FAQs - Criminal law advertising service

Volume of enquiries

How does Contact Law generate enquiries?

Contact Law generates most of its leads from online sources such as search engines, directory listings and partner websites.
 
Additionally, we generate a number of enquiries from offline channels, including newspapers and legal helpline partners.

How many enquiries should my firm expect to receive each month?

The flow of leads you can expect varies each month. This is dependent on several things including your firm’s size, practice profile and geographical coverage.
 
Rest assured our lead distribution procedures are designed to ensure every firm is getting their fair share of leads. Your Account Manager will keep a close eye on your profile to ensure a smooth beginning - as always, please do feel free to contact them should you have any questions.

How will I receive the enquiries?

Clients will see your advert on our website. This contains your firm’s profile and contact details, including a dedicated freephone number that we will set up for you free-of-charge, pointing to your dedicated contact person. We can track the basic activity of this number and will regularly report this to you.
 
Often our other services will generate client enquiries that are eligible for this service and as such, are unable to be handled by the usual referral arrangement. Our Case Handlers will direct these clients to your firm either by directing them to your ad on our website, or by conferencing them through to your firm. They will always use your freephone number to contact you via phone. Please note that in order to comply with SRA regulations each client will be given the details of a minimum of two partner firms when contacting us direct. Don’t worry though; we will always aim to ensure the profile of each firm is different to ensure the client has the necessary and full choice, and you receive the fairest chance of new business as possible.

Does Contact Law track all enquiries?

No, because many of your enquiries will be outside of our visibility. Experience tells us that after seeing the Contact law advert, many of the more sophisticated clients will research your firm’s website as part of the evaluation process. For those that do, there is a good likelihood that they will then contact you via your regular phone number or email address on your website, rather than the tracked ones we provide on our site. As such, we have no visibility on how many of these ‘direct’ enquiries you receive.

Can I track direct enquiries?

If your contact person asks each and every new enquiry received how they hear of the firm, then yes, you would be able to keep track of these enquiries too. This represents marketing best practice and we recommend it to all firms we work with as it allows them to track their ROI on each and every marketing channel. It does require strong discipline to do it though, as well as a CRM system for recording the source of each lead.
 

Working with Contact Law clients

How should I handle the Contact Law client enquiries?

As you would handle all of the enquiries your firm receives. We do not ask that our firms provide a different service to Contact Law clients, but we would recommend that you follow best practice for customer service, so as to maximise the chances of instruction. This would include fee-earners making the time to spend 5-10 minutes on the phone to the client when they first call, or if they are not immediately available, ensuring the client receives a time for a quick call-back. Try to ensure that a real person answers the first call, rather than routing straight to voicemail. Some clients would rather try calling another firm than leave a voicemail and risk not being called back.

Do I need to change any other aspects of how I work with Contact law clients?

No, you deal with our clients in exactly the same way as you would with any other client. We recommend charging the same prices and having the same policies regarding meeting clients and taking money on account as the firm uses for all of its clients – this prevents any potential confusion. We are happy to advise you on best practices if you would like our view, as our separate civil law referral service provides us with a lot of experience on what works best with clients.

Will I make an immediate return on investment from Contact Law clients?

In the short-term there will inevitably be a delay between the first enquiries arriving, then instructing your firm and finally billing. Many firms do not accurately track which marketing source all of their billings come from, but if your firm does, in the medium-term you will almost certainly see that you make a good return. Furthermore, research shows that in the long-term the return on marketing investments will be three times as good as the return you make in the first year. That’s because for every pound of revenue a new client spends in the first year with a law firm, they will generate a further two pounds over the lifetime of their relationship through repeat business and word-of-mouth referrals.
 
Our in-house analysis shows that the 1,000+ firms on the Contact Law network billed over £6m of business between June 2011 and July 2012 from our leads. That’s an average ROI of 238%.

Are there other things I can do to maximise the number of enquires and instructions I receive?

Yes, you can experiment with different text in your firm’s profile, highlighting your legal expertise, geographic footprint and other features that make your firm different. Over time we should be able to perfect the message!
 
Important information

For [selected AoL] law, solicitors will charge a minimum fee of £250 to provide an initial consultation and written opinion on your case. We have a number of recommended law firms in our network who could provide this service to you at the most competitive price. If you would like to proceed, click ‘Paid advice’ below and one of our advisors will call you on a free-of-charge basis to discuss this further with you.