If you’ve ever needed a lawyer you know how stressful it can be going through any legal action. On the other hand, if you’re a lawyer you understand how important the loyalty of your clients is for your firm. More than likely, the way you get your clients now isn’t through mass marketing but mainly through referrals and positive client reviews.
Although it may not be evident because law firms usually judge their company’s success by how many cases they sign, CX is one of the most important aspects of running a successful business – including law and accountancy firms.
Why is loyalty and advocacy so important in CX?
When customers of any business become loyal advocates they advertise your business as the best option for solving a specific problem, to others. Think about iPhone users who swear by their life that Apple’s phones are the best device you can ever use.
When it comes to your clients, if they become loyal the next time their work colleague, friend or relative will be in need of an accountant or legal advice, they will recommend you.
Choosing a lawyer or an accountant can be very difficult. Every client of yours has to put more than faith into a relationship with you. It’s not just a package delivery that they’re waiting for. They must trust that you will help them understand their situation, and be empathetic towards their specific circumstances. This is especially important in legal cases.
In the article ‘Interpersonal Dynamics’, Joshua D. Rosenberg says, “Success in law (as in other fields) correlates significantly more with relationship skills than it does with intelligence, writing ability, or any other known factor”. Many lawyers believe that to be successful you need to focus only on the facts of the case. However, when you incorporate concern about the emotional state of your clients you will be able to grow stronger bonds.
As we teach in our courses, when you have a strong bond with your clients, built on Trust, Personalisation, Meeting Expectations and Fixing Mistakes brilliantly, your clients will become loyal advocates that will promote your business on your behalf.
Loyal clients can spend even 67% more than new clients.
In an accounting firm if you have a client who you provide payroll services for, and you give them an excellent experience throughout the year, more than likely they will ask for more services from your firm.
It’s definitely a chain reaction – for which you should put a deliberately planned strategy in place.
Remember: Clients who recommend your company to their friends and family are a more legitimate source and will plant a seed of trust for your company in them. Clients who come from referrals usually are more trusting from the get-go.
Shifting Client Demands
According to Modern Lawyer Magazine, “the percentage of clients recommending law firms is at an all-time high of 69% (up from 49% in 2020 and 47% in 2019)”. Clients and customers all around the world in every industry are in an increasingly large majority, choosing the brands they work with based on the recommendations of others and their own experiences.
Clients no longer expect just good service and accurate handling of their accords, they are now consciously choosing which organisation to deal with based on their customer experience.
50 years ago, there possibly was just a single lawyer and accountant in the town. But as the world grew, communication abilities expanded and equal opportunities arose, we now live in cities with hundreds of firms competing against each other.
This not only gives rise to the need for differentiation (see below), but also it gives your clients the opportunity they didn’t have before – they can change who they work with like they change their clothes.
As brutal as it sounds – today your clients don’t need you – you need them. This is why keeping a great experience, making them feel listened to and understood and creating a strong bond based on trust are vital for today’s business success.
When it comes to law and accounting firms, differentiating is exceptionally difficult.
- The prices can all be replicated in most cases, the services are almost identical to every law or accounting company.
- Specifically for the law industry, unless you get to deal with a celebrity or other high-profile case you will be dealing with the same type of cases as your competitors.
- Incredibly competitive market – over 1 million accountants and auditors in the US alone.
Differentiation in legal and accountancy firms is so difficult because the practice of both is basically the sale of your expertise – so the only way you could have stood out from the crowd is if you had vastly more knowledge than your competitors.
But today you can utilise the power of Customer Experience – which can never be replicated or reproduced.
The industry that’s left behind
Accountancy and law firms have one big thing in common. They are vastly falling behind CX Strategy design.
According to The Professional Services Customer Journey Report, legal films are failing to get the basics in CX consistently right. “Out of all the professions analysed, the legal sector was found to be performing worst when comparing NPS (Net Promoter Score), with a sobering -54, a sharp decline from its score of -15 in 2019.”
Simple actions like introducing yourself when picking up the phone, having compassion and empathy for your clients and answering queries from all channels in a timely manner can improve your CX dramatically – yet so few legal firms do this.
The truth is that some accountancy and legal firms will implement these changes, hire a CX specialist and improve their customer’s experience in order to become the only lawyer or accountant anyone needs (and wants to work with).
The question is – Will you be the one?
If you would like to learn how to deliver excellent customer experience and keep your clients for years to come and gain more clients without spending thousands on advertising, enrol in our Professional Diploma in CX today.
We are not experts on Law and Accounting so we gathered more resources if you wish to continue reading:
The Heart of Lawyering: Clients, Empathy, and Compassion
The CX Factor
CX – Customer Experience in the Legal Sector
Role of Accounting in Customer Experience
What Is Customer Experience in the Accounting World?