Sasha Berson: Investing in Client Acquisition

In this episode, Steve Fretzin and Sasha Berson discuss:

  • Statistics around lawyers in the United States.
  • The relationship between marketing and company performance.
  • Setting expectations with your marketing team.
  • Why you need to keep up on your advertising and marketing budgets.

Key Takeaways:

  • Being a rainmaker is infinitely more profitable than just being a lawyer.
  • Most marketing companies do not charge enough money to be able to provide solid, consistent results.
  • Always ask for references from your marketing company. If they won’t provide them, walk away.
  • If you hire a high-performing marketing team, you should be getting a 4 to 7 times return on that investment.

“The one thing that most solo and small law firm lawyers don’t know is that you need to be investing 15 to 25% of future revenue into client acquisition.” —  Sasha Berson

Episode References: 

How to Pick the Best Marketing Company Checklist: https://growlawfirm.com/marketing-company-checklist

How to Get More Clients Report: https://growlawfirm.com/law-firm-report

Connect with Sasha Berson:  

Website: https://growlawfirm.com/

Email: [email protected]

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCrBWJr36by51NtPBZJAreyQ

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/grow-law-firm/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/aleksanderberson/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/growlawfirm

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/grow_lawfirm/

Thank you to our Sponsors!

Legalese Marketing: https://legaleasemarketing.com/

Moneypenny: https://www.moneypenny.com/us/

Practice Panther: https://www.practicepanther.com/

Connect with Steve Fretzin:

LinkedIn: Steve Fretzin

Twitter: @stevefretzin

Facebook: Fretzin, Inc.

Website: Fretzin.com

Email: [email protected]

Book: The Ambitious Attorney: Your Guide to Doubling or Even Tripling Your Book of Business and more!

YouTube: Steve Fretzin

Call Steve directly at 847-602-6911

Show notes by Podcastologist Chelsea Taylor-Sturkie

Audio production by Turnkey Podcast Productions. You’re the expert. Your podcast will prove it.

FULL TRANSCRIPT

SPEAKERS

Sasha Berson, Steve Fretzin, MoneyPenny, Narrator, Jordan Ostroff, Practice Panther

 

Sasha Berson  [00:00]

You need to be investing 15 to 25% of future revenue into client acquisition, you basically got this a lot of money, but it’s not.

 

Narrator  [00:15]

You’re listening to be that lawyer, life changing strategies and resources for thrilling a successful law practice. Each episode, your host, author and lawyer, coach, Steve Fretzin, will take a deeper dive helping you grow your law practice in less time with greater results. Now, here’s your host, Steve Fretzin.

 

Steve Fretzin  [00:37]

Hey, everybody, welcome to be that lawyer. How you doing? What’s happening. Great to have you with us today. You know, as you all know, I’m Steve Fretzin, I run a company called Fretzin Inc, where we only do two things. We work with highly ambitious lawyers to help them one side, learn business development, take it to the next level, become a legal business developing assassin, or we take those assassins that are already crushing it on the business development side. And we put them in our peer advisory or mastermind groups and help them you know, hash things out as a team in a confidential environment from around the country, high performing attorneys only ambitious open minded attorneys only. But those are the kinds of things that we’re doing here at Fretzin. And as you know, with this show, it’s all about helping you to be that lawyer, someone who’s confident organized in a skilled Rainmaker. My job is to bring in killer guests, interview them have great conversations, but that’s not going to happen today. Now, I’m just kidding. Of course, it’s gonna happen to you. Are you kidding me? I’ve got Sasha waiting in the wings. How’s it going? Sasha?

 

Sasha Berson  [01:35]

Hey, doing great. It’s amazing to be here, Steve.

 

Steve Fretzin  [01:37]

Yeah, happy to have you. And we’re gonna get into you know, your whole deal in a moment, I want to of course, thank our wonderful sponsors, we’ve got money Penny, working every single day to help you with your receptionist tasks of Virtual Receptionist, also, live chat on your website, we’ve got practice Panther, the top practice management software out there that helps you to resolve all your efficiency issues and get on top of things. And of course, legalese marketing is helping you with your marketing, social media newsletter, just about anything, you need that to make your life better and, and get that marketing, grill off your back. And really just enjoy being a lawyer. So we’ve got some great sponsors. And Sasha, so kind of you to be here. Welcome to the show. Let’s jump in with your quote of the show, which is what gets measured gets managed that Peter Drucker, right? That is correct. So why, first of all, thanks for being here. It’s good to see again, and why did you submit that quote? Because it’s really, I think, something that my audience hears me say on occasion, but, but what but obviously, it’s a big part of your world.

