The law has always been, and will likely remain an extremely popular and important profession. That means that there will always be hundreds of thousands of eager college students practicing the law in the hopes that they will one day become successful attorneys. Many of them will achieve that goal, which means that there are going to be a lot of new lawyers, adding to all of the ones who are already there. With so many lawyers out there, it can be difficult for anyone to stand out and get themselves noticed, which is why many lawyers use ads to get their name out into the world.
The more successful lawyers with a lot of money to spend will advertise their services on everything from bus benches, the sides of buses, billboards, TV, and radio. However, not every attorney has those kinds of resources, which is why many attorneys use online ads instead. They are a more cost-effective and more efficient way for lawyers to let potential clients know about them. However, the sheer number of lawyers means that even this avenue is extremely crowded. However, there are ways to stand out and at On The Map Marketing, we can help you do just that.
We are a digital marketing agency with extensive knowledge and experience with lawyer websites and advertising. That means we know how to create an efficient advertising campaign that will let you stand out from the crowd and make a name for yourself. Keep reading to find out why attorney ads are so competitive and learn how we can help you with your campaign.
The Pros and Cons of Online Advertising
The benefits of online lawyer ads are many, but it would be unfair not to note that there are some downsides as well. But first the good. Online ads are more focused and targeted than traditional advertisements. Traditional ads try to reach as broad an audience as possible while online ads focus more on clients who are likely to use your services. That means online ads can generate more leads than traditional ads even though they have a narrower focus.
The main downside to lawyer ads online is that it is a highly competitive marketplace. Online ads tend to be PPC (pay per click) campaigns where a law firm pays the search engine to have their law firm show up at the top of the page by bidding on keywords that are relevant to their business. They are the search results with the word ad beside them. They grant the law firm higher visibility but they can be expensive. The reason is that law-related keywords are highly competitive, which means that they are expensive, so a firm can end up spending hundreds, and even thousands of dollars on a PPC campaign.
Another problem is that people may not always click on those sites with the word ad because they might be wary of a paid ad showing up in their search query. That means they may skip over the high-ranking PPC results and choose one of the organic search results. That does not mean a PPC campaign is a bad idea, it just has to be carefully managed in order for it to be successful. Keep reading to learn how to create successful ads for attorneys.
How Much Should You Spend on Advertising?
This really depends on the scope of your firm and your overall budget. The first thing you should do is take a look at your gross revenue goal for the following year and find out how much you will need to increase your current revenue to meet that target. Once you have made that calculation, you should set aside about 7% to 10% of your revenue on advertising if you have never spent any money on marketing before.
That might seem like a lot but it does eventually pay dividends and gives you a high return on investment. You can start smaller if you have a new firm, but you should not ignore advertising no matter how much you spend on it.
When you start using Google Ads, there are a few steps you need to take if you want your campaign to be successful. The first is to understand your marketing goals, i.e. whether you want to increase traffic to your website, generate more phone calls, or anything else. A clear goal is important when you start. If you have multiple services, then you need to decide on which one you want to highlight in the ad. So, if you are a personal injury attorney, you should decide if you want to focus on car accidents, slip and fall cases, medical malpractice, and so on.
You should then set a budget for your campaign. Start small and learn what works best before expanding further. Also, make sure to decide on which keywords you are going to use in your ads. You should make that choice based on which keywords are popular in your area for your practice as well as the services that you offer.
Once you have made those decisions, you should then write the ad. Make it short and to the point using the keywords that you chose. And make sure to end it with a call to action (CTA). The final step is to choose which measurements you want to track, such as phone calls from ads or from your website. It is best if you track as many measurements as possible if you want to refine and optimize your campaign.
Scope Out The Competition
If you want to stand out, then you need to learn what your competition is up to. Enter the keywords that you want to rank for in the search engine and see what results come up. You can check out those websites to see how your firm differs from theirs and learn what you need to do to stand out. You don’t have to spend a lot of time obsessively stalking their website to try and figure out how much they are spending and what keywords they are targeting. A few minutes checking out their website should yield all of the information that you are ever likely to need.
Once you have researched your competition, you should highlight what makes your firm different—and better—than theirs. You need to have a hook that will get someone to choose your firm over all the others competing for their attention. You should also make sure that your site has a prominent CTA. The CTA is a link on your website that spurs the visitor to take action if they need it. The CTA should be a persistent element on each page on your website with a link to the page where they can contact you. That means they can quickly get to that page at any time using the CTA.
You should also make full use of ad extensions so that you use as much space on the results page as possible. Ad extensions feature extra information about your business like its address, phone number, and ratings. Check out what extensions your competition is using and make yours more robust by adding as much information as possible. This will give you a leg up over your competition and allow potential visitors to quickly learn what your firm is all about.
Set Up Your Geo-targeting Correctly
This is a fairly basic step but also an important one. Geotargeting simply means that you are targeting the regions that your practice serves. This might seem like obvious advice but many law firms end up targeting too broad a region. For example, a firm may only serve clients from a few nearby cities but their campaign targets the entire state. This is bad because a potential client interested in your services may be disappointed to realize that your office is too far away. It is better to focus your advertising on areas where clients are likely to be able to conveniently reach you. The settings tab in Google Ads can be used to narrow the location of your business so that you can focus on people who have convenient access to your business.
