My name is Mike Melis, and I've got on the line with me, Megan from Conversations Digital. Megan, tell us a little bit about yourself and about your organization.
I'm Megan Hargroder. I'm the founder of Conversations Digital, and we've been building websites and marketing campaigns for solo and small attorneys for about a decade now. So we are very focused on story based marketing, we do a lot of what we call the convincing part of the sales process for our clients. And so I'm really excited about this and our new dream team with Kenect for the convince and convert magic that we're going to tell everyone about today.
So just for those of you who are on the webinar today, who may be unfamiliar, just a couple quick details about Kenect, who we are, what we do, and then we'll jump right into today's topic. So we are a text messaging platform that's built specifically for law firms. Our goal is to really help the firms that we work with, do the things that you see there, communicate more efficiently, generate new leads, conduct video consultations directly from a website and drive online reviews. And lastly, for those of you who collect payments, we can actually do text to pay as well. We have a brand new integration with LawPay that will actually collect payments really simply via a text message as well.
And then we're tightly integrated with lots of the players in the industry. So many of the case management systems, the more prevalent case management systems we're integrated with. As I mentioned, we've got a really new, interesting integration with LawPay, but we have lots of clients across the industry using Kenect and we're a big part of the industry.
We really do five core things at Kenect. Some firms that we talk to as they start out on the journey of wanting to start communicating with their clients via a text message.
I just actually jumped off another webinar where we just were specifically talking through how firms can really use online reviews to help with engagement and with conversion as well.
And then just a couple quick thoughts on text messaging and we'll jump right into Megan's topic today. But text messaging, really, if you're not thinking about it for your firm, it really is very impactful. Pew Research did a survey and they found that 89% of your clients would prefer to interact with you via text message. It's a really timely form of communication. 98% of text messages are opened and 95% are read within three minutes. So it's a great, quick, easy way to communicate with your clients that's not disruptive, weaves into their day, into the busy world we live in.
98% of text messages are opened and 95% are read within three minutes
This is that text functionality that I mentioned that we add to our clients' websites. It's really easy, great way for clients to interact with you. It just adds a new way. Today we're talking about convincing and converting. It adds a new way for clients, especially new clients to reach out and engage with you once they get to your website, once you've done the work to get them there. That's different than trying to get them to call that number on the top of your page, or fill out that Contact Us page, which they may or may not be willing to do. And all of this flows into a really nice inbox. You can think about Kenect as your text inbox and you've got really great functionality, whether it's on your desktop or on our mobile app as well. So there's a mobile version of this with all the same tools, so whether you're sitting at your desk or you're on your mobile app, you've got all those really nice, a nice inbox with really simple tools. So that's really kind of who Kenect is, but we really want to jump today into the topic. Megan, we'll turn the time over to you, but we really want to talk through how do you convince and convert? So talk us through that, Megan. Tell us a little bit about that and how that weaves into what you guys do.
Yeah. So I actually, I want to go back to this slide real quick, because I love these stats so much. This is a huge thing. People are becoming more and more mobile only. So you don't have the option of not having a mobile website. You don't have the option of not giving people the option to text message you, unless you want to get left in the dust. And we all know that for lawyers, it's very, very competitive out there. So this is exciting to me because I like to stay on top of not just trends, but things that are here to stay. And this is something that's super duper here to stay. I actually learned about Kenect because one of our clients found them on their own and started implementing this and we got to see there how many more leads they were able to convert with this tool and how many more reviews they were able to get by using this tool.
And that's been huge because especially with Google Business, Google Business reviews are really, really pivotal to your success in search engine results. The more great reviews you have, the more likely you are to pop up. So we're presenting this as sort of a linear process, but it is a full circle process. One of the big things that I always tell people, because everyone's focused on traffic, is that if your website doesn't make people want to contact you, then the traffic means nothing. And, if contacting you is not easy, then convincing them to do so was pointless as well. So we want to focus on doing things the right way, and we're going to talk about how to actually convince people that they want to hire you and then make it easy for them to do so. So if you're a South Park fan, like I am, you may have seen the No Underpants episode where they decide we're going to, phase one is that we're going to collect the underpants.
We don't know what phase two is. And phase three is profit. So phase one is what I consider... I compare this to website traffic. Great, we've got all the website traffic. Phase three profit, what's in between? There's two things in between. One of them is to convince, which is, we're going to talk about all the elements of that. And the other one is to make it easy for them to contact you in a way that feels natural. If you're going to convince someone to contact you, you're really convincing them to trust you. So trust is something that you build through a few different elements, including authority, empathy, vulnerability in some cases, but it's something that you need to do very, very authentically and this is really rooted in the content and the copy on your website. So people trust people.
