“We don’t just build it; we use it.”
These are the bold words of Lead Docket Co-Founder and CTO Eric Coffman shared as we began the demo of the platform. He and partner Dino Colombo created software to manage and monetize the flow of business into Colombo Law, a personal injury law firm. After the firm experienced a 30% increase in retained clients two years in a row, they began working with Harlan Schillinger to fully develop their system into a product that other firms could use. The software was then named Lead Docket and released to the public with a welcome reception and rapid growth.
The exciting part is that I didn’t find out about Lead Docket from an advertisement or marketing email. It was brought to my attention by multiple Personal Injury attorneys, including my own! This is a rare occasion in the legal technology space – to have law firms promoting your platform raving about the interface and its impact on their business.
Specifically, as Eric explained, most firms experience a 10-30% increase in retains without any increase in marketing spend during the first year of using Lead Docket. This is an impactful metric for their client base who are dominantly Personal Injury and Mass Tort firms running paid ads. As the COO of Colombo Law, Eric knows the business and financial pressures of proper tracking first hand.
Success in Simplicity
Lead Docket’s interface is uncluttered and easy to use. From the moment you log in, it is clear what the platform is intended for – lead management and follow-up.
When your law firm is paying for advertising from various sources, excessive CRM functionality can work against you. One of the apparent differences Lead Docket displays is that the system was built to drive action by specific users. Namely, the front of the house staff; receptionists, secretaries, intake personnel and the attorneys who vet and assign new cases.
Working a New Lead – The Intake Dashboard
From the time an employee sits down in the morning, Lead Docket’s layout and user experience gracefully walks them through the tasks of their day.
The system is organized to see upcoming appointments and leads that need to be worked by using automated tasks and messages to make the processes as efficient as possible. Complete with thoughtful nuances added to lead details such as appointment information, contact information and more. This eliminates the step of checking a calendar to see which attorney they are meeting with that day.
Leads include a unique identifier of “Wanted” which signifies that the lead has been reviewed and the firm is interested in retaining this client. Additional statuses include Signed Up, Referred, Assigned and my personal favorite “Chase.”
Because, as my mentor once told me… Time kills deals.
To that point, every action in Lead Docket shaves time off processes. Here are some examples, to name a few:
- Address verification when creating a lead speeds up data entry and improves accuracy.
- Phone numbers are verified for use with SMS / Text messaging features
- Sending documents for an electronic signature via Email or Text
- Alerts of duplicates before a lead can be saved resolves cluttered or impartial database issues
- Language options automatically switch outbound messages to Spanish
Beyond Tracking – True to Source Marketing Reports
Marketing is about data and moving the money where successful conversions are most likely. The level of detail in the identification of where a lead came from demonstrates the first-hand knowledge the Lead Docket team poured into the application. Not only do you identify the source of the lead, but the vehicle by which it was originated. For example, someone who contacted you via Web Chat, may have heard about you from a TV ad and someone who saw your Billboard, may have filled out a web form to contact you.
- TV Ad → Web Chat
- Billboard → Web Form
Thanks to the many integrations Lead Docket has with your various lead sources, Lead Docket ensures that these lead sources are tracked as accurately and easily as possible. It doesn’t matter if your law firm’s marketing spend is a few thousand or a few hundred thousand dollars per month, details like this make all the difference.
Assessing the Value of Case
Customizable intake forms give your intake staff the ability to quickly qualify and categorize a case with fields specific to each practice area. Once complete, the attorneys can choose to take on the client or refer them out.
In the event of a referral, Lead Docket’s features include a complete tracking system. Referral partners can receive an email with the complete lead details your staff collected. Your referral partner can “Accept or Decline” the lead directly from the email. Follow up emails and tasks ensure that all leads that have been referred out are automatically tracked. The system is practically chasing down your referral fees for you!
New leads from external sources such as web chat and website forms appear as into their own section of the Intake Dashboard as “Opportunities” that can be placed into a lead status to kick off a defined workflow. Never again will you need to copy and paste lead details from your email.
Tasks and Automation
Managers that have had to enforce the use of a CRM will say that the hardest part is getting employees to log their activity regularly. Lead Docket makes these processes painless with tasks assigned to initiate processes that keep the team focused on working the funnel.
- After an unsuccessful attempt at contacting a potential client, Lead Docket will prompt you to make another call attempt after a few hours.
- Scheduled appointments are emails are sent as calendar invites to get them on the attorney’s calendar.
- After sending a lead documents for electronic signature, Lead Docket will prompt to follow up if the documents have not been signed.
Messaging Tools Multiply Success Rates
Any successful business person knows that it is our responsibility to pursue potential clients. In today’s world, this means communicating with them more frequently and though the vehicle they use most: text messaging. This is common practice with car dealerships, dentist offices, and even barber shops.
Not only can you send and receive text messages through Lead Docket, but picture messages can also be exchanged and saved in their case file. This is a HUGE time saver for Personal Injury Firms!
For routine situations such as scheduled appointments and chasing a potential client, the messages can be sent automatically saving your staff time and ensures this step isn’t overlooked.
Document Automation and eSignature
Fee agreements, letters and other documents can all be automated in Lead Docket. Seamless eSignature is possible thanks to an integration with DocuSign that sends out the documents and automatically notifies you when they are completed.
Reporting – Data to Drive Profitable Decisions
Create reports on conversion by marketing source or any other KPI imaginable. As I shared at the beginning of the review, Lead Docket’s design speaks to the needs of a law practice. Custom reports are easy to set up and reflect real-time results of campaigns, geographic location, case conversion rates, cost of acquisition and more.
Case Management Software Integrations
After a client retains the firm, the traditional process of casework begins. Easily transition a client’s information and data from Lead Docket into the Case Management program of your choice. Current integrations include:
- And more via a connection through Zapier
- Integrations with other case management systems that have either an API or a case import tool are possible upon request
When I mentioned Lead Docket to my own personal injury attorney, I was delighted to hear he too was using the system as I hired him because of his tech-enabled practice. As a legal consumer, there is nothing more frustrating than working with a law firm who doesn’t seem to have it together. It creates uncertainty, doubt and the potential for client attrition.
Law firms who use Lead Docket recognize the value of systems, processes, and automation. They are focused on growing their firm by making educated decisions based on data. Follow through on new leads is not an optional activity or one that can be managed using outdated excel spreadsheets.
If you are serious about growing your practice, spending marketing dollars on advertising or pay per lead services, you don’t have the luxury of laziness. Every action must be tracked, so why not make that process as easy as possible for everyone involved.
Finally, the team’s ability to train and onboard its law firm users is superior to that of a traditional software company as they have the day to day experience working within a law firm themselves.