 

Sasha Berson  [02:39]

Yeah, because when you think about it, in business, any business, the language of numbers, is the love language. Right? This is we do and we live and we die by numbers in business. Vast majority of small business owners in this solo applies to vast majority of lawyers, principles of their life law firms, do not track the things that matter so much. If you were track them, your business would grow, you would be more profitable. But the truth is that most people don’t pay. And I think the reason for that is, vast majority of small business owners, obviously, including all lawyers, were just about the lawyers might have a business background. And they don’t like math.

 

Steve Fretzin  [03:23]

I don’t think lawyers are necessarily big manless. They’ve got a CPA background. They’re really not big math people. They’re creative people, their solution people. And I know that that you know, sometimes math solutions go hand in hand. But I don’t know that may be a stereotype about about the math. But I we’re not really talking about math, I think so much as we are just just numbers and trying to understand the numbers and how they help us better understand our business or marketing and how we’re really doing.

 

Sasha Berson  [03:50]

Yeah, so we can think about it this way. I think the overwhelming majority of lawyers are not numbers, people, but they understand some numbers incredibly well. Here are some numbers. Median income for an attorney in United States in the year 2020. From BLS was $122,000 a year. In some areas in the country, that’s a lot of money. You and I will live in Chicago and North Shore. That is not a lot of money. Now, it’s not going to cut it. It’s not going to cut it. All right. So then we’ll look at lawyers who make a lot of money. Those were solos, I’ve read some research and I cannot find it now. That the most as a solo, you’re going to make more as a practicing attorney. You’re going to make about $450,000 a year. You’re doing phenomenally well. If you can do that. Then you’ll look at rainmakers. A Rainmaker can make four or five, six times more than that, because they’re not loitering around. They’re bringing in business in part, thanks to what you do, right you train them how to generate more business. And being a rainmaker is infinitely more profitable than being a lawyer. And then you look at those ads denounced lawyers are truly not lawyers anymore. They’re CEOs of their law firms. Those guys make millions because the numbers really work in their favor. I would much rather if I was a lawyer, not be a lawyer, but have done what lawyers working for me pay them 50% of their billable pocket the other 50% to pay overhead, and at the end of the year, keep 20 25% If each one of them bills out 400 $500,000 per year. That’s a really good year. And you do not have to be a lawyer. So be that lawyer.

 

Steve Fretzin  [05:32]

Yeah, that’s it. Be that lawyer. So yeah, and there’s a lot of lawyers that I think are interested in getting out of the full time lawyering billable hour space and getting more into the, you know, the action of the business of law, or the business development of law. And, you know, you said, you know, you know, this is my sport, it’s also your sport. Sascha, Burson, you’re the chief growth officer at grow law firm, and you’re your marketing, Maven, you’re all about helping law firms to get their marketing up and specifically get business from their website and, and gain that traction. So give a little bit, you know, give a little background on yourself, because I think you’ve got to, you’ve got a unique background, and also not a lawyer like myself, but fell into the law from space, maybe in a similar fashion.

 

Sasha Berson  [06:17]

Yeah, so I am an intrapreneur. Through and through, I started my first business I was 13. Back in Soviet Union, came to us when I was 15, found the land of opportunity, had no opportunity for a 15 year old will barely spoke English. This is 29 years ago, I started my first brick and mortar business here in Chicago in 2000. grew it to a well over $10 million sold mistaken to my brilliant partner at the time. IT consulting for small business owners, because I knew how to build a business at the time. So help quite a few of them. lectured train with score and other organizations had plenty of clients. And I got burned out by the consulting gig over four years, went to work for one of my clients, as a president, decided not to acquire equity in that company. And all throughout these years. In early on, when I was building my first business back in 2000 2001 234, I learned that my fortune, my personal fortune and the fortune of my company, were directly tied to performance of our marketing team. I went through so many marketing companies, and they all sucked horrendous, like they were really good at taking the money. Not really good at delivering results. I fired every single one of them. And I don’t remember how many I’ve had because it’s almost 20 years ago, they just were all incredibly bad back then, that planted the seed that one day, I want to go into marketing business and do it right. So we do not actually screw customers over and just keep taking the retainer on monthly basis for as long as they would pay us. And this opportunity arose in 2017 When one of the cofounders of this wonderful company reached out to me, and we had a paid speaking engagement. So we’re here in Chicago, he was like, listen, wouldn’t you be happier doing this, and I’m like doing what, and he’s like running a marketing company that actually deliver solid performance. So that was interested in a few months later, we closed on the deal. And I acquired a third of this company. And it’s been a wild ride in the process. The company, the head company, started out as a generalist back in 2008, and serve all types of industries, and quickly realized that if we do not be worth and start focusing on one sector, one industry will never reach excellence. And this is how the decision was made, because they already were serving a lot of lawyers, but it was not lawyers exclusively. Right. So we made the pivot and build this brand grow law firm, and it’s going great. We’re really love working with lawyers. We love educating lawyers filling in the gaps, because wonderful people, incredibly smart people. I mean, you got to be incredibly smart to go through law school.

