First impressions are extremely important when speaking to potential clients. People create a first impression based on a variety of factors, but the most important one is how we address and communicate with each other. First impressions can guide subsequent social and professional treatment, and as a result, can influence how many new clients you acquire.
All of this directly impacts your bottom line and firm’s reputation. Let’s take charge when it comes to crafting a potential client’s mental image of you and your business. It simply cannot be overstated how essential it is to know the phrases that will help you quickly build rapport with claimants. Here are some phrases your intake staff can use over the phone to win claimants over in a matter of seconds:
“I understand how upsetting that may be.”
Empathize with the person on the other end of the phone. This phrase is the ultimate way of communicating your acknowledgment that they are going through a tough time and they are right to feel upset about their struggles, whether it be a Social Security disability denial or an insurance claim rejection after an auto accident. Fostering this informal chemistry and togetherness is key to making them feel both cared for and listened to. How many times have you spoken to a friend just to “get it all out”? Start this business relationship with a warm reception to a person in need of legal help.
“I will follow-up with you about this on ____”
Make your potential clients feel heard while also providing a realistic and grounded timeline in which you can follow-up with them. They’ve sought out legal advice, and giving structure to your working relationship can only benefit you both.
This inspires confidence in your service and abilities as an attorney to take charge and make decisions. Telling claimants when you’ll be in touch makes sense logistically too—a solidified timeline serves to curb needless inbound calls when there are no relevant updates to provide.
Yes isn’t always the answer, but it typically is our favorite one to hear. Focus on what you can do for the claimant, not what you can’t. Keep things positive when they are in a situation where the negatives are overwhelming. Having a positive attitude and stressing the
yessing good things will leave clients with a more positive outlook on the situation.
“What I heard you say is…”
Reflective listening is repeating back what you’ve heard from a potential client and lets them know you are on the same page. This is also a subtle way of letting the claimant know that you are making their problem your problem, too. At the end of the day, they just want a professional to be on their side and make this issue feel less intimidating and frustrating.
A Lack of Legalese
Chances are, people wouldn’t be calling you for legal assistance if they knew how to navigate the complexities of the law and court system alone. Be sure to keep the legal jargon at a minimum, as nobody wants to stop the conversation for definitions of various words or phrases. It doesn’t make people feel any less vulnerable, either. It may even make them feel more so! Drive home your point without confusing language or terms.
Keep it simple, and keep it clear.
In conclusion, make a genuine and personal connection with clients to leave a stellar impression. Always remember, the tips in this blog only work when you are being authentic. Authenticity is, of course, key to connection. Strive to be friendly, understanding, and most importantly, worth recommending to other potential clients. Knowing what a claimant wants to hear is the first step to getting both their trust, and their business.