FAQs - Working with Contact Law
Volume of referrals
How many leads should my firm expect to get each month?
The flow of leads your firm can expect will vary each month. This is dependent on several things, including your firm’s size, practice profile, subscription model 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.
Should my firm be converting most of the leads referred to me by Contact Law?
Only if you are particularly gifted at convincing clients to instruct you! In our experience, solicitors who have extremely good selling skills can achieve around a 50% conversion rate. Converting more than 50% is difficult; even quality client introductions can decide against instructing a firm when their situation changes (e.g. house purchase / business sale falls through).
What proportion of Contact Law leads should I convert?
We see a substantial variance in the instruction rate across our network, with some firms managing to convert 50% of our referrals, and some only 10%. The average rate that we see is 20-25%.
There are two key factors attributed to a high conversion rate – the speed at which the solicitor calls a client and how well they sell themselves to win new business.
How to work with Contact Law clients
How should I make contact with clients introduced by Contact Law?
We recommend that the first contact is a telephone call to the client. This call is simply to introduce yourself to the client, reassure the client that your firm has the time and relevant expertise to deal with the client’s matter, and to explain costs and funding options. We recommend this call is kept to 5 or 10 minutes, and we do not expect you to give any formal legal advice. It is a good idea if the call is made by the solicitor whom the client will be working with, as this helps to build rapport and gain a commitment from the client to move forward to the next stage.
Do I need to offer different pricing to Contact Law clients?
No, you deal with clients we introduce in exactly the same way as you would with any other prospective client (although do remember Rule 9 when drafting your client care letter). The only commitment we make to the client about your fees is that they will be the same as if they contacted you directly. As such, you can set your fees at the level you would normally deem appropriate for the client. We do find firms that take a more flexible approach to fee-setting tend to get more client conversions over time. For example, we have a number of very successful firms with hourly rates well above Court rates but that are very reassuring to clients, offering fee caps, fixed fees and CFAs.
Should I offer a free meeting to Contact Law clients?
This is entirely your choice. Our advice is to do the thing that maximises the likelihood of the client instructing. If the client comes across credibly on the phone and there is a significant piece of legal work to do, but they request a free meeting to help them choose which firm to use; then yes, we would suggest you do (but keep it brief!). If, however, you feel that the client may not be committed to the case, charging for advice at the initial meeting will help ensure they are serious and act as a stepping stone to committing further funds to take the case forward.
Should I take money on account when a Contact Law client instructs?
Again, this is entirely your choice. Best practice dictates that you should for any new client where there is a potential credit risk. At the very least, you should get a signed client care letter to ensure you get paid.
Potential fee income from Contact Law clients
What is the average value of a Contact Law instruction?
Projected returns will always depend on the type of case, client and practice area. However, when evaluating our network, the average value of an instruction is around £1,200.
What level of fee income could I make from Contact Law clients over the course of a year?
The vast majority of firms renew their subscription with Contact Law each year since they make a welcome additional income stream from the clients Contact Law introduced. The amount of fee income made is highly variable from firm to firm but will usually be a welcome addition of revenue that would not otherwise have been earned. We do not suggest you will need to hire lots more fee earners to cope with the additional work, but we are confident that you will generate an additional amount of fees and work which will keep your fee earners more fully utilised.
Will I make an immediate return on investment from Contact Law?
In the short-term there will inevitably be a delay between the first referrals arriving, then instructing your firm and finally billing. However, in the medium-term your firm will almost certainly 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 with the firm through repeat business and word-of-mouth referrals.
Our 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%.