 

Steve Fretzin  [08:55]

Yeah, and then to not only you know, to pass the bar and then to actually be a functioning, you know, working happy attorney. Very challenging. Do you have a be that lawyer tipping point moment in your career, that things really turn around for the better where things maybe weren’t going the way you’d have planned and did something different change something up and got it on the right track?

 

Sasha Berson  [09:17]

Yeah, I think it was reading the quote, but I think Dan s Kennedy, great guy still around Dan Kennedy. Sure. Yeah, marketing guru like no one else. I think he was the one who said, for massive results, you got to take massive action. And not I heard it from him the first time. I’m not sure if that’s his quote. And it took me a while to really get the through my head that to get to the goal, which we’re nowhere near that my goal is to get this firm to $100 million dollars in annual revenue. And I know we can do that, because there are competitors in this space who did it. But they’ve done it slightly differently. I want to make sure that we do things right. So we’re focused on the things that are hard in marketing We deliver solid results. So the moment was really when when we adopted this approach and said, Yes, we’re going to take massive action. Yes, we are going to have omnipresence, we’re going to do so much that none of our competitors can catch up to us. And we’re well on track to do to accomplish exactly that.

 

Steve Fretzin  [10:22]

I have a feeling we’re gonna get there in a few minutes. I do want to take a step back, though, and talk about why lawyers are so miserable in dealing with marketing agencies. And you mentioned all the marketing agencies you dealt with and all the miserable experiences you had. And I feel like lawyers and I can say this, too. In my career, I’ve been doing this for 18 years, I’ve had multiple websites, multiple agencies and everything, there’s been a few that were amazing, and were terrific. And there was mostly ones that underwhelmed me and didn’t come through on. I mean, I had one where I paid $30,000. And the whole point was to get me conversions, right? People coming to the website, then filling out a form. And I said to the guy after $30,000, what’s wrong with my website? He looked at me and he said, Well, it’s not going to get your conversions. I go, well, well, that was the first thing I said to you. And I’ve been hitting you over the head with it for, you know, the two years it took for him to develop that or whatever was some ridiculous amount of time. Anyway, that’s my problems. But what are what are you seeing? Like, why did lawyers just have such trouble with dealing with marketing agencies?

 

Sasha Berson  [11:24]

Yeah, so in my experience, and I’m guesstimating, that 90 to 95% of this industry really sucks at delivering performance. Here are the two reasons that I think are like absolutely prevalent reasons why most marketing companies are so bad. The number one reason I believe, is that they do not charge enough money to deliver solid results. Let me explain. So for a marketing company that’s based in United States, every hour of labor that we deliver, has to bring in about $150. So if you sign up with a marketing company that charges you $1,500 a month, you just bought yourself 10 hours of labor. But wait, there is more. Out of those 10 hours, they’re going to spend one to two hours on reporting every month, in one to two hours on communications with you every month. So it is possible that you just bought yourself six to eight hours of labor. Now, what’s the problem with that? Digital marketing is incredibly laborious. You need to have people with expertise, who have the time resource to give you your account, your company, your law firm, in order for you to have better results. So imagine this scenario, where you’re hiring a marketing company and your direct competitor hires another marketing company, we’ll call it ours. You hired company A and they charge you 1500 bucks a month, can you compare hires Company B, us and they pay us $4,500 More, out of the 30 hours that they bought from us, we’re still going to spend one to two hours on reporting and one to two hours on communications, that leaves them with 26 to 28 hours of labor per month, and you get between six and eight. If you give me three to six months, we will crush it just crushing right in your competitor because your competitor is going to get so much further ahead than you do. That’s the simple truth. There is one more caveat that we have two production offices based in Eastern Europe. Because of that, we sell 30 hours, but we can deliver at 90 100 100 120 without going broke because we can hire one full time or in Chicago or eight full timers there. They’re expert experts, by the way who speak fluent English, and can communicate directly with our clients. Because of that most of our clients see outrageous results within the year one, and whatever they pay us is always free. And those who spend 1500 bucks a month is incredibly expensive. The other side of this coin, is that aside from pain, not enough to get solid results. Often we hire people who do not know what they’re doing. It is easy to present yourself as a marketing company that knows what they’re doing. But the truth of the matter is, he asked them technical questions about SEO, bring me into an interview. And I’ll ask them some technical question about SEO. And they will reveal the truth. A lot of them just pretend that they know what they’re doing. Now.

