In today’s episode we’re sharing a speaking engagement by Gary Falkowtiz on Intake from MaxLawCon 2019.
Gary P. Falkowitz is the Managing Partner and Founding Attorney of the Falkowitz Law Firm PLLC‚ one of the premiere personal injury law firms in New York. He is the CEO of Intake Conversion Experts, LLC, a 24/7 legal call center whose intake specialists have been trained to provide top-notch customer service to claimants contacting your law office.
Gary is also the author of The Complete Guide To Law Firm Intake.
Watch the presentation here.
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Transcript: “Intake” with Gary Falkowitz
Run your law firm the right way. This is the maximum lawyer podcast, podcast, your hosts, Jim hacking and Tyson metrics. Let’s partner up and maximize your firm. Welcome to the show.
In today’s episode, we’re throwing it back to max law con 2019. By sharing Gary Falco, its presentation on intake. Let’s get to it.
I want you to want me raise your hand if you know that song. Maybe you saw the movie 10 Things I Hate About You. If you’re a little younger, right, I want to do a little karaoke. First, let me thank the organizers here, Jim and Tyson for doing a fantastic job really impressed by what you’ve created. And I’ve been following you guys for a while we had some calls. So kudos to you and keep it up. Thank you for having me. I’ll apologize for the New York accent. Right? I tend to be loud and fast. So I could preface it with the apologies. So later on, you can’t get mad at me. quick background on myself. I’m an attorney. I’ve been practicing for 15 years. And I had jumped to the point where I was managing the intake for Parker Wakeman, a National Pie law firm in New York. And it was three weeks into my tenure there. And I go, wow. And I said, Wow, what is going on here we have these blackberries. We’re getting these leads. I’m seeing some I’m hearing about some of the numbers for cases we were resolving or what we were resolving cases for. And I was intrigued because they didn’t teach me as I’m sure they didn’t teach you about how to run a law firm in law school, and how to run that business. So I immediately went to my boss, Jerry Parker said, Jerry, thanks so much for this opportunity. Oh, by the way, if another opportunity comes up within the firm working involved in the business side of things, that’d be wonderful. And he sort of gave me those the words of hey, thank you. But please go back to your office and do what I paid you to do. I guess luck has it. Uh, I got promoted to managing attorney intake department, I ended up being the face of the law firm on TV, ended up managing our intake process or referral process got know a lot of lawyers in the business. And I realized that there was a tremendous hole in our industry. And it was at the intake level, and we were leaving way too much money on the table. And the goal for all of us, right at the end of the day is to sign more cases without spending any more money on marketing. Now you guys know what’s going on here. You see what’s being spent. Right? You see the you know what the cost per clicks are? You know, that best means stealthily Oh, my lawyer, this is old, by the way. So it’s probably 30% More than that. I’m sure we have to spend a lot of money, most expensive keywords, lawyers right up there next to a casino, which is really no coincidence. Is it because we’re gambling? But why? Why are we spending so much money. And the reason is very simple. Because our ability to make money on retain case is very high. And we can make a lot of money from those cases that we retain. Guys, it might be as simple as let’s go spend another half million dollars on marketing, let’s make that phone, right. Let’s get those leads as web chats, and then the web increase, but that’s going to get you leads, the goal is not to get the most leads, the goal is to get the most retain cases. And this is how it really works. And this is big, you’ve got to have a bridge, you have to understand that there is a bridge between what the claimant wants and what you want. And I’m gonna go back for a moment because I kind of forgot what the whole The whole reason I said that song, I want you to want me. Now you might think it’s because you’re a lawyer, and you really want these claimants to want your services and and we just want more and more clients. That’s not my point. My point is, in this day and age, the claimants have so many options at their fingertips, that when they call you, they want you to want them. They want you to want them so bad that they don’t have to call anybody else. And if they’re not convinced that you want them as a client, they’ll just call one of the other law firms. I’m gonna throw out a little test real quick. By the way, I have a book it’s a complete guide to law firm intake. If you take a picture of me your video of me and you post on social media and you tag me and you do say something about intake hashtag intake, I will send three copies of my book to