Meeting client expectations has been a recurring theme of mine, and one I have discussed a number of times in the past. (See Continue Reading below for links to several of them.) But, those posts dealt mostly with meeting client “service” expectations. What about the “outcome” or “results” side of a client engagement.

Chuck Newton’s Rides The Third Wave blog has a post about the dangers relating to client expectations that fall into that category.

Happy clients are the ones whose expectations have been met, and more work or referrals from that client group are a direct result of said happy clients. It makes tremendous sense to make sure you have done a great job of communicating with your clients as to what they can expect not only in how their matter and engagement will be handled, but how realistic their expectations are as to the outcome as well.

It isn’t easy to talk about potential negatives when attempting to sell your services to a potential client. But, the more straight forward a lawyer is in explaining what the client should expect, in both how their matter will be handled and the potential options as to outcome, the better the long term reputation of that lawyer will be.

So, make sure that you ask and understand the expectations of your clients in both areas. That is smart marketing.

Managing Client Expectations

Again, Exceed Client Expectations

It Really Is All About Satisfied Clients

  • Right on. “Puffing”, as used in so many other areas of marketing and advertising, does more harm than benefit when it comes to the practice of law. Expectation setting needs to start from the very first encounter with a potential client. Instead of promising the “moon and stars” to win a client’s business, focus on demonstrating the benefits they will receive from your representation. Education-based marketing, as opposed to a sales-based approach, provides lawyers the means to demonstrate the value of their services without the risk of over promising and under delivering.

  • Knowing expectations is great; however, setting expectations is a key ingredient in meeting your client’s expectations. The lawyer should have a better understanding of the likeliness of a case’s resolution. Setting the expectation towards the low end of likely outcomes will result in your client’s satisfaction.