By Legal Futures’ Associates Select Legal Systems
It’s hard to believe texting has been around for almost three decades. As in many ways it still feels like a fairly modern technology. However, the first ever text message was sent on 3-12-92 (when Neil Papworth of Sema Group wished Richard Jarvis of Vodafone a “Merry Christmas”.) This means for some of your clients, it’s safe to say, that text messaging has been available their entire life.
Today 5 billion people around the world have the means to send and receive SMS text messages, and it’s plain to see that many people are glued to their phones pretty much all day every day, as they multi-task juggling their normal day-to-day activities. In fact according to up-to-date statistics, worldwide we send an gargantuan 23 billion text messages each and every single day.
People not only exchange text messages with friends, family and colleagues, of course they also use texting to communicate with their doctors’ surgeries, banks and mini cabs – in fact the list is endless. So why shouldn’t they receive text messages from their solicitors?
Many law firms are doing this, and have been for a while. There is no doubt that most clients expect it. If firms don’t respond to this kind of trend, it’s highly likely their clients will drift off elsewhere. People want to communicate with their service providers by text because it’s quick and easy. Research shows that SMS text messages achieve a phenomenal 98% open rate, and 90% of text messages received are read within 3 minutes.
The technology has been around a long, long time, and there is no reason why a law firm shouldn’t consider it as a viable, low-cost means of client communication. Whilst it is an absolute ‘no brainer’ for many law firms, some busy firms are simply getting left behind. It’s not that they don’t see the benefit, they probably don’t realise how quick, easy and secure it can be to set up with a good practice management software supplier.
Those firms that are not yet texting, seriously need to consider it – and quick! Not doing so could give clients the impression the firm is antiquated, and they may not hang around for long.
A high percentage of the law firms using LAWFUSION have SMS Text Messaging set up from the case management modules. They buy text credits and call them off as messages are sent, topping up as and when needed. They can send text messages to clients, direct from their LAWFUSION case file and save their sent messages to the case. When replies come back, they are received as an email notification, which gives the fee earner control in terms of which responses from clients need to be saved to the relevant case file.
Law firms who use texting tell us that their clients often prefer to text rather than call. Their working clients especially find this far more convenient. Texting is a great way to reach unresponsive clients, and it also saves fee earner time as it can be quick, to-the-point and even automated via good case management software systems such as LAWFUSION.
For further information about providing your fee earners SMS text messaging direct to your clients phones from the LAWFUSION desktop, please contact Select Legal Systems on 01482 567601, during office hours, or indeed for information on any other aspect of the popular LAWFUSION legal practice management software for law firms. There is also an online book-a-demo form for LAWFUSION available here.