your law firm I promise you that there are some nuggets of valuable nuggets in that book. So they want you to want them now the thing about this bridge is in this day and age how easy is it for a claimant to find a lawyer everybody I know everybody I know who’s an adult it may be some kids know wall so they know that beat to Salina on Barnes so Leno and bonds injury internet right you know it you should know what do you mean don’t live in New York. I’m sure you’ve heard it right. It’s so easy to find a lawyer. It’s so easy to speak with 234 lawyers, I am moving. I had the contact I always contact because I’m always thinking about considering my options, whether it’s just a how much money I’m spending or the quality of service. So I’m moving and I have to contact multiple Moving Companies. And I gotta tell you, I went with a well, one of the more expensive moving companies, because of the conversations I had with him. And because he made it feed, it made me feel like he knew what I was going through the cheapest one, which probably some people would have gone with because it didn’t matter was less money. It was a robotic conversation, robotic, hear the numbers is what it is, I needed more. And the reality is he didn’t realize that I or maybe he didn’t care that I had options. At the end of the day, our claimants have options at their fingertips with these smartphones, with the web, right the advent of the internet, they can add they can they can copy if you haven’t seen it, I can tell you, as a CEO of an intake company that handles general answering service and intake or retention for law firms throughout the country. I can tell you that claimants will copy the summary of their circumstance, and then paste it and five other law firms sites, and who usually wins said the first one who response so now the more apparent and more attractive your bridges, the easier it is to cross. Now you might say, Gary, what do you what do you what’s that mean? Well, when a claimant calls up, and you ask them, Well, can you give me that police report? I’d love to see that police report to see what it says because there’s some questions here, does that make it easy for the claimant, you want me to go back into work, I have another law firm I just spoke to that said they’ll have someone in my house in two hours, and you want me to go get a police report. So you can review it, guys 20 years ago, on a Friday evening, if you were an attorney, you can get a call from a new lead. Tell that claimant that the case seemed very interesting, call back on Monday, tell them that you’d call back on Monday about whether you can help. And 20 years ago, you probably still had a good shot at signing that claim. And I dare you, and I really don’t dare you. But I dare you to try that now. And we’ll talk about some of these more detailed things that you can focus on as your own law firm. So having more attractive bridge, because you’ve earned if you’re making it difficult for a claimant to sign with you. If you tell a claimant Well, I can have someone at your house on Friday at three o’clock. And today’s Wednesday, and it’s two o’clock. Oh, you can have someone at my house and Friday at three o’clock. I happen to be busy a Friday at three o’clock. When’s your next appointment? It’s not about you. It’s about the claimant think about the question from I can have someone your house tomorrow at three o’clock to I can have someone there as soon as possible. How’s today in an hour, make it about the claimant? I get passionate, I get loud I’m sorry. Okay, this is a big one. Blackjack raise you didn’t play blackjack before. The ones that didn’t raise I know you played blackjack to the way you went and blackjack, because you have to make an assumption, you have to assume that the dealer has a 10 that’s facedown. And then you make a decision because statistics say or show reveal that if you act based upon that assumption, you’re putting yourself in a better position to win. Same thing goes right now there are law firms. If your intake specialists if your law firm if your process is not assuming that the claimant has already called two other law firms, you will lose. You know you talk about and I think Seth and Harlan and these guys, they are shoulder deep in what they do. And Harland always says you don’t know what you don’t know, if you’re not reacting to the society of where we are right now, from a technology standpoint, and you’re not changing. You’re not adapting, you’re putting yourself at a disadvantage to your competitors. You just are. And here’s something that I’d like you to do. I want you to go back to your office. And I want you to ask whether it’s Listen, we have a whole slew of lawyers here we have law firms that are solo practitioners, we have law firms that have 10 plus lawyers, whoever picks up the phone for you at your law firm. I want you to ask them that if acclaiming contacted us and one of our competitors, why would they choose us? They need to be able to answer that