Make Sure Your Ad is Relevant To The User
When someone is searching for a lawyer, they are doing so with a specific intent in mind. That could be wondering how much compensation they are owed from a car accident, figuring out divorce proceedings, or wondering what the legal procedure is for a medical malpractice suit. When you create a lawyer ad you need to anticipate the intent of a potential client and preemptively answer any question that they might be asking. That can make your ad stand out more because it directly lets people know what they can expect from you.
So if you are a personal injury attorney, you can advertise that you can help clients calculate how much compensation they deserve to get. If you are a divorce lawyer, then let potential clients know if you handle child custody as well. When someone searches for a lawyer, they are not just going to use terms like “personal injury lawyer near me”, they are also likely to use terms like “how can a personal injury lawyer help with a slip and fall?” If you can provide a brief answer to questions like that in your ad, then you are likely to attract a lot of new clients. So you should structure your account in a way that lines up with a searcher’s intent so that you can anticipate what they need from a lawyer in your field.
Prioritize Phone Calls
Phone calls are important for every business but especially so for law firms. The reason is that when someone gets on the phone, they show a very strong interest in the services you have to offer. When it comes to law firms, it means that they want to speak to a lawyer as soon as possible, which means that they have a legal problem that needs to be resolved as quickly as possible. By speaking directly with a potential client, you are far more likely to convert them into actual clients. So how do you prioritize phone calls? By doing all of the following:
Set up a call-only campaign – That means the person interested in your services has to call you if they want to get in touch with you. Make sure that you specify this in your ad so that there is no doubt in anyone’s mind about how they can reach you.
Use a call extension – This is an extension for mobile users that allows them to call you directly from your ad. They just click on the extension and they are dialing your number. This is extremely convenient for the user and it gives you another way of getting your phone number on the search results page.
Track all of your calls – By tracking your calls you can fine-tune the approach you use to take those calls. For example, you may realize that your office gets most of its calls between certain hours. You can then bid for those hours on mobile so that your ad shows up during those peak hours. You can do this by dayparting; this is when you use the Dimensions tab in Google Ads to schedule your ad at the times that provide the most value to your business.
Make sure you implement a 24/7 answering service – Even if you notice that most of your calls come at a certain time, you will still want the ability to field calls at all hours of the day. You are more likely to get a client if they can reach your firm at any time of day rather than on a fixed schedule. You can do this by setting up an automated answering service or by setting up staffing that can field calls outside of normal business hours.
Use Videos on Your Landing Pages
This can be intimidating to some since not all lawyers are comfortable on camera. However, hearing about the services that a lawyer provides from the lawyer themselves can instill trust in the visitor to the page. The video doesn’t have to be complicated or lengthy, in fact it is better if it isn’t. The video just needs to be a short but informative explanation of what your firm does and how it can help the visitor. As long as the video is done in a sincere way that doesn’t feel like a commercial, people are likely to appreciate the effort.
Video testimonials from your clients are another great way to engage visitors. When they learn about how you have helped other clients directly from the clients themselves, it can instill a sense of trust in the visitor and give them the belief that you will be able to help them. A well-produced video on your landing page is sometimes what is needed to turn a visitor into a client.
Make Sure That You Have an Online Chat System
You want to make sure that there are several different lines of communication open between you and your visitors. While having a phone line is vital, a chat feature on your website is just as important. This allows visitors to ask questions that are not covered in detail on a FAQ page or a video. A chat feature is a great way for people to get in touch with your firm when they have a question that they might not think warrants a phone call. That being said, a chat session can end up leading to a phone call, which can lead to a new client. So make sure that your website has a chat feature to increase your accessibility.
Build Up Your Brand
You will want any potential visitor to your site to know that yours is a firm that they can trust and that will fight for them no matter what. You can gain that trust by building up your brand and you can build your brand by using display ads and remarketing. Display ads are the small ads you see on the side of many commercial websites. They are relatively unobtrusive so they are less annoying than banner ads or pop-up ads. They are surprisingly cheap too, but nonetheless a lot of firms don’t use them even though they have proven to be quite effective at capturing attention.
Track All Of Your Actions
If you want to know what is working and what is not in your ad campaign, then you need to track all of the actions on your site. The information that you get can help you to optimize your campaign and make it more effective. You should not just measure the number of people who are clicking on your ad, but rather pay attention to the number of leads that you are getting. You should also record how many conversions you get from phone calls, chat sessions, and whatever other line of communication there is between you and your visitors.
You should run A/B tests to find out what aspect of your campaign is working and what needs improvement. This can be a complicated and time-intensive process, which is why you should hire a professional to do it for you. At On The Map Marketing, we do extensive tracking of our websites and PPC campaigns so that we can quickly make any adjustments when necessary. So if you work with us, you never have to worry about tracking any of those important actions by yourself.
Use All Search Engines Available
Google is the biggest player in the search engine game but they are not the only ones. Bing is not as popular as Google, but a lot of people use it and you can get a lot of conversions when you run PPC campaigns on that search engine. Not only that, but advertising on Bing is cheaper as well, which means that you could potentially get a higher return on investment when using Bing.
Let On The Map Marketing Handle Your Attorney Ads
That is because we are a full-service digital marketing agency that can create a website for you, run an SEO campaign, and create a PPC campaign. Whatever digital marketing task you need to be done, we can do it for you. There is obviously a lot to know about creating ads for your law firm and there is no realistic way that you can run a campaign and your law firm at the same time.
If you hire On The Map Marketing to run your ad campaign, then you don’t have to. We can run your campaign for you and make sure that it has all the elements it needs to be successful. So get in touch with On The Map Marketing when you are ready to have an ad campaign that will get your law firm the attention it deserves.