Everyone needs a lawyer at some point in their lives. It seems like it should be easy to find a local and highly recommended firm, right? The reality is that most people will only stumble upon a law firm online from one of two sources: ads or search engine results.
For the law firm that needs better online visibility, that means developing a strategy for law firm PPC (pay-per-click) ads and SEO. This is the case for smaller firms with just one location and even more crucial for full-service firms, especially spread across multiple practices.
When done correctly, PPC campaigns are a powerful strategy to increase the public’s familiarity with your firm. PPC ads can boost your brand awareness by 80%.
However, when SEO and PPC are poorly planned, law firms find it hard to reach the right audience, search results appear far down the page, and it seems like competitors are always easier to find.
What Makes PPC Challenging for Law Firms?
Legal services are essential, so it seems like finding the right firm should be easy. Why is it so hard for full-service law firms to get seen?
Truth be told, lawyer-related keywords are among the most expensive to promote and difficult to rank in search engines. Without a winning marketing strategy, online visibility can be a real challenge. Here are some of the main reasons why.
Paid campaigns center around keywords. Law firms pay some of the highest prices for the most sought-after keywords. Without guidance from a PPC specialist, it’s hard to find a way to target affordable options.
Difficulty Reaching the Right Audience
Every law firm specializing in a unique area of law needs to serve ads that relate only to their niche. Without the right knowledge, it’s easy to waste money reaching too broad a demographic.
Strict Advertising Regulations
This is really important, so we’ve highlighted a few advertising rules you must follow to give you an idea.
Don’t Say You’re an Expert—Unless You Can Prove It
It’s okay to advertise a particular area of law you practice. But, if you want to say you are an expert or specialist, make sure you have the certifications to prove it.
Tell the Whole Truth (and Nothing But…)
Make sure any claims about services or fees are entirely factual. Law firms are held to a high standard that includes not misleading by omission.
This extends to avoiding terms like “the best” and any claim that cannot be precisely quantified. Instead, stick to your credentials. If you’ve been recognized for excellence or won an award, use that to stand out among your peers.
Avoid All Paid Endorsements
The specifics vary state by state, but you generally cannot compensate clients for providing a positive testimonial or recommendation. At the federal level, the FTC actively monitors and penalizes businesses that violate its Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.
The list goes on, but the bottom line is you have to be well-versed in what you’re allowed to say and how you say it.
The Gig Economy
For some industries, the format of short-term contracts and independent freelance talent is a liberating business model. But, when it comes to practicing law, this gig economy drags some unwanted byproducts into the industry.
Law is about prestige: establishing one’s reputation over years and even generations. In many ways, freelance platforms jeopardize and disrupt the valuable institution of long-term client relationships, the confidence of recognized names, and the perennial nature of consistency.
How to Build a Winning Law Firm PPC Strategy [5 Ways]
The ideal strategy for your lawyer PPC campaign takes several factors into account. When we start to develop a plan for your law firm, for instance, our PPC experts at Big Leap consider whether you specialize in a specific niche and whether you have multiple locations. From here, we’ll target the best opportunities your competitors aren’t taking advantage of.
There are four main kinds of paid ads you’ll likely use in your law firm PPC campaigns:
- Ads that appear at the top of search results
- Display ads that use images or videos to attract attention on relevant websites
- Social ads served on popular social media platforms like LinkedIn and Facebook
- Retargeted ads that appear to specific audiences who have responded before
Retargeting is an especially beneficial element to your successful campaign because you are building familiarity and trust over time, continuing to nurture the interest of those who have already looked into your services.
These retargeting ads capture the attention of 75% of consumers, increasing your opportunities to convert the right audience.
Let’s take a close look at the important elements that make up an effective law firm PPC campaign.
1. Choose the Most Relevant Keywords
Because of the high cost of keywords in the legal field, selecting the ideal keywords involves quality research. The perfect phrases embody the same basic characteristics.