question, guys. Whether it’s statistics about how good your law firm is, how friendly you are, how experienced you are, how personable that intake specialist is okay, she can she or he can say well, because I’m really a nice guy. And I get along great with India with claim it’s fine. That’s good. That’s something to build on. But if your staff if your receptionist if your paralegal can answer that question, then it goes back to you don’t know what you don’t know. You have to be acting under the assumption that you have competitors. Even now, I consult law firms on intake as well. I’m shoulder deep in this stuff, guys. I left that law firm, and they’re great law firm. I left the law firm to begin consulting law firms on intake so that I can help them figure out where their holes are in their law firm. Then I opened up a call center where law firms will outsource their general answering service or their intake and retention for some of the higher volume mass tort stuff to my company. And I have my own law firm get gary.com So I’m from I am shoulder head deep. I’m underwater and intake. I love every second of it. You have to understand how much more revenue you can have if you maximize your intake process. So here’s a question for you Raise your hand if you have money in the stock market not going to ask you how much how much, okay, everyone has good a lot of people do raise money, if you have a stockbroker, some of the managers your investments, okay? Raise money. If you have someone that matches your intake process, fewer hands. I’ll tell you why that’s interesting. And I have it somewhere, here it is. If your stock portfolio, if your portfolio doubled, or tripled, and three to five years, you would be ecstatic, right? And you have this broker who’s making sure that you’re selling when you’re supposed to sell and buying when you’re supposed to buy. And you’d be ecstatic if you could double or triple that your investment. Yet in our industry, we’re not doubling or tripling our core, our our initial investment, sometimes we’re doing a 10x, a 50x, a 1,000x return on our investment in our business, I’ll even go one step further. Sometimes our cost per acquisition was $0, because of our reputation within the industry, and because of our relationships, and when we made money, you can’t even compute what your ROI is, because there was no cost per acquisition. It was your friend’s cousin, who knows you’re a personal injury lawyer or some other type of lawyer, yet, we don’t have someone managing the front end of our business. And I’m not pointing fingers, right. Because I’ve been there. I’ve fixed it for multiple law firms. But if you guys are going to spend money, we’re in an in a very interesting environment where we can’t cold call people, I told you before how I want you to want me, we a lot of us put our own money out there gambling, hoping that someone’s going to call us up. Now, Tyson was saying that in Missouri, you get to send something out 30 days later, that’s pretty cool. You don’t get to do that everywhere. We’re everywhere else or most other places, you’ve got to put your name out there, you put your phone number out there have a really attractive story and hope that they give you a call. Hopefully they only give you a call, but they’re going to call multiple people like to call it sales. And I have I am not offended by that it is sales. But it’s more than sales. It’s reassuring, someone is calling you, they are interested in your service, they haven’t chosen your service. They’re interested in your service. Now you got to bring them to your you got to bring them over the bridge and reassure them that they did the right thing by calling and my question to you is, if the ROI could be so tremendous, why aren’t we putting more time and effort and potentially money into ensuring that we’re not losing or minimizing that ROI? Why aren’t we treating our law firms investments the same if not better, than we treat our personal investments? Little comic for you there? Hopefully it gives you a little bit of a smirk. Okay, unlike the stock market, here’s what’s interesting, again, we have that stockbroker. But here’s what’s funny, unlike the stock market, we have real control over the results. We have a roadmap in terms of how to litigate a car accident case, you guys can do that in your sleep, you know how to maximize the ROI of those cases 99 out of 100 times, we know how to maximize value, how to negotiate. And we know how deep the pockets of where we’re trying to get money from our yet again, we have a stockbroker, we’re hoping that he doubles or triples our investment. And here we are, we’re we’re doing a 10x or 20x. And we kind of just close our eyes, throw money in the in the air and hope that it works out for the best. So what’s the best metric available to assess your intake? I’m sure you’ve heard these terms before. But I want to go through it from my own definition, my own experience, conversion percentage, your conversion percentage is