Tips on Effectively Engaging with Clients Remotely

Why the Remote Process is Now Preferred for Legal Intake and Attorney-Client Engagement

The COVID pandemic has shown how remote engagement with clients and paperless transactions are safer. Pre-pandemic, online services companies were pushing for these processes for clients all over the world. How effective this push was is open to argument, but the pandemic emerged and effectively rendered these transactions the current preferences and saner alternatives.

The best argument for doing business online and without paper is this: these probably go towards helping save resources, cleaning up the environment, conserve energy, lower carbon footprints and ultimately help save the planet that we know. These, being cheaper and virtually limitless, will also help everyone do business online. In a world that is overloaded with billions of people, online resources seem to have come at the right time. The pandemic only highlighted the fact.

For lawyers and their legal marketing, there is now a wider gap between those who prefer more traditional means of marketing their legal services and those who have gone online and found it to be the best way to market their services.

For traditionalists, the legal world and the justice system still rely on a lot of paper, and a lot of referrals still go through non-internet legal networks. If, however, they still are in business, their practices are probably on the verge of folding up if they have not, at the very least, invested in some essential internet resources. For instance, since physical meet-ups are harder to set up and consume more time, they might open a Zoom account for online meetings.

Lawyers, of course often think of themselves as being more open to changes. Many have aggressively gone online. This will not mean that they have the best kinds of resources on the world wide web – and they might wonder, at times, whether the move online was a good decision. This often means that they are still tied down by traditional means of rendering services to clients and do not actually understand or know how online transactions work.

At LegalMatch, keeping the leads coming for its attorney members is a must, especially now that many of them fear a downturn. Where this might be seen as simply a means of surviving the pandemic, the LegalMatch vision has always been to help lawyers shift their focus to online legal marketing.

Aside from its robust attorney-client matching (ACM) service, LegalMatch easily supports the shift from the physical desk to the virtual office. In this sense, it is the future for any practicing lawyer. With the pandemic, many LegalMatch attorney members are discovering new aspects of the platform that eliminates most if not all physical transactions.

To make the most out of the Attorney Member Program on the LegalMatch platform, lawyers need to reset and refocus. They need to commit to remote engagement as the primary process in a law practice, from intakes and even to litigation. Furthermore, they need to learn how to use remote transactions that do away with paper documents and bills.

How to Leverage and Enhance Your Legal Practice with Remote Engagement

LegalMatch studies remote engagement to make it the most effective business experience for its attorney members. A steady stream of facts and figures in the use of the platform as well as the intake process and client engagement of program members were analyzed. These were used to create the following tips to enhance the practice of law through remote means:

  1. Call and Follow-Up

    Physical location is no longer a problem with the internet. Even when clients are far away from your office, reaching out and following up with computer gadgets (PCs, laptops, smartphones, tablets) is getting easier every day. More and more people are getting used to working remotely online.

  2. Use the LegalMatch Attorney Mobile App

    Download the LegalMatch Attorney Mobile App (iOS or Android) so you can read and reply to new cases anytime from anywhere. This eliminates the need for running a large office as well, and expands your means to communicate faster with anyone.

  3. Provide Initial Consultations Remotely

    Get into action with the current engagement trend by setting the pace with remote consultations. The tech is only going to get better in time and clients always consider whether attorneys are up to date in this regard. Following is a short list of tools and apps you can use for remote video meetings and/or teleconferencing:

    1. RingCentral Video — offers a broad range of dashboard features standard for the video conferencing and online calls. You can integrate it with Microsoft 365, Google Workspace, and Slack, among others. The functionalities get better as you upgrade if you choose to do so.
    2. Zoom Meetings — currently the rage among a variety of users, from business to personal/family meet ups. It’s scalable, meaning you can easily start with 10 people in a meeting and end up with a thousand without too many problems with the complete features. One disadvantage here is that it does not offer integration with certain items like e-documents.
    3. GoToMeeting — extremely mobile-friendly video calls that starts at $12 a month. It’s a standalone app, so you don’t need to use other apps to start video meets. It also has all-in features in terms of what you might expect of the best apps. However, this is not recommended for your business VoIP.
    4. Microsoft Teams — this is part of the full Microsoft Office suite that gives all you may want in remote office communications. Microsoft tech has nowhere to go but up, and its video features in Teams are arguably the best in the business.
    5. Google Meet — Google upgraded its Hangout chat and video function in Gmail and came up with this. It enjoys full integration with the host of features you find in Google’s G Suite. While it is a serious tool for business, Google might still be in the process of improving the system to compete with leading brands.
  4. Accept Online Payments

    Many clients might use credit cards, and offering online payment solutions makes engagement easier and more efficient. If you use a credit card or online banking, the current Automated Clearing House (ACH) process for online payment apps is now safer and more secure. Here are some of the best apps to use here:

    1. PayPal — is in wide use all over the world and does not require set up and monthly fees. PayPal gets a small fraction from your account with each transaction. Navigation and use take some getting used to.
    2. Authorize.Net — has a user base of 300,000 merchants using it as payment gateway. This supports payment through a variety of e-commerce platforms, too. Setup fee is at $99.
    3. Google Checkout — this is potentially the biggest draw for business using G Suite. Google takes out a %2.9 + fee per transaction for sales below $3,000.
    4. Amazon Payments — services a host of online merchants on the leading shopping platform. Fees, billing and processing have a lot of add-ons and side processes.
  5. Go Digital & Paperless

    You will need to have online list tools, filing/storage platforms, scanning apps, file-syncing, document delivery processes, and e-signature tools to make it all work. Here are samples of the most useful tools for these needs so you can get organized in the online paperless world:

    1. A list-of-to-do-things service like Asana — make full use of filing, editing, and sharing resources on this platform and move to your virtual office in one go. You need to make the use of this tool a habit, as well as master its many features and functions.
    2. A filing/storage platform like GoogleDrive — probably the best scalable platform on the cloud for e-document storage. The files are heavier than other competitors and might lack some features, and you need to upgrade for business use.
    3. A scanning app like AdobeScan — probably the best phone scanning app that turns paper docs into online documents. You need to send your files via email, file them in a storage platform and delete the docs on your phone afterwards to use this efficiently.
    4. An e-signature tool like DocuSign — lawyering requires the signing of many documents for attorneys and their clients. DocuSign is one of the best solutions here. Use digital documents and signatures for your legal contracts. Surprisingly, there is a lot of competition in this field, and you should do some research before using one service.
    5. File syncing and document sharing/delivery — along with filing/storage, file syncing and document sharing can be done with one tool or platform. In fact, it works best if you only use one to store, sync, and share your files. If you use GoogleDrive for filing and storage, you should use it to sync and share or deliver files across all devices. Other great alternatives here are Dropbox Business, Microsoft OneDrive for Business, Software Reviews, and Box (for Business).
  6. Use the Cloud

    Here is the limitless space for online transactions and storing files. With the cloud, there is no need to have those bulky cabinets in an office. The cloud enables you to share documents securely as well as interact with clients and team members right on the electronic document page without meeting in-person.

  7. Technology & Online Services

    Trust your LegalMatch Key Account Manager to provide you with the best list of services, tools, or platforms for online services that are geared for your legal practice.

  8. Leverage Your Time

    With all your internet and digital resources, you can make better use of your time. Delegation is easier through file sharing and email attachments. You can therefore make the most out of the extra time to improve your practice in terms of core tasks in lawyering and courthouse processes.

The choice to go totally or partially remote and paperless is yours to make. All the resources are there for you to access with little to zero trouble. For LegalMatch Member Attorneys, you can always discuss these options with your Key Account Manager.