47% of law firms fall short on making a positive first impression, research reveals

The Law Firm Marketing Club’s “What Clients Want Research 2023” report, sponsored by Moneypenny, reveals that nearly half (47%) of law firms fail to make a good first impression, suggesting a significant area for improvement.

The study surveyed over 600 potential clients of legal services in the UK. A noticeable generational gap is also highlighted, with younger clients under 30 significantly favouring digital interactions, with 59% forming a positive first impression through social media. In contrast, only 12% of over-60s share this sentiment.

In addition, sustainability has emerged as a key factor, with 39% of clients considering a law firm’s approach to this issue as important. This finding underscores the need for law firms to prioritise Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) efforts and communicate them effectively to clients.

The study further emphasises the importance of clear, transparent communication for client satisfaction; 87% of clients value a clearly displayed phone number, and 86% prioritise a detailed description of services when choosing a lawyer or law firm. Direct contact details of lawyers, same-day responses to queries, and regular updates are among the key expectations of clients.

According to author Clare Fanner, Founder of the Law Firm Marketing Club, the research indicates that law firms should have a cross-selling or client care strategy in place, underlining the need for regular and consistent communication with clients about the range of services offered.

“This research isn’t about uprooting established systems, but about adapting and learning. It’s about empowering law firms to align themselves with clients’ evolving needs, leading to business growth and increased revenue.”

The changing landscape poses a challenge for law firms: Are you prepared to adapt your communication approach to connect with the under-30 demographic?” asks Sophia Stancer, Community Manager of the Law Firm Marketing Club. “The stats say that the first interaction with a law firm is make-or-break. A major factor is the disconnect in preferred communication channels, especially for us under-30s.”

The research was sponsored by Moneypenny, the UK’s leading outsourced communications provider for the legal sector.

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