this, and I’ll go through it again in a moment. If you have 100 cases that qualify for retention, how many of those Did you retain? If you retained 80 of them, then you have an 80% conversion rate. If you retain 40 of them, then you have a 40% conversion rate. And let me be clear about something here, guys, time is not on your side, you must maximize the time on that first phone call when you’re speaking with claimant, so that you never have to call them back again. Now, is that going to happen all the time? Of course, it’s not. But I’ll tell you one of the issues that most law firms have. They don’t empower their staff to determine whether a case qualifies on that first call. So what happens is they have to call back or say, You know what, I’ll be right back. I gotta go speak with a lawyer or I got him that could be interesting. Let us figure let’s do some investigation. And you will lose, educate and empower your staff to understand what types of cases you want, and get them signed up and make sure you reassure that claim, and you clearly communicate to that claiming that this meets our criteria. And let’s talk about a generally speaking, what’s the worst that can happen? You sign a case that you don’t want and you rejected post retention. Yes, I know there are some state rules about having to file this or file that and that’s fine. Most of the time, it requires a phone call and a letter if you don’t want that case. Now, if your process in house doesn’t allow you or give you the ability to review those retain cases immediately. That’s a whole other issue. but your job is that when a case qualifies, get that case retained as soon as possible, and make sure your staff can qualify that case on the first call, I put up these numbers. Generally speaking, for general negligence cases nationwide, the average conversion percentage of qualified cases is 70 to 75%. That means we’re leaving 25 to 30% of cases that we want on the table, people that contacted us for mass torts, which a lot of my clients do mass torts, the average is 50 to 60%. That’s 40 to 50%. With even a table, why the number is so low, competition is intense. And we have too many leaks in our process. That’s it, it’s that simple. We’re not aware or we don’t appreciate the level of competition, or we don’t have the appropriate or most efficient process in place to maximize our conversion percentage. So where should the numbers be? Well, for you general negligence, or auto accident law firms out there, because you have the ability to see these claimants, face to face, it should be greater than 90%. For those mass tort law firms, it should be greater than 75%, which means that there’s a lot of room for improvement, you can see that right there. And I don’t know what your average fee is, I just took a nice round number. Some law firms, it’s more than that, some it’s less, but you see the difference. 10 more cases is a big deal. 50 more cases is a big deal. And that’s not about spending more money in marketing. That is not about spending more money in marketing. It’s about maximizing what you do when those calls or leads come in, there’s one law firm, I just had a conversation with, they just sent me an email this morning, their phone calls are going dead early on in the conversation. That’s a leak in the process. There’s another story I just heard today, where a law firm had a phone number that was marketed. And it wasn’t even working and may not have been working since March of last year. Those are leaks in the process. And unfortunately for all of us, including myself, for all of us, we have leaks in the process. And if we don’t have someone that’s looking or reviewing over what that process is to ensure there are not inefficiencies or huge holes. And we don’t know, we don’t know. And we’re certainly not maximizing our revenue. Now, these are my own KPIs, key performance indicators, statistics that I want you to be aware of. And I want to go through them pretty quickly with you. Your want percentage scary. What’s that? So don’t confuse me. Okay. If I get 1000 leads last month, how many qualified when you hear the word qualified, you hear the word want, it’s the same thing, in my opinion, how many of them qualified. And remember, we have to make that qualification decision. On the first call, we do not have the luxury to say I’ll give you a call back in a week after I review the facts of your case, do some case law studies and speak to some colleagues. So at another law firm or something? How many of those cases What’s your want percentage? Why is that important? To you marketing marketing is doing? Right? It tells you what I want to know my cost per qualified case, is that here as well? No good because it’s the same thing. My cost per qualified case, everybody’s like, Oh, what’s your, what’s your cost per retainer? What’s your cost per lead? That’s not so important. If you want to judge your marketing, it’s what’s your cost per qualified case, if my marketer is getting me 5000 leads and