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Why service has to be at the heart of successful conversions

5th August 2015

With a mixed picture when it comes to conveyancing calls so far in 2015, Bernadette Bennett, Legal Commercial Manager at telephone answering specialist Moneypenny explains why she is urging law firms and property professionals to stay on their toes when it comes to not only capturing new enquiries, but delivering the best service they can to convert those leads into new business.

After a cautious start to the year across the sector, we were pleased, at Moneypenny, to see an 8.35% upturn in conveyancing calls post General Election, suggesting a more confident and settled industry mood. In a similar vein, so far in Q3, call volumes are looking encouraging, not only in terms of call increases to existing clients, but as more and more conveyancers seek telephone answering support.

In separate figures for the year to date, of all the conveyancing calls taken by our legal receptionists, 10.66% have been brand new enquiries. With this in mind and set against a backdrop of property stock still in short supply, it’s a critical time to make sure each and every one of these opportunities is converted, while keeping current clients happy too.

Much has been published and debated around the `missing millions,’ a term used by Professor Ian Cooper to describe how firms are losing out on a remarkable amount of potential new business due to missed telephone calls or poor call handling. Answering the telephone successfully is an often undervalued element of client interaction. Firms not only have to ensure they answer every call, and at times to suit their clients (which these days is increasingly removed from the traditional 9 to 5 pattern), but they also have to handle those calls in the best way to win new contracts and deliver the very best customer experience every time.

Legal and property continue to be our largest sectors at Moneypenny. We answer around half a million calls every quarter for law firms of all sizes, as well as around 300,000 calls for estate and letting agents. With client numbers continuing to rise across both, it’s evident that there is an ever increasing recognition that engaging telephone answering support, which seamlessly integrates with the in-house team, whether it be on an overflow or fully outsourced basis, is a crucial differentiating factor in capturing and converting more effectively.

But there’s more to it than just capturing calls when it comes to standing out and gaining competitive advantage – it’s about how you handle them and completing a rounded picture with exceptional service delivery – something we are passionate about at Moneypenny.

Let me give you an analogy of how simple things make such a difference to the way people experience a business, how they feel about it, and crucially how they perceive it going forward.

A friend of mine moved house recently. In casual conversation I asked her how it had gone and she talked me through the trials and tribulations of sorting out, throwing out and getting out of her previous home. One thing she couldn’t wait to tell me about though was a small package that had arrived at her new home the day after the move. It was from her mortgage provider, Lloyds Bank and contained a bottle of wine, chocolates, a tool kit and some handy picture hooks, all topped with a little good luck message. On the flip side, she was disappointed not to have had `moving in’ contact from her estate agent. The agent had done its job, there were no complaints, but there was nothing in the service provided that my friend couldn’t have found elsewhere – so nothing to talk about. For very little cost in the grand scheme of the £3,600 paid to the agent, what a difference a gesture of some kind would have made to the way she felt about the transaction, which is ultimately what generates word of mouth recommendation and future business.

I am not advocating for one minute that every business should set about giving out gifts and cards, but rather, look at simple ways to add value.  Successful businesses pay attention not only to the straight-forward needs of the client, but to those touches, the extra mile that make their experience that bit better, more impressive, more memorable. With competition so stiff, it’s never been more important to have that edge.

For more information on Moneypenny’s services or to take advantage of a no-obligation trial, please contact: 0333 202 1005.

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