 

Steve Fretzin  [14:27]

So it sounds like a combination of a couple of things, poor results because you’re looking for the deal. And and then and therefore when you’re looking for the deal. You’ll pay a lower price, therefore the level of service and the level of actual quality goes down. And then the other part of it is people that present themselves as and this happens across the board, whether it’s lawyers, whether it’s marketing people, coaches, everybody’s an expert, it’s up to you as the consumer to figure out who really is and who really isn’t. So, a great lead into how do Lawyers select and identify the real deal versus the baker in an agency that is going to represent them that they’re going to spend 1020 3040 $50,000 Within a year,

 

Sasha Berson  [15:13]

what’s the process they should go through? You know, a couple of things. Number one, always ask for references, regardless of whether you’re going to call on them or not. Anyone who hesitates to provide you with references, Keep walking. Keep looking for somebody else. Number two, before you hire them, ask them to deliver a plan how they’re going to take you from point A to point B point a being. Here’s where we are today. Let’s call it $800,000. In gross revenue in 2023, we’re recording this on October of 2022, in 2023, are going to go from 800,000 to 1.2 million. How are you going to help me I’m pretending to be a lawyer client. To go from point A to point B, there has to be a detailed plan that explains how they’re going to know plan, keep looking, no references, keep looking. If you see that the fees that they’re charging, you are a little too good to be true. Keep looking. All of those things. This is a mission critical decision, right? You hired the right high performance marketing team, they’re going to be free. They’re going to return seven to 10 times what you’re paying them. Probably within the first year, depending on the starting point. You’re just starting out. That’s not going to happen. It’s going to take longer, but if you have been around and your workflow has been around for some time, you will be seeing a solid return on investment in year one. You heard someone subpar the opportunity cost, the cost of not getting those clients is going to be astronomical.

 

MoneyPenny  [16:42]

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Practice Panther  [17:14]

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Steve Fretzin  [17:22]

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Jordan Ostroff  [17:51]

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Steve Fretzin  [18:12]

The one that I would add to that in this might be in the references piece. But anytime you can get a personal referral so so someone that has used you or has used me can talk about that experience and what it was for them. And then someone can make, it’s like I’ll tell you, I’m hearing from someone about a great restaurant and the North Shore. They’re talking about they have a great pour the you know, the the ribeye is fantastic. The sides are great, everything’s great. The service is amazing. I’m like, I want to eat there. Right? Like I’m sold, you got me, where do I sign? How do I get it. And I feel like with with with vendors in the legal and the coaching business development space and other areas, it just makes a big difference if you can get a personal referral. I mean, that’s that’s that’s like icing on the cake off of the two things you mentioned, which I think are incredibly important. Especially getting that getting that getting some idea of what their plan is, that’s really bright. Because, you know, they’ll just, they’ll just talk the talk and take your money and then you don’t know what the plan is, and they’re not going to tell you and they’re not going to communicate and you’re wondering where your money went. And when this is going to turn around. And next thing you know, it’s, you know, expectations were never set or met.

 

Sasha Berson  [19:19]

