet (like law firm clients who may have sensitive matters to discuss). The receptionists at Smith.ai are well trained in screening and scheduling. They know how to guide qualified leads through the screening process, and filter ones who are not a good fit for your law firm. A few simple questions allow only valuable callers to get through, and booked for a consult. As soon as that's done, the potential client will likely stop their search and your chances to win the client increase significantly.
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