my cost per lead is 80 cents. That means nothing to me, if I only wanted one case, and I spent $50,000, you got to know. So if you’re qualifying appropriately, and they talked about automation, they talked about software, if using the appropriate software, you should easily know, here are the cases I got here, the leads I got from this marketing source, here are the leads from that marketing source that I wanted. And here’s my one percentage. Why why that’s important going forward is so that you can hold your marketing company accountable. Hey, you know, you guys have been great. It’s been a 35%, what percentage 35% of your leads have been qualified every month for the last year? And he just rats 4%? What happened last month? Can you get it fixed? You know what it is? Because we’ve been using the same criteria for the last two years. Big deal. Next to your conversion percentage, we just talked about it. You need to know that. What does that tell you? Is that tell you about your marketing? No doesn’t it tells you about your intake process. If you’re signing 100 out of 100 cases that you want, you got a strong intake process, you might want to actually loosen up the criteria and get more cases. But if your conversion percentage is 40%, that’s an issue. That’s an end. By the way, I’ve seen both. I’ve seen I’ve I’ve consulted with law firms that are signing 400 cases a month and their conversion rate hovers around 96%. Yes, I said that correctly. 400 cases they’re attending a month and our conversion percent is about 96%. I’ve seen law firms that retain about 100 cases a month and our conversion rate was at 40 something percent. But we’re all fallible. But you know, hey, we all have issues. Your retained percentage of those leads, how many did I retain? You won’t know your cost per retainer. You want your customer to know your cost per qualified case whenever you cost per retainer. It’s important to know
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Your average time to follow up on web leads. Guys do some research here. What is it? Are you waiting an hour? Are you not following up on a web lead that comes in on a Saturday morning at 11am? Until Monday at 10am? Are you not following up on a web lead that comes in at Thursday night and 730? until Friday at 9am? It’s a big deal. If you’re not in this day and age, we better be 20 471 way or another you want to outsource it to my company outsource somewhere else, you better have someone picking up those phone calls and calling back those leads. I’m not saying that 3am ones those can be a little bit inappropriate sometimes. Although I’ve made that call, I promise you I have you need to know what the average is. Is your staff telling you when you sit down and talk to your staff? Are they saying oh no, we get to them. But we wait till two o’clock to call them back. I’ve heard that before. You have to assume that the claimant that just contacted you contacted two other law firms? Yes, I’m repeating myself. Yes, I believe that’s the best way to teach. I know it’s the best way that I learned average no response time before quitting. Let’s figure out those words average no response time before quitting. In other words, how long did you go radio? How long was the claimant radio silent for that you said, then I did not interested in us. They haven’t called us back. It’s been four days. Now. I will tell you from first ever, by the way, everything I’m telling you, everything I’m telling you is from experience. It’s not gospel, it’s not fact. But it’s from experience. So I saw it. Okay, so I need to say that. So you don’t think I’m making something up to make my lecture conversation more effective. In my company where we handle the retention for some law firms, we will not close out a queue, we only get paid for the retention side of things, we only get paid my company if we get a case signed. So we’re very persistent, we’re not going to quit so easily. You’d be surprised at how many cases we won’t close out a case until it’s 30 days of silence, at least. And if we speak with the claimant, it can keep going we’ve retained cases that were seven months and then take seven months now because we were having, you know, harassing the claimant. But because every time we spoke with them wasn’t the right time, but they were still very interested. Oh, I’m going on vacation. Oh, my mother’s in the hospital. Now it’s not a good time I need to review with my husband, whatever it is, they’re still interested. We kept calling. If you’re, if you’ve decided in your law firm, that you come to the conclusion, well, listen, they call we call four times. Okay, we left four messages, we sent out four emails, they’re not interested. That’s not true. It’s not necessarily true. Why not keep going? Why not hear the words that we know we don’t want to hear? But maybe we do. I went with somebody else. Because at least we get closure. I’m a big closure guy. He broke up with me. I’m married don’t have kids. But I’m a big closure guy.