Here’s how to set expectations and this is the one that they should have mentioned as well. And that is he asked them wherever you’re interviewing for the position of being your marketing team asked them to see reports. What is it that they focus on, when they present when they will be presenting you with your monthly performance reports? Here’s what you should be looking for in order to judge their performance. The only two metrics that are really important everything else is nothing. vanity metrics. The two metrics are number one, the number of marketing qualified leads, and marketing qualified lead He is a prospective client who is calling your firm or sending you a request via Contact Us form and says, I have this problem, can you help me solve it, and they’re located within your geographical market. So if you’re in Chicago, and you’re licensed in the state of Illinois, if somebody reaches out here from state of New York and says, I need help with this, you know, practice law there, you can send a referral to your body. But that’s not an MQL for you, not a marketing qualified lead. So that’s metric number one. Okay, metric number two, the average cost per lead. So MTL, and CPL cost per lead. Those are the two really relevant metrics when measuring performance of marketing company. If I was hiring a marketing company, this would be the only two things I would look at. And I would want to see them on monthly basis. And more importantly, on quarterly basis, and the reason why it’s more important quarterly basis, there will be natural fluctuations from month to month, but over quarters time, they will smooth out and you will see are we going in the right direction, are we getting more leads quarter over quarter, same amount, or it’s declining? If it’s declining? What are you Why Why are you paying the money? If you’re standing still, why are you paying the money? Unless they reached the top? You’re ranking incredibly well on page one for all types of searches? And you just topped out at the market? That’s it?

 

Steve Fretzin  [21:19]

I mean, would it make sense? Okay, your cost per lead? And the number of market qualified leads? Is that something you can ask for, like some form of either a case study or to see the actual, like, if they’ve worked with an austere an estate planner, and they’ve worked with an estate planning firm, or they currently are maybe in a different area? To ask, Hey, can you show me the metrics of where you started? And where you were like, is that a legit question to ask to get them to? Yeah,

 

Sasha Berson  [21:47]

incredible, legit question to ask, here’s, here’s how we would perform. When somebody would ask us that question. We would pull up a couple of reports, we would obviously like blackout, Blackout, the name? Sure. Right. And then we’ll show them. Here’s the report, in addition to this report, my team keeps a spreadsheet for every single month, they’re taking screenshots of all the leads that we have delivered. So it’s concrete, the information that we submit is concrete, verifiable, and timely. We show this to our clients every single month, because to my team, transparency and accountability is incredibly important. Because our number one goal, for the first year we’re working for a client is for them to be so ecstatic that the years and that they will automatically renew the contract without being like, I’m just not sure if this guy’s are really. Yeah,

 

Steve Fretzin  [22:36]

yeah, in your in your business. It’s all about retaining the monthly client, the client that you know, you have a year contract, and then whatever you need them to stay. How do you get them to stay? Well, I mean, the best way is get them results, you know, if they’re seeing the leads coming, they’re not going to want to turn off that spigot.

 

Sasha Berson  [22:54]

No. I mean, there are some strange people. There’s always strange people, you have a vast majority, like very reasonable people, they’re looking for that. So they’re looking for two components. Happiness is made up of strong results, in great customer service, because of that every month when our account managers deliver. And I do not mean this to be like a commercial from a company. But if you were talking to a prospective marketing company, there are some questions that you would ask like, how do you deliver your reports? Do you just email it to me? Or do you actually present it if they just email it to you? Right, you want somebody to walk you through it. And second thing, at the end of every performance review that our account managers deliver, they ask you five questions that have to do with your satisfaction, like on a scale of one to 10? How would you rate my team’s performance this past month? On a scale of one to 10? How would you read my performance account managers performance? How would you read this, this and that five questions, which top management of the company myself included? How we’re performing? Not through the metrics, but through the eyes of our actual clients? Every month? Yeah, but I think

 

Steve Fretzin  [23:58]

one of the I mean, this, if you’re a listener, you know, to while you’re listening to this conversation, right? Now, obviously, you should be writing down these questions. If you’ve got a web agency, marketing agency, anyone that you’re working with, that isn’t a, you know, giving you those reports, walking you through them, showing you the growth, talking about, you know, here’s where you are, here’s where you’re going to be, or here’s what we’re going to try to get you to and, and then showing you how that, you know, it’s improving. You know, these are all things that are that should be warning signs that maybe the agency isn’t isn’t the real deal, or isn’t really going to live up to those expectations or lack of X expectations that were set. It’s a fair

 

Sasha Berson  [24:35]

point. And I want to add one more thing to it. Most people, most business owners operate their business through inertia, like we’re doing okay, so we’re going to keep on doing the same thing as we’ve always done. Our most recent loyal client who signed up with us very recently. He has been with the same marketing company for seven years. And I’m like, countin I’m looking at the report. They’re horrible. He’s like, I think that we’re doing a really good job when we just started out, and it’s been seven years. Now you gotta come, you

 

