16 Tips To Win More Law Clients With Pay Per Click Ads

Our Best Tips to Dominate PPC So You Can Grow Your Law Practice

Legal remains one of the most competitive industries and it isn’t cheap to target keywords that will start bringing in high-quality leads. When you’re looking at spending $5-300 or more per click, you want to get your ads and targeting right from the start.

If you’ve decided that generating leads online is the right move to grow your law practice, you’ll want to make sure you get the maximum benefit out of your PPC (pay-per-click) ad spend.

  1. Set a Realistic Budget

Campaigns need data to make decisions

An effective PPC campaign has to have an adequate budget. Your budget needs to consider how many leads you need to have coming in to reach your business goals. It also has to generate sufficient clicks per day so you start generating data as well as leads. Without enough data to analyze, it will be challenging to make informed decisions around campaign optimization.

The obvious goal is getting the best cost-per-conversion possible and that only happens when you invest enough into your budget to get a clear sense of what is actually going on with your campaigns.

  1. Carefully Selected Keywords

How you pick your keywords is one way you protect and maximize the ROI of your ad budget. Choosing the correct keywords is the difference between getting more cases or wasting all your marketing money. Avoid broad, single word keywords.

Look over your ideal client persona and find the keyword phrases that will attract the clicks of the clients and cases that meet your business development goals.

  1. Understand What People Are Searching For 

To produce winning ads you’ll want to consider the reasons your ideal clients go online to look for legal information.

Searches fall into three categories

Most searches fall into three categories:

  • Conducting basic research to get information or guidance
  • Seeking out a specific practice or attorney (sometimes referred to as a “branded” search)
  • Transactional intent that indicates a need to hire or compare options

Your hottest prospects are obviously the ones in a transactional mindset. Those searches also correlate to more expensive keywords.

It might make sense to target the information seekers with guides that can help them hire a lawyer like you – a blog post like “Eight Questions to Ask An Estate Planning Attorney” – and then use the email you collect from them to retarget them with ads on social media.

Think about where there are gaps in educational content for clients and how you can create content that will “train” them to be better leads when the time comes and they are ready to hire. Giving value in advance allows you to reap the benefits of reciprocity and trust from these prospects.

Your law firm’s marketing strategy and your ad strategy should be in alignment so you can meet your revenue and growth goals.

  1. Keep Your Ads Clear and Concise

Take those keywords and phrases and draft ad copy that clearly and concisely leads your prospect to take action. Navigating through your ad should be frictionless. Make sure contact information is easy to find on your landing page.

  1. Display Advertising is Effectively Disruptive

Display advertising is those banners and sidebars that are displayed when people are scrolling publisher sites on the internet. They have evolved from being simple static images to incorporating video for your law firm. They are designed to grab attention by disrupting a user’s experience as they scroll a site, hopefully leading them to click the ad.

Since they are disruptive, the click through rate tends to be lower. These ads aren’t shown to satisfy searcher intent like an ad displayed on a search engine results page (SERP).

To make the most of display ads consider the sites your ad might be running on. Is this content you want your firm associated with?

Test different ad images and pages

Be prepared to test different ad images and landing pages until you strike the right balance. With their lower cost per click and broader targeting, you have a little more financial flexibility to test and tweak.

The smartest play for display ads is to use them to build brand awareness. The metric to monitor here is views or impressions rather than clicks.

  1. (Geo) Fence Me In

When done correctly, geo-fencing can deliver pertinent ads to mobile devices and tablet users when they enter a predetermined area. This zone is called a geo-fence and it relies on GPS technology to deliver your ad when a user enters the fenced area.

A geo-fence allows you to capitalize on what Google refers to as intent-rich micro moments.  When a mobile device user makes a location based query, your geo fence can be set up to deliver a highly targeted and relevant ad that will attract prospects who are actively seeking information online or are in a physical location that aligns with your practice area. Get creative with possibilities for geo-fencing.

Another benefit is that users who have entered your geo-fenced area can also be targeted for ads after they have departed the area as well.

  1. Use PPC Strategically to Supplement Your Organic Efforts

PPC can be the perfect complement to your law firm’s organic campaigns. Use your dominant SEO position with a PPC ad to increase exposure and drive up click through rates.

PPC Strategies are effective for niche areas

This strategy is especially effective for niche practice areas or location based targeting to get cost effective, high-qualified clicks. Campaigns can be combined with strategically placed PPC ads and other law firm marketing areas.

Stacking an ad where you already have a strong SEO position is a power play in PPC.

  1. Social Media Ads

Depending on your budget and business goals, paid social media can be another way to get the most from your advertising budget. You want to use all the tools at your disposal to get the best results and increase lead flow and growth for your firm.

While social media might seem like another branding effort only play, you can do some fairly granular targeting on Facebook and other social media platforms. If you have an email list you established for commercial purposes, you can also create an ad audience based on that email list.

You may think that Google is where you need to put your ad budget, but Instagram and Facebook have higher monthly user counts than Google. And lead costs might be more attractive on a social network depending on your ability to target, your practice area, and relative competition.

While social media hasn’t replaced Google as a digital marketing channel, if your target audience is there, your ads should be too.

