Is Your Law Firm Texting Clients? Here’s Why You Should Be.

Even before smartphones became a part of daily life for most Americans, texting was a convenient and popular mode of communication. Though more and more businesses now text their clients and customers, some law firms still rely solely on phone calls to communicate with clients.

Though not every message is best conveyed via text, text messages can help your team be more efficient and more accommodating of clients who prefer not to get phone calls in most cases.

Let’s explore the benefits of texting versus calling clients and look at when you might consider using each to communicate with them.

When to Text Message Clients

Texting helps you quickly communicate a simple message to your client. It’s also a popular form of communication, particularly among younger people. Many people believe texts are less intrusive than phone calls, which makes them perfect for messages that don’t require an immediate response.

Here are a few reasons why your firm should rely on texting for some of your client communications:

  • Texting a client takes less time.
  • Texting can be more easily automated than calling.
  • Texting is more considerate of your clients’ schedules, as they can read and respond at their own convenience.
  • Quick reminders for important dates (court dates, upcoming appointments, etc.) are more easily conveyed through texts.
  • Texts can be kept and reread for easy reference.

Best Practices for Text Messaging

When texting, it’s important to maintain professionalism and adhere to best practices. Here are some tips:

  • Be Clear and Concise: Text messages should get straight to the point. Avoid overly long sentences, but make sure your message is clear and complete.
  • Mind Your Tone: Err on the side of formality. Use proper grammar and avoid slang, overly casual language, or excessive emojis.
  • Proofread Before Sending: A quick scan for typos can prevent embarrassing errors that undermine your professionalism.
  • Respect Boundaries: Don’t bombard clients with multiple texts in a row. If a matter would require multiple texts, consider a phone call or email.
  • Business Hours Are Best: As a general rule, text clients during normal business hours (9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in their time zone). Try to avoid early mornings, late evenings, or weekends, when your message might be disruptive.

When to Call Clients Instead of Texting Them

Despite all the benefits of texting, it isn’t the perfect medium for all communications. Phone calls provide a more personal touch, and they are far better than texts at conveying more sensitive information.

Here are a few reasons why your firm should rely on phone calls for some of your client communications.

  • Phone calls are a better way to communicate detailed information.
  • Phone calls are a more personal way to deliver news (good or bad).
  • Some clients, particularly older clients, might not use text messaging.
  • Phone calls allow you to convey more nuance with your message.
  • When an issue is time-sensitive, phone calls trump texts.

Cater Your Communication to Each Client’s Preferences

One of the best ways to find out how your clients would prefer receiving communication from your firm is to ask them. Though your firm might have a policy regarding certain types of communication, you can let your clients decide the default form of correspondence they’ll receive from your team.

Understand How to Use Different Forms of Communication

Today’s law firms have several forms of communication available and can decide which type is best for different situations. For example, a meeting reminder can easily be sent via text, while personal, detailed information about a case should always be conveyed through a phone call or in person.

Let backdocket Help You Communicate Better With Clients

At backdocket, we know how important client communication is for law firms. Among many other benefits, our practice management software helps you keep track of when to reach out to clients and what was discussed in your last conversation.

If you’re looking for a system that keeps your team organized and ahead of schedule, contact us today to schedule a free backdocket demonstration.

Originally published August 16, 2021. Updated June 13, 2024.

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