How to Replace a Lost Client

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How a Lawyer Replaces a Lost ClientLosing a client is never fun but it happens to everyone.

One of the most important things you can do when you lose a client is immediately bounce back and take aggressive action to replace him.  Here are three things you can do to get past the loss of a client relationship.

Call all your current clients and offer to add value to your relationship. Deepening your relationship with existing clients is a smart move.  These folks have already given you their trust.  They’ve hired you to work with them.  You probably have an intimate familiarity with their situation.  Give them a call and offer to help them with another aspect of their business/life.

This offer should be a way for you to add additional value or improve the client’s situation.  You should charge your normal fee and not seem desperate.  You are calling your client as one of his trusted advisors and you have valuable advice to share with him.

Call your current clients and ask for a referral.  All of us forget to ask our clients for referrals.  Here is a script you can tailor for your own use:

“Joe, I know you are well connected in the community.  Aren’t you on the board of XYZ charity? Who are some of your fellow board members?  What does Mr. Jones (board member) do for a living? 
You know, I really appreciate our relationship. Since my firm does not advertise, we rely on referrals to grow our practice.  I’m wondering if you have a few minutes to think about people you know who may be a good fit for my services.

Who do you know who (here you add the qualities of an ideal client) regularly uses complex agreements or contracts in their business?”

Most clients want to help but they can’t come up with a name right away.  That’s why it is important to warm them up by getting them to think about the people they know in a specific business context (the question about the board of directors).

Call past clients and ask them for a referral.  Your past clients have probably forgotten about you.  Call them up. Ask how they are doing and explore ways you can help them.  If they do not have any new work for you, go through your referral script with them.

This approach may seem forward.  It may not be comfortable for you at first.  In fact, you may view this as “selling” or as “self-promotion”.  It is all of those things.  But it is also necessary if you ever plan to grow your law firm.

It takes a confident person to use these techniques. You need to find it within yourself to aggressively bounce back from the adversity of a lost client relationship.  I have a specific tool that can help you.

It is a video I recorded on this very topic.