  1. Keep Your Ear on Voice Search

Voice search is on the rise. Voice searches change the way people seek information online and marketers will be wise to keep their eye on how it affects inquiries, content, and related ads. A typical typed inquiry like “divorce lawyer in Norcross” sounds a whole lot different. People interact with voice assistants conversationally.

“Hey Siri, help me find a good divorce lawyer in Norcross.”

Answering questions part of content strategy

To position your firm to capture voice searches, make sure that answering questions is part of your content strategy and a consideration when writing your ad copy.

People who use voice search to make queries are ready to schedule an appointment according to Martindale-Avvo.

  1. Video Ads Increase Engagement

You’ve created a library of videos that generate cases. Repurpose your digital assets into ads and landing pages to increase engagement and click through rates. Videos on a variety of legal subjects builds trust and creates better ranking opportunities.

When you appear higher organically, you can effectively layer PPC ads onto those pages ranking for specific keywords.

Video ads are a highly effective way to attract more prospects who turn into cases.

  1. Lead with Local Service Ads

Appearing at the top of the SERP, local service ads (LSA) give law firms that are verified by Google a new way to reach potential clients. LSAs aren’t traditional search ads and aren’t managed inside the Google ads dashboard. It’s a click to call functionality and it works on a pay per lead model.

These ads are appealing to professional service providers, like attorneys because they are egalitarian and allow small firms the same exposure as bigger firms.

It’s also another way to dominate the SERP and increase the opportunities you have for click through on your ads and organic content.

Order of Google search results

  1. Optimize Your Landing Pages

An ad is only as good as the landing page you drive your leads to. It’s the first experience many people will have with your law firm, so you want landing pages to be:

  • Highly relevant to the keyword
  • Optimized for a single goal
  • Compelling, clear, with competitive language that makes your firm the right choice
  • Designed for each ad set

To increase the functionality consider having a clickable phone number, a chat option, and a fillable form.

Video can enhance the landing page experience too. Landing pages are a great place for your frequently asked questions videos and testimonials to be used to inform, persuade, and convert visitors into cases.

Pro tip: If you create landing pages that make offers you only make to ad viewers and not to website visitors, be sure to exclude those pages from being crawled and returned by bots. Make sure all your promotions, video content, and  landing page copy complies with all rules and recommendations regarding advertising by the ABA, your state, or local bar associations. .

  1. Target Website Visitors

Instead of losing your opportunity with a website visitor who comes, looks around, but does not take immediate action, you can retarget them with PPC ads. The law is an industry where a lot of potential clients have to work up the nerve to reach out or they wait until their problem is too big to ignore.

When they’re ready to act, you want to be top of mind. Retargeting them with display ads they’ll notice when they are scrolling other sites positions you to take the lead when they are ready to schedule a consultation.

Retargeting campaign can be short or long

Retargeting drives down the cost per click as well. You’ll need to determine a reasonable time for retargeting campaigns to run so think about the immediate needs of a person seeking the practice area you’re promoting. A good retargeting campaign could be as short as two weeks or as long as 3 months. But don’t run a retargeting campaign in perpetuity.

As a data point, you can analyze how your campaigns are performing with new audiences versus retargeted groups. It may indicate some adjustments are needed to get the campaign optimized.

  1. Get Mobile

Over half of all searches happen on mobile phones. Even when we’re mere inches from a desktop, it’s just second nature to pick up our phone to check something out on Google. Most of the time, we’re searching for a local business or service.

Mobile ads are one the top PPC platforms for good reason.

Make sure you’re optimizing your ad campaigns for mobile search when it makes sense and that you actively monitor and adjust to capture leads to make your PPC campaigns more profitable. Get to the top and stay at the top. Positioning matters on mobile.

  1. Get Your Region Right

There’s geo-fencing, but there’s also geography. There’s nothing worse than wasting ad dollars on a campaign you’re running in Altoona when you’re in Atlanta. If you fail to target the right regions, you can be appearing in ad spots in irrelevant cities and states.

It takes a lot to convince clients to travel and it costs a lot to target people who won’t be viable prospects.

Dial in your state (if that makes sense for your practice area), local, and maybe even play with a limited mile radius.

Informed future ad decisions

The more granular you can get your data, the more informed your future ad decisions will be.

  1. Timing is Everything

If your specialty doesn’t require having office staff available to set appointments or receive incoming calls 24/7, it might be smart to schedule your ads to run during normal office hours.

This has two benefits: reducing frustration and capitalizing on calls from local service and other ad spends.

People who call are people who convert.

Depending on your practice area, having someone available to quickly respond to incoming calls can be the difference that drives the conversion. By scheduling your ads to run only when you can meet inbound demand, you can focus on the most profitable times to run your ads and maximize your ROI.

In Closing

Pay per click advertising, in all its many forms, can be a great way to increase lead flow for your law practice. In order for it to work most effectively and cost-efficiently,  you need to understand your ideal client and how their needs and challenges relate to your business goals.

By creating ads and promoting them where your potential clients are most likely to see them at the right time, you can optimize your campaigns to deliver high ROI.

Creating, running, analyzing, and optimizing PPC ads can be a full time job.

A marketing agency that specializes in help lawyers with their PPC advertising can be a cost effective solution for getting the most out of your digital marketing efforts.

Marc Apple

Marc Apple

Digital Strategist

I like inbound marketing strategy, creative design, website development, analytics, and organic and paid search. That's what I write about.