The stereotype attached to millennials, especially held by those of us in the preceding generations, is that they are terrible at in-person communications, lost in their social media and digital worlds, and oblivious to what is going on in front of their unlined faces. It seems that every industry is trying to figure out how to market to this new demographic, how to catch their attention and earn their loyalty.
One strain of thought is that businesses, including law firms, need to create a frictionless client experience. The belief is that millennials who are used to calling up all they need—from diapers to a new sofa—through an app on their phone, who settle up with friends through Venmo or Square Cash, and who make all their appointments by text, will not seek services from professionals who do not make interactions easy and smooth. But it is possible that this is exactly the wrong road to go down.
Research shows that millennials value personal conversations more than Generation Xers and baby boomers, and that they value person-to-person interaction over digital options. It may be that all of their digital interaction leaves them craving personal contact. And that a personal relationship with their lawyer and the lawyer’s staff, built with face-to-face interactions, is what might earn their business and loyalty in the future. So, by all means, look into letting clients pay through PayPal or cash apps, but perhaps put focus on excellent customer service that incorporates personal touches. Make these young clients feel like individuals.