warm recption area buttonI have given many free marketing tips for law firms, but just about every idea I have mentioned requires ongoing effort from the law firm’s side. These simple marketing tips, require no ongoing effort, no money and will make a vast improvement to your professional image.

Most of these tips are “no-brainers” and common sense, but while people are heads-down and focused on their day to day work, they forget about the simple things that make an impression on clients and prospects, especially when coming into your law firm offices.

First Impressions
It is natural for people to judge on the first impression – we know people do it, yet we let our office presentation slip and so too the first impression the prospects and clients get when walking through our door.cleanliness law firm reception
As this is about doing the marketing without spending money, you don’t have to change your law firm’s signage or replace the front doors, do things that are simple and possible to do now, without costing money.

Cleanliness
Clean the reception carpet, clean the reception sofa, scrub the tiles, make sure the windows are always clean and scrub door handles. Cleanliness says that your law firm pays attention to the small details.

Attention to detail
Broken chairs, blinds, light bulbs out, squeaky doors or broken signs – fix everything in the reception area. Everything should work as intended, as I said earlier, if not it sends the message that your firm sloppy and does not pay any attention to detail.

Magazines on display in law firm receptionMagazines
Make sure you have the latest issues of the magazines, and keep the previous 2 back issues. Nobody wants to read a “You” magazine from 12 months ago. Rather have no magazines than ancient issues. And make sure they are relevant to the people reading the magazines.

Newspaper
Today’s neatly folded newspaper is a nice touch, but it needs to be kept neat and tidy, being properly folded after each read.

Reception PC
We know that the person at reception may not be the main bread winner in the firm, but we do know that the PC sitting in the reception gets way more eyeball views than any other PC in the office. Take the new flat screen with matching keyboard and mouse from admin and give it to the receptionist. The actual PC itself can stay where it is. The illusion of an up to date computer will send the message that says you are a technologically advanced law firm using technology wherever possible to improve customer service.

TV screens
If you have to have a television in reception, flat screen and DSTV set on the news channel – No SABC 1-3 and ETV.
It is also a good idea to display simple marketing text messages on the TV, like estate planning notes and messages.

Busy receptions
If your firm has a busy reception with many people waiting at any given moment, have the receptionist instant message the paralegal coming to meet them as to what they look like, or the seat they are in – nothing makes people feel like cattle than being called out of a full waiting area. If they know who they are, the paralegal can go straight up to them and ask them to follow them to the meeting room addressing them by their surnames.coffee station in reception

Coffee
This takes a little bit of effort from the receptionist and the office catering staff, but there is nothing more welcoming than the fresh aroma of brewing coffee and a good cup to follow while waiting.

Headsets
If your telephonist and receptionist are the same person, make sure to get your receptionist a good telephone headset, so that they can still use their hands and deal quickly with people and phone calls.

Rate our service
Have rate cards in reception, so that people can tell you about your service – how on earth will you fix poor service if you don’t know what it is. Not a cell phone app – a piece of paper and their contact details are optional, so they are not scared to leave the honest truth.

Ask a question
Have a card that allows people to ask a legal question, without having to have a consultation but only available to people visiting your reception. People will get a caring feeling and your law firm will have a potential lead for business to help solve the client’s problems. These could also be great content food for your Blog.

Ghosts
Have a friend come to your office and ask for you – keep them in reception for 5 minutes and see what they can tell you about their experience.

Jack up your reception and allow the first impression marketing to start working for you. The best marketing is word of mouth, and what better way to get clients to talk about your firm than by treating them really well while waiting for your attention.

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