Ten Part Legal Marketing Series

Part 5: Personal Injury Claims: Caseload Management

Overturned motorcycle after collisionThe cost of living–after an accident

The Staten Island Advance reports that lawyer John O’Leary recently negotiated a $750,000 settlement for his client, mid-trial, for injuries she suffered when a car struck her as she crossed a street. Helena Rozanska, 62, a housekeeper at a convent at the time of the accident, injured her arm so badly that she was unable to return to work or perform her own household chores, such as cooking, cleaning and shopping. Mr. O’Leary was able to bring evidence from an economist that the cost to Ms.Rozanska of hiring others to perform her own household tasks would be $369,000, quite apart from her inability to earn further income as the convent housekeeper. The story credits the trial judge with being instrumental in helping the parties reach settlement.

I would call that a good result for the client. Missing from the story were: (a) how Ms. Rozanska found Mr. O’Leary, and (b) how Mr. O’Leary plans to find his next client.

The cost of not having a steady stream of new clients

  • What is it worth to you to have a steady stream of potential clients reaching out to you?
  • What caseload do you need, ideally, to justify your investments in office space, staff, insurance, utilities, equipment and technology?
  • If you settle 5 to 8 cases this month, will you be wondering where the next clients will come from?
  • What do you have to do to reach out to new clients?

You may be able to answer those questions relatively easily, but fear that the cost involved in increasing your client lead volume is too high. That’s where OLM can help.

Online marketing

Online advertising is outstripping TV advertising in effectiveness, partly because it can provide accurate and immediate feedback as to CPL (cost per lead) and CPA (cost per action, such as filling in a form). OLM offers you an economical marketing strategy that can be customized to your needs. It offers any lawyer the chance to advertise in the online newsmagazine, LawyersandSettlements.com (LAS), to be listed in the LAS lawyer directory, and to receive client leads generated by LAS in their area of interest based on their individual budget. OLM can help you set up or improve your own website, and determine your best type of marketing campaign.

OLM lets you support a public service, in providing news of settlements and court actions to the public, while at the same time giving you exposure to the busy LAS site, which has received 2.5 million visitors and counting.

We’ve come a long way, baby. There was a time, not too long ago, when it was considered unseemly and unworthy for lawyers to advertise. Most Canadian and U.S. jurisdictions had professional conduct codes which prohibited soliciting and advertising along with the shady practices of champerty and maintenance. Lawyers got used to marketing themselves indirectly, for instance, by currying friends in useful places, by networking like crazy, by getting their name in the paper and by running for public office.

Now, we can–and must–be more direct in marketing our services. By the way, if you don’t remember from law school what constituted champerty and maintenance, you might want to come back to the future and run a Google search.

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