Right? If someone doesn’t want my law firm, I just want to know for sure. Because it’s the worst feeling. It’s a worse feeling when I when I get it after three weeks or five weeks or seven weeks. And I realize Ah, how many of them did I close earlier years ago? Next one? mail out percentage versus electronic signature versus in person that firm versus in person? Not at firm? These are the ways you sign up cases? Raise your hand if you’re not yet. Yet is there on purpose, if you’re not yet using electronic signature for retention? few hints. Unless there’s some law that I’m not aware of that might exist in your state for your case type. You need to consider it because your competitors are and because it gives you the ability to do the following. Hi, ma’am. And I could do it a lot better than this. But based on everything you just told me you qualify for retention. What I’d like to do now so that we can begin our investigation immediately on your behalf is to have you signed something called a retainer. I want you to review of it I’m also going to stay on the phone with you as you review it so that when we hang up this phone call, you’ve retained my law office and there’s one less thing you have to worry about. Pretty cool. Everyone here should be doing something like that. Average signup time between qualifying and signing talked about that a little bit before. I hate when a client when an intake specialist and usually it’s because lack of training so we have to fix it. But when an intake specialist says When are you available to meet with one of our investigators. Oh, next next Wednesday might work. Excellent. We’ll have someone at your house next Wednesday, two o’clock sound good, great. We have, we have to convey urgency for multiple reasons. Two of the obvious reasons are one, we want to get this investigation started immediately just in case there any issues were need to be aware of until ways we want them to be off the market. We don’t want them looking elsewhere. So if we could change our question to from When are you free to? Are you available today? Two o’clock. That’s a big difference. We have to convey urgency, retained, then rejected percentage. And that’s exactly what it sounds like. What percent of cases that we retained? Did we ultimately reject? Gotta keep an eye on this, it tells you about what your intake and retention criteria is, if you’re rejecting 50% of the cases that you’re retaining, then there’s something wrong, we have to figure out why are we rejecting those cases? And can we can we figure something out earlier on in the intake level intake stage so that we don’t retain those cases that we’re ultimately going to reject? Gotta be aware of that. And by the way, you have to do that pretty quickly. You can’t wait six months to figure out that some case that was retained is the worst law firm ends up rejecting some case, six months, you have to retention, and then they go yell at the intake staff, why would you retain this case, this is a waste of our money, a waste of our time, we never should have investigated in this. It took us six months to figure that out. You have a bigger issue, much bigger issue, average number of cases qualified on first call, we talked about that before. So all these CRMs and case and intake management software companies, right? They will have a status, which everyone in here should hate. But it’s got to be there because there’s always an exception to the rule. And that status is under review or investigating or or attorney review. Right? And why do I hate it? Because it’s kicking the can down the road? It’s not making a decision yet, because we’re nervous, we’re gonna make the wrong decision. Right. So what we have to figure out is, what percent of the cases are we qualifying for the first call? And the ones that we’re not? Why are we not? Are we not educating? Or are we not empowering? And those are two big things. And then lastly, the reasons claimants provide for not proceeding. That’s I want to know this, you learn a lot. When you ask a claimant that says, you know, we went somewhere else. Okay. But you know, before we hang up, by the way, good luck, you know, I know you wherever you went, they’re going to treat you well. But just so I know, what was it about our law firm that you chose to go elsewhere? Your intake specialist cursed us out? They did. I’m so sorry to hear that. Oh, your intake specialist said the only time they had an investigator available was on a Monday, I’m never available on Mondays, ask the question asked more, get more guys, let’s learn about where we are weak, and where we’re strong. Now, this is just basic stuff. We talked about it before giving you an idea of what percentage conversion percentage and retain percentage, I don’t think we have to go through the mass math per se. But it’s certainly there for you. Why are we losing qualified cases, this is sort of the other list that I hope you kind of bring back to your firm and and think about trying to figure out why you can’t maximize ROI. Sometimes, we may have the wrong person on the phone. If you’re not listening to calls. And Seth brought this up earlier, I remember being at my old law firm and going to some