Do This and be a Referral Magnet

Dear Subscriber & Friend,

How would you like to make such a splash with your referral sources that they wouldn’t ever think of sending cases to any lawyer other than you?

I mean it wouldn’t even be close!  Not only would you be at the top of the referral list… but… you would render every other lawyer virtually INVISIBLE.

Do I have your attention yet? Good.

What I’m referring to is a strategy I call the “Over the Top Thank You.” It’s actually quite a simple concept. All it needs is a little creativity and consistency.

Here’s What It’s All About…

Every single referral you receive should be rewarded with a thank you that’s special. I mean really SPECIAL. And no — I don’t consider a phone call, email or note “special.” Frankly, that’s the absolute minimum you should do.  (If you’re reading this and saying to yourself, yikes — I don’t even do that — then we need to have a little talk about common courtesy. Come on, not even a thank you?)

But it should go much further.

The fact is, if you want to be at the top of the referral “leaderboard,” then you should really go OVER THE TOP in letting the referral source know just how appreciative you are to receive the business.

Why Should You Go “Over the Top”?

For three reasons mainly:

1. It will show that you gave the thank you gift a lot of thought (unlike what most people do)

2. It will make you and your gift unforgettable;

3. It will induce more referrals because the referral source will wonder what your next Over the Top thank you will be.

In What Way Should It Be “Over the Top”?

There are two components to this.

First, it should be a thank you gift that is personal in nature — one which shows you spent a good deal of time trying to find something THEY will like.

Second, it should be an item that is unusual or uncommon.  The more unexpected the gift, the better.

Examples of “Over the Top”

I have seen and been part of many referral gifts in my day.  It’s fun to both give and receive them (especially give them). Like I said above, the ones that had the biggest impact were both personal in nature and unusual.  Here are a few examples that come to mind:

1.  One of my private clients practices in Philadelphia. He received a referral from a Phoenix attorney whom he met only two months prior at an ABA convention.  The case ultimately generated a 6-figure attorney fee.  So, how did my client show his appreciation?  First of all, he cut him a big, fat referral check. Next, he had a professional illustrator create an art piece that depicted the Phoenix lawyer as a courtroom warrior that was extremely flattering to him.  He had it professionally matted and framed. Finally, my client decided to take the check and the art piece and fly across the country to deliver it personally. Can you imagine the reaction? The lawyer was floored (and ultimately gave my client two more referrals)!

2. One of my subscribers is an attorney in Los Angeles. He received a referral from a CPA in Sacramento who also happens to be a huge Sacramento Kings NBA fan. So as an “Over the Top” thank you for the substantial referral, my client had a Kings basketball jersey personalized with the CPA’s name on the back and two court side seats for the next Kings home game wrapped in a gift box. As you probably know, court side seats are not cheap! The result was a very giddy CPA (is that even possible?) who, to this day, talks about the most incredible gift he’s ever gotten.

3. You can (and should) still give an “Over the Top” gift even for referrals on smaller cases. I recently received a referral from an attorney who is, as am I, a vintage toy collector. He referred a new client to me who wanted a phone consultation, for which I charge $3,000.  As a thank you, I was able to locate a Mego action figure (a type of action figure that was quite popular in the 1970s) that I knew he didn’t have but always wanted.  It cost me several hundred dollars but was well worth it because I just found out he potentially has another referral for me.  (Even if the referral is less than $1,000, it warrants an Over the Top, creative thank you.  A $500 referral today could be a $50,000 referral next week. Remember that.)

How Much to Spend?

I can’t give you an exact amount on how much to spend, but of course any gift or referral fee you give should be in compliance with your state bar rules. In general though, the thank you should be in direct correlation with the size of the attorney fee you receive.  The bigger the fee, the more you spend. However, you always want to try to create the WOW factor no matter how much you’re spending.

Can you see how this can result in multiple referrals, and in keeping you “top of mind” with your referral sources?  Believe me, it works like a charm.

That’s it for this week. If you have any ideas or topics you’d like covered, let me know. Until next time, have a happy 4th of July!


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