The Top Five Reasons Why Clients Leave -- and How You Can Prevent It

LawMarketing Portal, Jill KohnYour legal work may have been stellar, but unhappiness with cost and billing, lack of response, incompetence, failure to understand client needs and a conflict with a partner or staff will make clients leave, according to Jeffrey Miller and Jill Kohn, Ph.D., marketing consultants at Kohn Communications.  

Lawyers often mistake a lack of complaining from clients as a sign of satisfaction. This may be an overly optimistic conclusion. Research indicates that most clients won’t express feelings of dissatisfaction; they’ll just leave. This is particularly true for consumers of services, who are less likely to complain than those who purchase a tangible product. For every client who does give you an earful, research indicates there are 26 others you won’t be hearing from. Ten of their friends and associates, however, will be told about their unpleasant experience with you and your firm in high-definition detail.

Maybe you have done nothing technically wrong. In fact, the legal work may have been stellar, but for some reason the client is unhappy. This is because it can be difficult for clients to accurately assess what you have done for them. They may not understand the complexity of issues involved with their matters or lack the technical knowledge to effectively evaluate services rendered. The client’s expectations can vary greatly from the attorney’s in nearly every aspect of the relationship, including the amount of time the matter requires, the scope of the issue, and the likely outcome.

Based on interviews with a wide va­riety of law firm clients across the country, there are five complaints clients express most fre­quently -- and there are strategies you can employ to effectively address your client’s top concerns, thereby prevent­ing client loss and enhancing client loyalty.

1. COST AND BILLING. Dissatisfaction with cost and billing can take several different forms, but the following are the most common.

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rack - March 15, 2010 4:19 AM

Lawyers often mistake a lack of complaining from clients as a sign of satisfaction

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