When it comes to law firms, local attorneys need to use all the tools in their online marketing toolbox to stand out. One of the best ways for an attorney or law firm to get their name out there is to use pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, like Google Ads (formerly Google AdWord) or Bing ads.
A PPC campaign can be a boon to your practice, if your campaign is set up correctly. It’s not rocket science but it does require a bit of PPC know-how. And at TheeDigital, we know how.
To help you get the most from your campaigns, including more leads and a higher ROAS (return on ad spend), we put together our top 7 PPC tips for attorneys.
7 PPC Tips for More Leads & Higher ROAS
1. Choose Your Keywords Carefully (and Use Negative Keywords)
Targeting the right keywords is crucial to your PPC campaign. Use a tool like Google Keyword Planner to find relevant keywords for your firm that are within your budget. Keyword Planner gives suggested starting bids for each keyword, allowing you to find the best keywords for your campaign.
This is especially important for attorneys and law firms because every law firm is bidding on the same keywords, which leads Google to raise the prices of those keywords. In fact, “attorney” is the #4 most expensive keyword in Google Ads, and on Bing Ads, “lawyer” and “attorney” take the #1 and #2 most expensive spots, respectively. If you’re not bidding enough, your ads won’t show, so it’s best not to target keywords that are outside of your budget.
Choosing the Right Keywords
When you’re running ads in such a competitive market, it’s wise to target 3-5 relevant keywords instead of just your top one. And remember that targeting specific long-tail keywords like “family lawyer free consultation” will result in more leads than one-word keywords like “lawyer.”
In addition to the keywords you want to target, it’s a good idea to set your negative keywords. These are irrelevant keywords that you don’t want to trigger one of your ads.
Since there several types of attorneys, most law firms can benefit from using negative keywords to target the right type of client. You can use a negative keyword generator like kparser and Negative Keyword Pro or simply add negative keywords that are the opposite of your target keywords. For example, a family lawyer would want to add keywords related to criminal law to their negative keywords list since most family lawyers don’t deal in criminal law (and vice versa).
2. Use Responsive Search Ads
Responsive search ads are a relatively new, very powerful addition to Google Ads. Responsive ads let you enter multiple headlines and descriptions to create an ad that changes to show more text and a more relevant message to your customers. Google automatically tests combinations of headlines and descriptions to find the one your customers are most receptive to. It’s kind of like A/B testing without any extra work on your part.
In the example below, Google will mix and match the 12 headlines and two descriptions to find the one that resonates most with people searching for a divorce lawyer in Wake county.
3. Make Sure Geo-Targeting is Set Up Correctly
As an attorney, your business is location-specific, so it’s important to make sure geotargeting is set up correctly. You shouldn’t target your entire state since clients aren’t likely to drive several hours to your office. Since the cost-per-click (CPC) is so high on law-related keywords, you don’t want to waste your ad spend on people that aren’t going to make the trek to see you.
Decide on a radius that makes sense for you and your potential clients and target that area using zip codes. If you have multiple locations, separate them into their own campaigns so you can target accurately instead of having one ad for all of your locations. You can elevate your geotargeting by adding locations you don’t serve to your negative keywords list.
To set your advertising radius, go to “settings” in the lower left-hand menu of your Google Ads dashboard. Click the campaign you want to modify, then choose “locations.” Here you’ll be able to set your radius:
You can’t monitor your campaigns 24/7 but luckily Google Ads has powerful automation tools to do it for you.
To decide which PPC-related tasks to automate, think about the tasks that you do most often and require the most time/attention. Chances are, you can automate these so you can spend more time working with clients. Just remember that PPC is not a “set it and forget it” part of your marketing strategy. While some tasks can be automated, you’ll still need to manage your campaigns and check in on them regularly.
Automated bid management is a commonly used automation tool native to Google Ads. This automatically adjusts your bids (within your set budget) so you get the most out of your ads. There are a variety of scripts in Google Ads, as well as third-party scripts, that automate additional repetitive, time-consuming tasks. It’s just a matter of finding the one(s) that are most beneficial to you.
5. Make Sure Your Ads Are Relevant
None of these optimization tactics will work if your ads are bad or don’t speak to searchers’ pain points. Touching on people’s pain points is a key tenet of advertising in general: tell people how you will solve their problems.
For example, the ad below addresses the fact that a cracked tennis court might be keeping you from playing as much as you’d like. Luckily, they can smooth out your court and get you back in the game in no time:
In addition to addressing pain points, your messages and imagery should be cohesive across your ads, landing pages, and website. If your ad talks about a free consultation, your landing page and website should mention it as well. Being consistent in your messaging is a big trust factor and helps you stay at the forefront of your prospects’ minds since your ads will be easily recognizable.
6. Landing Page Optimization
A landing page is the page that someone is taken to when they click your ad (more about targeted landing pages below.) This is where cohesiveness is extremely important. The headline on your landing page should be relevant to the keyword search that brought the person to your page.
For example, when you click this ad for 6 month braces:
You’re taken to this page about 6 Month Braces. The keywords in the ad are right there on the landing page and it’s clear from the very beginning that this page is about how they can help you get straighter teeth in just 6 months.
User-friendliness is also crucial when it comes to landing pages. The copy on your page should be short, but compelling, and it should be easy for someone who lands on it to take action, whether that is calling your office, filling out a contact form, or something else entirely.
7. Campaign Structure: Practice Areas & Legal Issues
With Google Ads, it’s important to be as specific as possible – the more relevant to the search query, the higher the ad quality, the more likely you’ll reach top ad placement.
Break each campaign out by practice area, and each ad group by the specific legal issues people most commonly search for. The best campaigns will have landing pages for each ad group category.
If you’re following this structure, your campaign will be the practice area. In our example below, it’s “Wills & Estates.” You’ll then have ad groups for each facet of creating a will, such as estate planning, estate administration, creating a living trust, and making your last will and testament. The ads in these ad groups will take searchers to corresponding landing pages.
Sample AdWords structure:
|Campaign||AdGroups||Ad Landing Pages|
|Wills & Estates||Estate Planning||example.com/wills-estates/estate-planning|
|Last Will & Testament||example.com/wills-estates/last-will-and-testament|
For location specific ads, you can create landing pages tailored to each location.
Pro-Tip: PPC Is Not a ‘DIY’ Thing
In such a competitive space, there’s no room for error. This is where PPC professionals – like our PPC specialists at TheeDigital – can add tremendous value to your marketing strategy.