We don’t just want to drive a lot of traffic to your ads and get a high click-through rate (CTR). We want to drive visitors most likely to need your specialized law services.
The challenge is researching keywords that define your target audience while also bringing the right value from each click. Being specific with keyword intent helps us uncover unique opportunities that save on the cost per click (CPC) while driving precise traffic to your landing page.
Targeting the right keywords is about striking a balance between recognizable and relevant words and phrases and finding opportunities worth the cost of a click.
2. Craft a Compelling Message
Consistency is key. Your ad’s title and subject need to speak to exactly what your ideal persona is looking for. This means you don’t want to loosely integrate keywords just because you think people will click on them, and you don’t just want to entice users with words misaligned with your landing page messaging.
When a user clicks on your ad, the page you take them to must match their expectations.
3. Leverage Your Landing Page with SEO Optimization
PPC and SEO complement each other exponentially. What does that mean?
You want to align your keyword messaging for ads, your website pages, and any other external messages, like your social media presence. Your optimized landing pages are designed to raise your presence in search results alongside your paid ads. This builds synergy in your campaigns.
4. Set Specific Goals
This may sound obvious, but you would be surprised how challenging it can be to accurately define your advertising goals. Organizations often assume it’s enough to say “get more clicks” or “get more visitors”—as if that’s not obvious.
No, the trick to a well-tuned law firm campaign is knowing exactly what you need to accomplish. This means giving a lot of thought and planning to who you’re looking for as an ideal client, considering what converting that visitor will earn you, and designing your messaging specifically for that persona.
5. Determine the Right Budget
Your ideal ad campaign budget allows for several essential elements:
- Testing different versions of your ad to see which ones perform best
- Reaching enough visitors to gather valuable metrics and fine-tune your campaign
- Allotting for a budget you can maintain over an extended time to see the best return on your investment (ROI)
By balancing the cost of keywords, your overall budget spend, and the value you need to get from conversions, you’ll learn a great deal about your future clients and apply those insights to develop ideal content for your site and future ad copy.
What Should Law Firms Expect from a PPC Campaign When it’s Done Right?
With expert guidance, your law firm’s PPC strategy will improve your online presence and build a more effective connection between your practice and those you serve.
You should see the following benefits from partnering with the right law firm PPC agency.
Increased Lead Generation
You should see more direct but also better-targeted leads. A PPC expert takes the metrics from your ongoing PPC campaign and fine-tunes ad performance. The longer you run your ads, the more you will see the exact potential clients you hope to reach.
Increased Website Traffic
You’ll see more direct clicks to your landing page, but by targeting the same important keywords on your website that you use in ads, you can align SEO to your PPC goals and vice-versa, leading to improved organic rankings for your site.
Enhanced Brand Awareness
Getting your brand noticed above all the competitor noise is one of the biggest challenges for law firms. Your combined PPC and SEO efforts will help you get seen in the most relevant places. An expert lawyer PPC agency will target specific keywords centered around your brand to capture the attention of your target audience, using retargeting to build continuous awareness throughout their decision-making process.
Improved Conversion Rates
Conversion rates improve when you focus on the most effective keywords and messaging. Working with your PPC specialist will help ensure your advertising message aligns with your website content. When people find significant value after clicking, they are more likely to follow through with the actions you are guiding them to take.
It is easy to overspend on PPC if you don’t know how to get the most value from each click. Getting seen doesn’t help if you can’t turn your presence into profits.
Quality PPC causes a positive chain reaction of events online. The more you reach the right people, the more opportunities they have to tell others about their positive experiences with your service. There are always people asking for advice on quality legal services online.
It only builds from there. With your firm’s name in front of more eyes, you have more opportunities to serve clients, and in turn, they will share their experiences with others.
Talk to Big Leap about Your PPC Goals Today!
Big Leap is serious about building trust and lasting relationships with our clients by aligning our abilities with your PPC needs. Take a look at some of our results, and you’ll see we take great pride in helping our clients succeed.
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