11 Just Res. 1 (2006)

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Intake Should Be Your
Primary Marketing Strategy
By Forrest (Woody) Mosten
Ten marketing experts may have eleven
opinions as to the best marketing and
advertising options. Yellow pages,
website, direct mail, one-on-one meetings
are all valuable tools, among many. The
marketing and advertising options to open
up client flow are only limited by your own
creativity and budget.
However, your single most effective
marketing strategy to build a mediation
practice is to provide quality service to
your existing clients. Satisfied clients refer
others. Ranked a close second is for you
to convert telephone calls from potential
clients into paying cases.
In marketing parlance, the caller is your
highest targeted prospect. Whether it is
your past quality service to others, brilliant
advertising, or a crisis, telephone callers
are aware that they have a current demand
for your services and have made a
tentative decision to select you as the
service brand of choice (at least for the
duration of the phone call!). Your best
marketing strategy is to be prepared before
the phone rings, to have planned your
intake model to maximize your conversion
rate of phone calls to clients.
Four general mediation telephone intake
models are described below. Review them
to either identify the workable model that

you now have in place or to'D~fop yogr
own new personal intake model.
1. Short Intake - Mediator Talks Directly
with Potential Clients
Short means 1-10 minutes. Maximum. The
purpose of the call is to personally answer
basic questions the caller has with the goal
of following up with a mediation marketing
packet or referring the caller to your
website. Your challenge will be to stay on
the process of mediation rather than delve
into the facts or personal concerns of the
caller (this takes practice). You can provide
information about your qualifications,
your style, your fees, and your availability.
You must balance keeping it short, staying
neutral and still establishing rapport - a
tough challenge!
2. Short Intake - Mediation Assistant
Talks Directly with Potential Client
Everything about this model is the same as
the prior intake model except that another
staff member takes the call. Most callers will
be willing to speak with your assistant since
that is the procedure you have set up, just
like we accept the nurse who takes our blood
pressure or temperature at a doctor's office.
If the caller insists on speaking with you or
another mediator, you need to have an
established office policy about whether you
will get on the phone or have your assistant
explain that, in order to preserve your
neutrality, you do not talk to either party
until both parties come to your office for the
free orientation session.

Continued on Page 3

January 2006

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