conference and them telling me how important it was to hear your staff on the phone. And it’s it’s tough to do it live because you have other work to do. So I remember starting to listen to calls. The next statement I make is is not exaggerated. Every single phone call was able to be improved, every single phone call was able to be improved. Now, the first reaction is I’m going to gain some weight and get gray very quick, because this is I’m realizing how what our issues are. But then the second reaction is, right. This is we could fix this. We could feel we could talk about it as a team. I could tell everybody what some of these issues are. And I can hold my staff accountable to what my expectations are. Right? We used to call them soft balls, when a claimant tells you that they’ve been injured, compassion with reassurance. So man, what happened was, hey, I just broke my arm. I’m in the hospital. One option is when did that happen? Not a great response. The other option is oh my god, I’m so sorry to hear that compassion. But you did the right thing by calling We handle cases like that all the time. Can I ask you some questions about what happened? Sure. Compassionate reassurance is a softball. It’s a great opportunity. And if your team isn’t doing that, if they’re not thinking about little things to be liked by this claimant, then they lose to the other law firm they just spoke with compassion and reassurance there is nothing more powerful at intake than providing compassion and be really being reassuring, wrong message being conveyed. It is what it sounds like. If you’re not telling the claimant What the law firm can do and how they can do it. And why it’s important to move forward to law firm, then you’re just answering questions don’t bothers me. I’m gonna tell you a quick story. Two years ago, my iPhone broke. And I kept having to call apple and Verizon because no one was taking responsibility for why it wasn’t working. And I went through this for no joke, three to four months. Now, one might say, Gary, why don’t you just switch phones? I mean, what are you doing? And one of the reasons why is because the tech at Apple, every time whichever tech it was, every time I called that tech said to me, Oh, we handle we’ve handled that problem before, give me some time, I’ll figure it out for you. And every time I fell for it every single time, but he calmed me down, you can imagine, right? How important I got a family I got a business that cell phone, as everyone in here understand. We know it’s pretty important, you know, item for us. But every time he said that, I was willing, my stress level my anger, my impatience would come down a notch or two, because it’s okay, this person is listening to me, making me feel like they know what I’m going through, and they can fix it. And I realize, dammit, that’s intake, that’s intake claimants calling up all they want to hear is that what they’re going through, you can handle, that’s all they want to hear, then you got to be likable, then you got to give them, you know, the most appealing bridge and you got to make them sign the case. But at the end of the day, they just want you to reassure them, that they did the right thing by picking up the telephone, or taking out the telephone and dialing your firm number. And when you start to listen to calls, you’re going to realize that that is missing. That component at intake is missing way too often. Lack of coming to go through these a little bit quicker lack of customer service, not categorizing your statuses status seeing appropriately. And you’re using your software, lack of accountability, not listening to calls, lack of attorney involvement. I’m going to show you a photo in a moment, not monetizing referrals. I hate this guy’s referrals are a part of the business. I’m heavily involved in referring cases out. And if I’m not following up on those referrals is the possibility of losing money as a law firm that I began consulting with. And I realized that they referred out about 500 cases, the year prior. And I asked him Okay, so how many of those cases retained? Do you get paid on? And they were having a hard time giving me that answer. I said, Okay, what are the follow up processes like with that law firm, and they were having a hard time giving me those answers. And I was getting angry because I realized I wasn’t losing money. They were losing money, a lot of money. So we had to go back. And I gotta tell you, there were 13 cases that the other law firm resolved. And this law firm was not paid or was not even marked as a referring attorney on there’s way too much money being lost or lost in a poor referral process, not tracking key performance indicators, using outdated technology, not considering appropriate vendors, a poor intake culture, not understanding the claimants mentality. And that’s the mentality of shopper and instant gratification. They shop and they want an answer. Now, if you make them wait, or you make them believe that you’re the only game in town, you will lose, and then not recognizing the black holes. Here’s some statistics to consider when evaluating your intake. Only 10% of sales people make more than three contacts. I have a question for