I know a lot of law firms, a lot of lawyers like to just put a generic image on their homepage of a cityscape or a skyline or the scales of justice. That's a really popular one. But what really resonates with people is, if you have a photo or this is a screenshot of actually a video that's in the background. If you have a photo of you, the attorney, on your website, you are much more likely to get people to stay on that page and hear your message. Once they hear your message, if that's good, they're more likely to contact you. So in this instance, we use the message, "Max, didn't just keep me out of jail. He got the charges dropped." We did this because it was an actual testimonial that this lawyer got and we thought that this testimonial was better than any tagline we could have come up with because it says everything to convince someone who's the ideal client, that this is the lawyer for them. So a big part of this is story, the element of story.
People remember stories. It's very possible that someone is going to pull up your website. They're also going to pull up the website of two of your competitors at the same time, and they're going to do a little comparison shopping. If you all have the exact same, what I call a biography obituary which says, "George Vervuilus went to this college and graduated from this law school on this year and got some, this, that, and..." No one cares. What do people care about? People care about how you have helped your clients, who you are and why you do what you do. So artful storytelling is key here. The attorney biography page is the second most visited page on a website after the homepage, by a long shot. So this is something where, when someone's trying to figure out who you are, they're going to this page.
Side note. If you're using Kenect already, this is something where of course you want this to be on every page of your website and, Mike, correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm pretty sure that, that's how it works. It follows you on every single page of your website?
Cool. At any point during the process of someone checking you out, you want them to be able to contact you and they're much more likely to do that if they've just read a powerful story and then they get to the bottom of the page, they see that "Text Us" button or "Text Me", however you want to customize that, boom. That is powerful. Way more powerful than a Call Now, or a fill out this contact form and we'll get back to you.
One of the elements of story is empathy. You want to always let people know that you really understand what it is that they are going through. You can do this with copy, you can do this visually, but you want to show people that you know what it is that they're looking for, not just generic copy. You also want to build authority with them. There's a lot of ways to do this. You've noticed a lot of people use those authority badges on their homepage and I think those are great. That's a great way to build authority too. But another way to do that is to just really confidently go at someone with facts about the issue that they're facing. For example, this one, the unsettled and truth: 52% of all California employers will face employment-related claims. That's frigging scary, first of all. And it's also like, oh wow, if someone got to this website, that's where they are right now. They're a California employer who, there's a case against them by one of their employees in this case.
So building authority, building empathy, and my favorite element, which a lot of lawyers do not want to go here, but I will tell you now, it is really freaking powerful. And it is vulnerability. This is where you get to be very authentic with someone and build trust with someone you've never even met before. This example is a divorce mediation lawyer. And she went ahead and let the reader take a peek behind the curtain saying, "I was once the woman sitting in my closet, head in my hands, thinking I can not do this anymore. I need off this roller coaster of chaos." She says she was afraid. She embodies everything that her future clients are actually going through. So this is very, very effective. And she's actually, this lawyer had so many people say that they've contacted her because of this story, because you're not just showing them you, you're showing them themselves in your story. That's really important. So recap, empathy, authority, honest and vulnerable storyline. And always, always, always having that clear, how do you work with me? What's the best place to get started? A text message. It's so low impact. It's so easy. It's something that we do all of the time.
Also, I did want to mention that your clients want the best attorney for their problem. Another thing you might want to take a look at on your website is, are you presenting yourself as a jack of all trades? If you are, what is it that you want to niche into and how can you do that? Because if I got a traffic ticket, I'm hiring this guy in the top left. I want this guy, he knows how to keep traffic tickets off my record. Great. I don't want to waste my time running around talking to people to try to figure out if they can solve my problem. I have a problem and I want it solved fast. So one, I want to make sure that whoever I'm contacting, I can see at a glance and at a glance, meaning in this top above the fold section of their website, I can see exactly what it is that they do.
I'm not going to contact Jet Stream about my divorce because they clearly handle business jet transactions. And I want to talk to someone right away and if I can't talk to someone right away because it's the middle of the night or whatever, I want to get a response saying that I've been heard. One of the things I don't think Mike touched on earlier that I think is so cool, and this is so beneficial for small firm clients, is that you can set away messages through Kenect. For after hours, for weekends, if you don't have someone in the office to talk to people, you can craft a message that says, "Hey," the person's first name, because they've typed that in, in their smart form fills. So, "Hey John, thank you so much for reaching out. We look forward to talking to you more about your case. We're out the office right now, but an attorney is going to get with you first thing in the morning." That makes people feel heard. It makes people feel calm and it keeps them from reaching for the phone to call for the next guy who might have a 24 hour call service, even if that 24 hour call service is problematic.
