Aastha runs a traditional law firm and a secondary, 100% virtual law firm. She came up with the idea for a completely virtual practice after realizing that the traditional model was inconvenient for a large portion of her clients and that going virtual would make them happier, leading to more referrals and reviews.
She used design-centered thinking to build out and iterate the process of going virtual. Aastha started small with virtual consultations and built her secondary practice from there. Education is the key with this new type of practice– her clients understand what makes this process and firm different, based on the video on their website homepage.
Process of Design Thinking
- Empathize – explore and find the pain points for your clients. Aastha surveyed clients to see what they would have liked to be different in the process.
- Define – Outline the pain points; Aastha’s client’s pain points were pricing, meeting in person, and where to meet.
- Ideate – Come up with options that you could try.
- Prototype – Implementing the options you can try.
- Test – testing out your model. This is where you start and go back to step 3 or 4 as you try out additional options and ideas.
How Aastha’s Firms Find Clients
- Facebook ads
- Aastha started by wasting money iterating and learning the process but has developed a working process.
- Email list didn’t create interest, website visit and courses didn’t engage, but a short video leading to a webinar created engagement and interest.
- Referrals from all over California
- Referrals from clients in the traditional practice; and their established SEO, Google, Yelp, and online presence.
Setting her firm apart from DIY Services
- Lawyers are hesitant about DIY, Legal Zoom, and other services,
- Aastha doesn’t feel that she is competing with those services but has to educate clients about her process,
- The more lawyers are practicing virtually, the easier her sales and intake process will become,
- The available tools are replacing menial tasks- not lawyers. “Our value [as lawyers] lies in our knowledge, in our ability to emphasize, and our innate ability to adapt because we are human.”
- AI tools will only enhance our practice and our lives.
Cryptocurrency & Estate Planning – a new addition that lawyers in this practice area need to be aware of for their clients.
Their intake process:
- Online form fill leads to a questionnaire. This helps their firm understand what the client needs before they get on the phone.
- The results of the questionnaire either lead to a consultation or emails containing the documents they need, rather than a consultation.
A few other notes:
- Concierge Wills & Trusts use ZenDesk for website chat and find that both potential clients and current clients engage with it.
- The model uses technology to support the law firm and lawyers, and firms should begin to automate what can be automated.
- Aastha on Imposter Syndrome: This comes up as hesitation, nervousness, and a lack of confidence. It takes a lot of work to climb out of the feeling and hearing the stories of others who have felt the same way can help break those feelings down. Validating others good ideas will help bring more good ideas.
Aastha Madaan is the owner and founder of Madaan Law, P.C. (a traditional law firm) and Concierge Wills and Trusts (a virtual law firm). At Madaan Law, she focuses her practice in the areas of business law, franchise law, and estate planning. Aastha is a strong advocate of good planning, in life and in business.
Concierge Wills and Trusts is the first completely virtual estate planning practice in California. Concierge Wills and Trusts incorporates technology for internal systems, automated workflows, and the ability for clients to meet with estate planning attorneys via video. This innovative method allows every person to truly access to attorneys, without leaving their home. Think DoorDash or UberEats for wills and trusts.
Aastha has authored numerous articles and speaks often on topics such as cultural competency in the practice of law, design thinking, starting your own law practice, eco-friendly law practices, and utilizing technology in the small firm practice. She is an advocate for access to legal services and volunteers her time on boards to create better access through legal insurance and innovation. Aastha is a leader within the legal community. She has served in numerous capacities including on and as a board member of the Long Beach Bar Association Barristers, a board member of the California Young Lawyers Association and the District Representative Southern California to the American Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Division. She has also served as President of the Whittier Law School Alumni Association, a board member of Group and Prepaid Legal Services Association, and on the editorial board of ABA’s GP, Solo and Small Firm Magazine.
In addition, Aastha is an avid drinker of almond milk cappuccinos, a wannabe zero-waster, and incessant poster of dog photos.