you. That’s you know what, let’s see what it is. New Web lead comes in and be honest, doesn’t matter. I’m not taking your name down new web lead comes in how many times let’s go this way. In this room, raise your hand, if your affirm will follow up at least 10 times before closing the case out for no response. Guys, I see less than five hands. It’s a big deal. 80% of sales are made on the fifth to 12 contact. Only 13% of customers believe a salesperson can understand their need 30 to 50% of sales go to the vendor that responds first, we talked about that. If you follow up with a web leader than five minutes, you’re nine times more likely to convert them. 80% of calls go to voicemail and 90% of first time voicemails are never returned. That’s why you keep going. That’s why you stay persistent. Now this is a photo. What is it? Anybody car dealership? I have that here because sometimes people learn better through a photograph. And I want you to think about this photograph. When you go back to your law firm. Raise your hand if you’re in your car dealership by everybody here Excellent. You go and sit down you speak with a salesperson you spend a half hour to 45 minutes to go over the the metrics of the type of vehicle you want. They go over with you what the cost of that is, and you just go out you know, oh, I got to think about it. What does the salesperson do next? Come on, say it somebody anybody get the sales manager by the way, every time every time and I said Damn. Another intake lesson. Here I am. You think their ROI that dealerships ROI is better than your law firm? I don’t think so. I don’t think so at all, but they realize that their goal is to get a check in their hands and keys in yours. And the best way to do that is to make you feel special. And that if you’re a true Boom, an interested buyer. They don’t want you leaving that door, that dealership, why would we not? Now, I don’t know if everyone has these resources available to them. But if you did, why would you not get a lawyer on the phone? Every single time a case qualified? Yes. Do I think that’s the goal? And that should be the golden rule? Of course I do. And there, you can come down and go to the Silver Rule, which is, every time a case qualified, that was a strong case, fine. But think about it, if we know if we’re following the blackjack assumption, and we know and we believe that the claimant is calling to other law firms. I guarantee you you call three law firms, you’re not getting three lawyers on the phone? Don’t you want to be the one that puts the lawyer on the phone? Doesn’t that puts you in a better spot a better position to win? And isn’t it worth your time and money to do that? If the case qualifies, I believe it is another one. I think everyone here should go to their to should go to Google and type in their law firm name. And look at the hours that they’re open. Because if you say nine to five, you’re hurting your law firm. You guys know it, you all I’m talking about the injury lawyers here. You all get a lead every once in a while where a claimant just had an accident and is on the way to the hospital or is at the hospital. Accidents happen 24/7 That claimant who is still not injured terribly enough, where they can look up a law firm on Google will look at multiple law firms near me right near me. And they’ll see times and they’ll skip over everyone that says closed, closed, closed, open. You better be open 24/7 electronic signature we talked I did we talked about it. I don’t know if we did. We did. You have to be using electronic signature. It has to be in your practice the gold nuggets, too many law firms want that clear case, that strong liability, strong injury case. And I submit to you, and I think you’d agree that you’ve had many cases, many leads come into your office that were questionable at the outset. But you decided to take a leap of faith and retain that case. And that case turned out to be one of your bigger nuggets, one of your bigger revenue cases of the year. You cannot ignore the smaller cases. You cannot say yeah, that looks like it’s gonna be a small one. I know it’s clear liability, but they’re only complaining of a little bit of back pain, and they’re not sure they’re gonna go to the doctor tomorrow. It still might be worth your time. 10 things your firm must do and getting to the end here. So for those who are sleeping, wake up, we’re almost done. 10 things your law firm must do. Sign more cases, listen to calls, track KPIs, review all decisions made, enforce strict procedures, have attorneys get involved, improve and strengthen your intake packet. It can’t be a 10 page retainer that doesn’t work. Hold frequent intake meetings holder for all firms more accountable, keep your intake staff motivated and prepare, prepared and convey the reassurance, the interest and the urgency. That’s in my book, whether it’s general answering service, whether it’s intake and retention, whether it’s consulting, whether you’re thinking about getting a mass torts and you want to co counsel I am Head deep underwater and intake. I love the topic. I think it can have an immediate and significant impact on your revenue. Guys. Thank you very much for your time today.