We kind of already hit on this, telling them their story. This is an example of a lawyer sharing his own DWI experience and he specifically does, you probably can guess it from the slide, expungements. Showing someone that you know exactly how they're feeling, super, super important. And of course, including your little nuances, this is an Austin, Texas lawyer who is very Austin, Texas and he says things like, "That's mighty amazing." When you're reading this copy, you can hear the Texas accent. And that is again, it's important because it makes people feel like they know you before they've even contacted you.
So bringing it full circle of really, really making it a personalized experience, because the way that we used to do things with the obituary style biographies, we know that that doesn't work. We know that people do not like to fill out a contact form and wait for you to call them, they want to talk to you immediately. And we know that people connect with people. And so you're going to see, I mean, we're already seeing a huge trend of people wanting to hire these niche solo and small firms rather than some huge firm that is just a logo and a generic name of some kind. So that is all I've got for you right now. I know we could riff on this forever, but we're going to go ahead and open it up to questions.
And while we do that, I'm actually going to show you a little example of what this looks like. This is one of my clients, Pierce & Shows, they're personal injury based in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. They have a really powerful message. We have these Call Now buttons on the site. You probably have these on your site too. The cool thing is being able to see, since they implemented Kenect with this Text Us there, we do not. I mean, this is what people want. People are not clicking on Call Now. Honestly, they weren't doing it that much before. They weren't really filling out the contact form before, but we did notice the site was getting a good amount of traffic. The attorney biography pages were being visited. And then with the implementation of Kenect, you can see I've already played with this quite a few times. We are able to convert a lot more leads and for a small firm, there's two attorneys here, that's huge. It really is huge. So, Mike, I don't know if you have anything that you want to add.
Yeah. On that front, as well, I think a lot of firms in the past have tried as Megan mentioned, the Contact Us form, Clio, one of the case management systems actually does a yearly, state of the industry report and one of the things they've found is that clients don't really believe you're going to follow up on that Contact Us form. And that has been their experience. And most firms don't do a great job at that so they don't have a lot of confidence in that. And some people just aren't willing or ready to pick up the phone. Text is just a much less, it just feels less aggressive almost. And it's a little different, a lot of firms in the past got into and they tried chat services right in the past. And I think one of the challenges they found really quickly was, one, they would have to have someone staff that chat throughout the day, all day because chat demands instant response.
And the other problem for the client is they are stuck in front of that chat session until they get their question answered and they can't leave. They're stuck, whether it's on their phone or they're in front of their computer, they can't go about their day. And there's just a little different cadence with text messaging. They can send you that message and they get an automated message back letting them know, "Hey, thanks. We got your message. We'll get back to you shortly." And they can go about their day and they're now texting with you just as they would friends and family, other organizations. It's a natural cadence for them. And you respond, they respond. They can be at work, they can be in their doctor's appointment. They can be sitting in a board room and they can still answer messages.
But they're not stuck and captive in front of that screen until that conversation is over. And if they have to leave in the middle of it, it's just erased with chat and with text messages, it's natural, it fits into their day. So really helpful. And from a conversion standpoint as well, a lot of the firms that we work with actually will send a really simple intake questionnaire over text, just a simple three or four question intake questionnaire that is really helpful for that, really engaging with those clients and really helping to understand their problem. So it's very helpful for the convincing, convert that we're talking about today, getting them to engage and then engage in a meaningful way.
And your drop off rate. That's the thing about the chat bots that we were noticing before was that with a standard web chat like Apex or whatever, the drop off rate is super high. It was about 50% on average of what we were able to track between people either just bouncing away from the page or getting frustrated because if you have an automated chat bot, then it is not answering the questions the way that they're asking them. You can work really hard on an automation for a chat bot, but it is not a real person. Or the real person is just giving people cookie cutter answers that you've basically programmed for them and so it doesn't feel real to people. They do get frustrated or they have to get up and leave their computer. And that happens a lot or they're older and they accidentally close out the tab and they don't know how to pull up their history and get, maybe they'll never find you again. So the fact that everyone opens their text messages is really, really makes this an ideal situation for converting.
