Marketing fee stability

On a listserv recently, a lawyer requested comments about his proposed letter to his clients. He wants to "shout from the highest roof" (from an old Doris Day film) to his clients that he plans to maintain his current fee structure, that he will NOT raise his fee rates.  I responded as follows:

If you’re representing larger businesses, my experience suggests that they don’t buy legal services based solely or even primarily on hourly rates. They, like most others, buy based on perceived value, expectations that you can provide solutions to their challenges and personal rapport.

Sending the letter as you’ve framed it brings the focus of your service to price. If you focus on price, you are a commodity ..and any other lawyer can compete with you on price if they choose to do so … However, once you create rapport, show that you can provide solutions and therefore are value oriented for them, you will attain their loyalty. That is the best marketing approach, I think, you can take in the circumstance you describe.

Have you thought of calling your clients … and merely thanking them for their loyalty and continued business …. (with, if you feel so inclined, an “oh by the way, my rates will remain the same in  2008)?  When the time arrives to raise rates, I would offer that you read my article on the subject of when and how to raise your rates.



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