Steve Fretzin  [25:07]

gotta keep seeing results, if it’s just a roller coaster ride, or it started off hot and heavy, and then it starts to drift away. Yeah, really? Yeah. And that’s the sad thing is that, you know, when we as the is the buyers have to step in, and start getting aggressive or start getting angry or start getting, you know, just just starting to question, you know, the people we’re spending, you know, where are the customers, we should be treated a certain way. And when we have to step up and start having these tough conversations, like I mentioned with that web guy I had earlier with the conversions, and that was a really hard conversation for me. And it was hard for me not to get angry, because, you know, he had failed on every sort of angle,

 

Sasha Berson  [25:44]

you know, but the other institution that could be institution there, so So our new client, he built a relationship with his marketing company account manager. So for him, it was very, very uncomfortable firing that company. I think what happens a lot, and this is so applicable to small businesses, we become friends with our employees, we become friends with our vendors, the good ones are okay, once, it’s really hard to work off someone when you build that relationship. However, I strongly encourage people to treat their employees to treat their team to treat their strategic vendors, like a marketing company, as if they were playing professional sports. Guess what, like if one of your key people is not performing, they’re dragging down the entire team. They might have been great last season, but this year, they’re just underperforming, you already had a few conversations with them. Do not drag it on for six years. Don’t drag it out for six months, because you’re sacrificing your family’s well being financial well being because you’re uncomfortable firing someone? Because that’s what it is. Right? You have the same shady pardon my French marketing company, like work for you for five years, because I’m comfortable to fire them. Well, he probably missed out on like a million dollars in revenue on an annual basis over five years. That’s five mil. Was that relationship worth it? Probably not.

 

Steve Fretzin  [27:13]

Right? Right. So we have to treat maybe treat the marketing agency like an employee. And if they’re underperforming, talk to them about it and get that flop. And if that can’t be fixed, then 100% You’re out of luck, you got to start finding a new player.

 

Sasha Berson  [27:27]

Imagine that you’re a top coach like Bill Belichick. Like, patriots used to be amazing, but they really suck than the last game against bears. But they used to be amazing, right? If Tom Brady at any point would have started slacking off. And Bill would have had numerous conversations with him. And then he would have fucking Yeah. Right, because you gotta win. Yeah.

 

Steve Fretzin  [27:47]

And let me let me kind of wrap up this conversation with with a big and important question is, how do lawyers then measure ROI from their agency? If they’re spending, let’s just put it in a number, like you mentioned earlier, like 4500 a month? Okay. Most attorneys would hear that and they would be like, Holy mackerel, that’s a lot of money. Now, some that are paying, you know, five times that are not going to bad nine, because they’re there, you know, that’s where their, their, their bread is buttered. But most most small solos and small firms at 4500, they’re gonna they’re gonna freak out. So what should they be looking for as a return on investment from their agency? How do they figure

 

Sasha Berson  [28:24]

that out? Yeah, so think about it this way. For everything that you put in, in year one, your return should be at least four times of what you’ve put in. The one thing that most solo and small law firm lawyers don’t know is that you need to be investing 15 to 25% of future revenue into client acquisition, you may say, Oh, my God, this is a lot of money. But it’s not this is what your competitors, those who have things figured out are investing. Let me give you an example. So Morgan, and Morgan Vale largest personal injury law firm in the country, probably the world bill in the US and Robin, fill in. They’re so well known, you would think they don’t need to put any money into marketing and advertising, wanting 22 budget 160,000,016%. But they don’t really need to, but they know that once they stop advertising and marketing, their competition will be taken that piece of the pie. And every year that piece of the pie would get smaller and smaller for them and bigger and bigger for their competitors. Their second, the second largest spender in that space, is Lerner and Rowe. I was sitting at a table with Glenn Lerner a month ago at the conference. And he was like, Yeah, you know, last year we dropped $37 million on advertising and there was like one lawyer who was asked like, like, Would you be okay, spending 30 grand a month on marketing and advertising. He was like, I can’t and they’re like, why not? He’s like, I’d have to let go of 90% of my staff. That’s just too little. Now. For those who are soulless, who may be very uncomfortable with that spend the $4,500 a month. If when you hire a high performance marketing company, who knows what they’re doing They have to be experts at this. Your return on investment year one should be four to seven times of what you’ve put in. How do you measure that? You look at the leads that are coming in, and you figure what will be your close ratio on those leads. Most decent lawyers or decent on the phone will convert and one out of four people they talk to unless they wait. And they’re like the last lawyer with a prospect speaks to you have to be like first or second lawyer that they speak to otherwise, your probability of getting the businesses incredibly long, super, super frustrating for marketing companies, because we could be delivering the contract leads, and then they get like five clients and how did that happen? And they’re like, I don’t know. Like, are you fast the filtering phone? I usually call them the next day or the day after. I’m like, Oh, God, they already hired someone else better.

