Consumer Bankruptcy Attorney Business Building Tip Sheet
Featuring timely marketing tools and tips to increase your productivity and profitability

Engage Prospects to Invest in a Solution

By Paula Langguth Ryan; Consumer Bankruptcy marketing consultant

It happens to every bankruptcy attorney from time to time. You know that the person across the table from you would experience an enormous release of stress if they would allow themselves to declare bankruptcy. And the moment comes when you realize that are not going to invest in a solution. They’re not going to seek relief using bankruptcy, even though it is definitely their best option. The time spent on your free initial consultation will not result in a new client.

It’s easy to think the problem is something that’s out of your hands. It’s just where they’re at. They are stubborn, full of pride or afraid. But the truth may be something much simpler and less set in stone than you think. Your potential client may simply believe that the negative ramifications going on in their lives right now are manageable and will be fixed if they just keep moving forward on the track they’re on. It’s an ostrich-ox situation. They’ve got their head buried in the sand, yet they are still plowing forward, hoping to create something different, even though their vision is obscured.

You can see clearly that the track ahead is broken, and that they are headed for certain derailment. But they can’t see it. Why? Because they don’t have clarity about the impact their financial problems have had in the past, are currently having in the present and will have in the future they choose not to declare bankruptcy.

They may be too numb to look at the problem. Or they may be too emotionally attached to an asset they have or the impact their bankruptcy may have on others, or they may be invested in saving face with their family or peers. Without perfect clarity about the extent of the problem, they may allow their emotional attachments to color their judgment. Your job is to engage your potential clients in a way that guides them through the emotional attachments and helps them want to invest in a solution.

  • What was their life like BEFORE this financial situation started? (Not in general terms like “we could pay all our bills on time” but in specific terms – what was their relationship with money? Were they actually on top of things or were they engaged in a cycle that would eventually have spiraled to this point, sooner or later?)
  • How badly do they need or want relief from their current financial situation? (Is there a sense of urgency? Something they’re afraid will be lost, or missed out on, if they do or don’t file bankruptcy now? What is it costing them to NOT file bankruptcy? What would it cost them TO file?)
  • What other options do they have? (While bankruptcy is ALWAYS a last resort, that doesn’t mean they should try every other option first – but they should know what options are available.)
  • What are the pros and cons of those options? (Be careful not to “stack the deck” in favor of bankruptcy – but give them true clarity on their options. Empower them to make a decision FOR bankruptcy from a position of strength, knowing that it is the best solution for helping them eliminate the pain, fear and financial problems they’re experiencing.)

You have the ability to empower potential clients to fully and completely understand the extent of their financial problems and the real impact these financial problems are having on their lives, and will continue to have if not addressed. You’ll know you’ve succeeded when the person across from you tells you they’re ready to file, without you even having to ask.

Peace and prosperity,
Paula Langguth Ryan

PS The psychology of marketing to financially stressed individuals requires great skill. Think of it this way: if you had a brain tumor, would you want a general practitioner to operate on you, or a neurosurgeon? Develop your skills and turn more consultations into paid clients. A strategic marketing consultation with Paula Langguth Ryan can help you determine what major mistakes you may be making when doing initial consultations that result in lost opportunities and client reluctance to commit. Develop new skills to help you transform more free consultations into committed clients.

Call Liz at 800/507-9244 today, to set up a 30 minute strategic planning consultation ($250) with Paula, so you can review and enhance your current approach. Or email