Absolutely. And for everybody on the webinar today, I'm guessing you probably have your mobile device there, right in front of you on your desk or in your pocket. You may even have answered a text message or two while we're on here. But if you even compare as well, the difference between the number of unread emails you have and the number of unread text messages you have, it's usually orders of magnitude. Most folks that I talk to have hundreds, if not thousands of unread emails and you probably have very few unread text messages. So it's a great way to get clients to engage with you up front. But it's also fantastic throughout the life cycle of that client as well. It's a great way to keep that conversation going and get the things you need from them and for them to get answers from you as well.
And you did mention Clio earlier, Mike, so are there pretty easy ways for people to integrate Clio with this so that if they're texting back and forth with someone, for example, it could pipe that data into Clio?
Absolutely. Yeah. So we've got really great integrations with quite a few of the case management systems out there, Clio, File Land, Practice, Panther, Rocket Matter, CasePacer. And so with any of those systems, those messages will flow automatically into the case management system, so it becomes part of the client record. You can even attach it to a specific matter. But with Clio specifically, we're also integrated with Clio Grow, their intake tool. So we're integrated with Clio Manage and Clio Grow. Through the life cycle of that client, as you do all this work that Megan has mentioned to get them to go to your website and engage, that text functionality, Text Us, will flow directly into Clio Grow as a lead and then as you manage that client will ,flow into Clio Manage as a new client that you're working with, a client that you've got an engagement with.
That's so cool. The other thing that my other... This will be my last note, but my favorite thing that I saw whenever I did the Kenect demo was the ability to, so I use text expander, which is a, it's a shortcut tool where you can emails or links that you use a lot, you basically have a short code for it. So the fact that within Kenect, you can actually program canned responses so if there's something that you say a lot to people, a piece of information, or a standard response, you can program that in so you're not typing it out every time. You can just click a button and send it. And I think that's so cool.
Absolutely. Yeah. That's a really important feature that our clients take advantage of every day, because there are certain things that you just say over and over again, and those are helpful. And one question Megan for you is, in your experience out there dealing with lots of firms, what would you say is the one, kind around the topic today, what's one thing that a practice could do today on their own? What could they do to better their engagement with engaging with clients, getting them to go down that path? What's one step that they could do today?
The number one, if you only did one thing, I would say, clarify your message. Because so many people lose traffic because people get to their site and they're confused about what it is that they do. So a powerful message like this one we talked about eradicating claims by opportunistic employees so that California businesses can get back to work. You know that she is awesome and that she represents California businesses who have had a claim brought against them. So rather than saying, California employment lawyer, well, what side of the fence are you on? Are you representing an employee or the business? So clarify exactly what you do. A lot of people are scared to do that, because they're like, I might miss someone or I might turn someone off. Good. Turn off the people you don't actually work with because that's going to waste your time and then you can focus on having those more meaningful conversations with legitimate leads.
Absolutely. Absolutely. Yeah. That's fantastic. And Megan, from your side, if people want a little more information about you and your organization, how do they reach out to you?
Oh yeah. Good question. So our website is conversationsdigital.com and I have a schedule free consultation on my website. By 2022 we will also have a Text Us button here, so you can do that. But for now you can schedule a call with me. You can take a look at our website, we've got a lot of examples of clients and work and all that jazz on there. We build websites so we tried to showcase that by building a cool one for ourselves as well. We're always happy to talk with, we work with solo and small firms so if you have five attorneys or less with a niche practice area, that is what I would consider a good fit for us.
I would just say, we're going into 2022, 2021 is done. So be thinking about ways to future proof your law firm. And one thing that's not going anywhere is mobile, it's bigger than ever and it will eventually become the only thing. So make sure everything you're doing is mobile and make sure your message is clear. And that you're telling a story because you know, stories have been around for thousands of years and they've been effective for thousands of years, so those are the two things I would end on.
Agreed, agreed. And I think 100%, I think the messaging and really narrow growing down to what you do is extremely helpful. And from our side, I think on that same story topic, your clients are capable of leaving stories about you and the experience they had with you in their Google and Facebook reviews. I think the last thing I would say is manage that process. That's a big part of what we do. Actually started out helping firms manage their Google, My Business reviews. That's how people are finding you and oftentimes judging you. So manage those stories as well, would be my kind of parting thought. Put a process in place that once you've engaged and you've done all the work to have a beautiful site from an organization like Megan and people reach out to you, take advantage of that and ask them for reviews. Get your best clients to advocate for you would be my last kind of parting thought as well.
Yes, yes, yes.
So thank you so much, Megan. We appreciate you jumping on with us, always great. Fantastic content. I think that hopefully everyone today's taking something they can implement and put into their practice today. But feel free to reach out to either of us. We'd love to hear from you and thank you everyone on the webinar today for joining. We appreciate you taking time out of your day to be with us. And thank you, Megan.