Note: This post first ran in October 2017. While I am away for the holidays, I am re-running some of my posts that are timeless in hopes that those of you who may have missed one of them will benefit. Wishing you a peaceful and prosperous 2019!
Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising for law firms can really pay off for lead generation, but only if you know what you’re doing. 80% of the most expensive Google PPC keywords are related to the legal profession, so you want to be sure you are putting your money into PPC efforts that can yield the best results.
Here are some tips that will help you get the results from PPC advertising you need to generate leads:
Create your niche. The broader your practice area, the more you’ll pay for your PPC advertising. That’s because you’ll be competing for the same keywords with lots of other attorneys in your practice area(s). Narrow your practice area and your geographic region as much as possible. Scope out what your competitors are doing and then do it better.
Strategic geo-targeting. Just because you’re licensed to practice in your state doesn’t mean you should be targeting the entire state for your lead generation efforts. Your clients are probably going to come from a 10-15-mile radius of your office unless your practice is so specialized it calls for a longer trip. If you have multiple locations, you should create different campaigns for each location.
Match search intent. Your ads should be targeted to the searcher’s intent. Basically, there are two different kinds of searchers — those who are in the research phase and have more time to deal with their legal matter, and those who need to hire a lawyer right now for a pressing legal problem. Your ads need to speak to the intent of the person searching and where they are in the buying cycle.
Prioritize calls over clicks. More Google searches are performed on mobile phones than any other device, so you should consider focusing on call-only paid advertising campaigns. Google launched its new call-only campaign earlier this year. Instead of a headline, your ad will feature your phone number that connects a searcher to your intake team. Just be sure you have the capability to have your phones answered 24/7 before opting for call-only campaigns. These campaigns can work great for personal injury firms where someone who’s just been in an accident or is lying in a hospital bed can reach out quickly.
Use video on PPC landing pages. Your PPC landing page — the singularly dedicated web page that you direct your PPC ad traffic to — should feature video to increase the trust factor. Shoot a video of yourself explaining what their first visit to your office will entail or talk about what your firm does, focusing on what differentiates you from other firms. If you can, include testimonials from clients — videos are best, but at the very least, include some written reviews. People doing research online for lawyers are skeptical; video can go a long way to alleviating that skepticism.
Use live chat. Everyone searching for a lawyer believes their problem is unique, even if it’s a problem you deal with all the time with clients. Giving prospects an opportunity to ask a question or talk to someone online helps them feel more comfortable taking the next step. Many people prefer the anonymity of live chat over making a phone call — get them comfortable with interacting with you first, then lead them to the call and the appointment.
Invest in display ads and remarketing. One of the keys to standing out among your competition is to invest in remarketing via ads on Google’s Display Network. Display ads are banners that you see on other sites across the Internet. Have you ever wondered how a website you visited keeps following you around when you’re on other sites? This is remarketing and you don’t need a big budget to do it. Most prospects visit more than one website when researching attorneys, and remarketing gives you a great opportunity to stay top of mind when prospects are doing their homework.
Track results. You will waste a lot of money on doing things that don’t work unless you track everything you are doing. Just because you get a lot of clicks — and remember you are paying for each one! — does not mean those clicks are translating into qualified leads. A/B testing allows you to see what’s working and what’s not. Keep trying new strategies until you hit on the winning formula, then replicate your success.