 

Steve Fretzin  [30:45]

So that by the way, just let me interrupt and just say that’s where you need mani pedi. You need that live, you know, receptionist answering the phones treating people properly starting to get that that onboarding process going, so shout out to mani pedi anyway.

 

Sasha Berson  [31:02]

All of these all of these services, it seems like they cost money. The truth is that they’re absolutely free. Let me explain. So I don’t know what money pains charges. But let’s say on average 500 bucks a month. Let’s just say 500 bucks a month? Sure. What does one missed phone call costs? Let’s imagine that your average case value is five grand. Let’s imagine that you close one out of four conversations one or four prospects. So every lead is 1/4 of $5,000. Because you close one out of four, right? So if you miss one lead, you don’t respond to them right away, or you respond to them a couple days later, that’s 1200 50 bucks out of your pocket. You miss four of those. That’s it five grand out of your pocket. So $500 a month, on Moneypenny. It’s free? Yeah.

 

Steve Fretzin  [31:50]

It’s yeah, it’s all part of it’s all part of a system that you have to have in place of the marketing, the business development. All right, that generates the leads. Now the leads come in, you’ve got to have that onboarding or not that maybe it’s not onboarding, what’s the other term for it? intake, the intake, right, you have to have the intake done properly, that then gets them you know, to the lawyer, it gets them to into now we’re into sales Free selling what what I teach, which is, how do we walk a buyer through a buying decision to decide that we’re the right fit. So not selling, but rather walking them through that decision to make sure that they’re qualified, we’re qualified, it’s a good fit, all these things work together. But when you miss one of those steps, the lead generation, the intake, the right sales process, or sales, free process, whatever, that’s all losing you money, or capturing, return on investment on those on what you’re doing?

 

Sasha Berson  [32:42]

Well, let’s let’s picture it like this. This is your money making engine, everything that’s marketing, advertising, and sales, is your money, make an engine, imagine an agent in a car, any of the components are not doing their job, that car’s not going to run or it’s not going to run? Well. When you look at most small law firms. That engine is partially apart with many components missing. So when you’re thinking like, wow, I thought that there would be much further along like 10 years after practicing law, it’s because your money making engine is broken, it’s missing some parts. So you connect with experts like Steve, and they will give you this awesome fuel injection system, you get a high performance marketing company, they’ll build out build out a really nice crankcase like every component. They’re all meant to work together. And if you have all of the components working together, it’s going to sound like a beat. Well, Ferrari, it’s going to run amazing. But then until you have all of that working together and fine tune together, life is going to be okay or difficult because like, again, if you live in Chicago, especially in North Shore, Chicago, and you make a median income of 122, and you’re concerned about spending money on making more money. Life’s hard. But What app

 

Steve Fretzin  [34:03]

do I find that that is Trent challenging for people to make the investment in their practice investment in themselves. So either for me for business development, or you for marketing, they don’t necessarily, you know, they’d rather stick that money in the market, which is great. It’s a great was a great idea, not so much the last year. But you know, putting it back in your business is kind of a no brainer. The problem is, they have to go through what you mentioned earlier, which is a really thorough vetting process of talking to references. Like I actually let my client my prospective clients, like audit a class, like they actually sit for one of my classes, to see if it’s for them if they leave the class and they go, you know, I didn’t learn nothing. I knew that already. This wasn’t for me. Great. I’m glad you did that. Because if I’m going to sit here with you, every week, you know, helping to teach you things you already know. Now, I know that’s not the case before I invite them but you know, if it’s even just not you know, it’s just not for them. Okay, then then let’s let’s not move forward. That’s great. We just saved each other. A lot of you know, heartache. So, Sasha, I want to, I want to wrap up with, with in, by the way, everything you said on this interview was spot on. And I think incredibly valuable to my audience who is trying to consider hiring a marketing agency or evaluating their current marketing agency. And you’re giving them a lot of great questions and insights and thoughts. And I’m not getting four times ROI, or seven times ROI where I was. And now I’m not like, this is all stuff they should be thinking about. So I just want to tell you how much I appreciate you and our friendship and you coming on the show and kind of sharing your wisdom really good stuff. Thanks, Steve. Really appreciate it. Okay. And your game changing book is the Ultimate Sales Machine, which right off the bat just scares every lawyer in the in that’s listening right now. But the Ultimate Sales Machine, tell me about that book. Yeah, so

 

Sasha Berson  [35:49]

that book was published back in 2009, or 10, written by the late, great, Chet Holmes, an amazing guy who worked for other amazing people like Warren Buffett, who was just an incredible business development guy, she knew how to take a sales team, or a professional or anybody who needed to get more business. And he just led the way and showed them how to make a ton of money. That was, that is my favorite business book. It’s written very simply, anyone without business background would understand all of the concepts incredibly, incredibly well written. And in it, he teaches people or do not have a business background. A lot of business acumen, how to become a better thinker. How to approach things, better. It here’s the thing, the vast majority of lawyers, incredibly smart people, very low business acumen. Because by training, there’s none of that.

 

Steve Fretzin  [36:52]

Yeah, there’s there’s no training. Yeah, it’s not taught, it’s not taught. So

 

Sasha Berson  [36:55]

which is like really, really strange. Because think about like most lawyers, the way we measure their success, they can’t say I’m the best lawyer in the field. Right? That would be against the rules. So the way that success has manifested this usually financially, but they’re not taught how to do well, financially, they’re taught how to be good lawyers.

 

Steve Fretzin  [37:15]

Right? Well, that’s why they need guys like us. Otherwise, if they weren’t good in business, they wouldn’t need us, right. They’d be doing their own marketing their own business development without, you know, having a bad day.

 

Sasha Berson  [37:25]

But I’m not sure about doing your own marketing, just because like, I can’t do my own marketing, I can create content for doing my own marketing. So like every client of ours gets a team of five to eight people working on their business every month. It’s this is it’s a team sport today. It’s not an individual sport, right, a team sport?

 

Steve Fretzin  [37:45]

Well, let me ask since you since you mentioned, if people want to get in touch with you to learn more about grow law firm, and your company, what what are the best ways for them to reach out,

 

Sasha Berson  [37:54]

they can connect with me directly. I’m happy to hear from any of your listeners, it’s Sasha SHA at grow law firm.com. And by the way, one of the resources, you can just ask me for the resource. We have a checklist, how to pick the best marketing team, for your law firm. We also have a guide, How to get more clients, for your law firm, you can just ask for those resources, if you don’t want to talk and just just want to get some valuable information. Super, super useful, super useful. Yeah.

 

Steve Fretzin  [38:23]

Are those are those actually in link form? Where you could send me those links? I put them in the show notes. They are somewhere on my website or somewhere on your website? Maybe okay, maybe maybe send me the like the link to the page where they found that I’ll put that in the shownotes for everybody send me

 

Sasha Berson  [38:37]

the links here. We have a humongous humongous blog on our website are probably well over hundreds, hundreds and hundreds of blog articles. Okay, yeah, yeah, we’re cranking out a lot of useful

 

Steve Fretzin  [38:49]

you gotta you gotta you gotta you can’t be the cobbler with the kids with no shoes, right? If you’re the marketing, you know, that’s another sign of a bad marketing. Their website sucks. Or when their marketing is non existent. You look at their LinkedIn and the last time they posted was, you know, five years ago? Well, that’s not you know, that’s not a great marketing company if they’re not staying active with their own marketing, right?

 

Sasha Berson  [39:09]

Oh, I can I can show you how we propelled like our website in just the last six months, the rise of organic search traffic is just stratospheric. Because the team really knows what they’re doing in we are we do practice what we preach. We put in we invest a lot of resources into this. Like we never say okay, well we’ll do it 10 hours a month doesn’t work.

 

Steve Fretzin  [39:30]

Sasha thank you so much, man. Again, I appreciate it. And I’m looking forward to you know, hearing some feedback from the audience on this interview and if they you know, the kind of value they got that I think you know, that I know I I’ve been listening. I’ve got my usual page of notes. So just thank you so much, man. Appreciate it. Thanks. It was an honor to be here. Awesome. And hey everybody, thank you for spending time with Sasha and I today helping you to continue that journey of being that lawyer someone who’s confident organized in a skilled Rainmaker. Take care everybody Be safe, be well, we’ll talk again soon.

 

Narrator  [40:04]

Thanks for listening to be that lawyer, life changing strategies and resources for growing a successful law practice. Visit Steve’s website fretzin.com For additional information and to stay up to date on the latest legal business development and marketing trends. For more information and important links about today’s episode, check out today’s show notes