Social Media Ads, Google Ads, PPC (Pay per Click), Remarketing/Retargeting, Geo-Targeting, Video Ads, and Email Marketing are various forms of digital advertising used by many personal injury law firms.
Online advertising is expensive. A minimum budget for Google advertising for lawyers can range from $5,000 per month to $10,000 per month, depending upon the market. Many personal injury lawyers spend $50,000-$100,000 per month and more.
No matter whether your law firm is doing only PPC or many forms of online advertising, it’s not something to jump into blindly.
Online Advertising Is a Two-Step Process
TV advertising is a one-step process, but online advertising is a two-step process which makes online advertising even more expensive. When a viewer sees your TV ad, the viewer needs to take only one step… call the phone number advertised.
But when a potential client responds to online advertising, the potential client must first be convinced to click on a digital ad that takes the potential client to your landing page. From there, the potential client must be convinced to take a second step to contact you.
With PPC and online advertising, attention needs to be paid to both the online ad and what happens at that second step. Read How to Design Google Ads for Lawyers.
Some lawyers simply direct potential clients from online ads to the homepage of their law firm website. But this is a substantial waste of your online advertising budget. After landing on the homepage of your website, injured accident victims looking for a lawyer will likely bounce off your website and eventually call another lawyer.
What is a landing page? A landing page is a page designed to convert paid advertising leads when they land on the page after clicking your online ad.
The Right Way to Do Online Advertising
- Send advertising leads to a landing page, not your homepage
- Use multiple landing pages, each designed for a specific ad
An advertising lead is different than someone searching. An advertising lead is responding to advertising and is, therefore, more focused and interested in hiring a lawyer than someone who is searching to find what they are looking for.
Because an advertising lead is more focused, you want to serve limited and specific information designed to get the lead to call you. Because landing pages only get visitors from advertising, you don’t need a lot of information on the page for search engine optimization.
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Your website is an online brochure. It needs to have substantially more information for search engine optimization and less focus on leads. But it has too much information for online direct response digital advertising.
Hopefully, your website will encourage potential clients to call you when they find it in the organic search results. But when a potential client responds to a direct response online ad, the viewer needs to find exactly what they are looking for.
A landing page will hopefully serve what the viewer is looking for. Custom landing pages designed for specific ads will serve exactly what the viewer is looking for.
For instance, separate landing pages should be used for car accidents, motorcycle accidents, or nursing home abuse.
Someone injured in a car accident looking for a lawyer will be more likely to call you when seeing a landing page for car accidents than seeing a landing page for all kinds of accidents. This is further accentuated for more specialized cases such as motorcycle accidents or nursing home abuse.
The cost of designing specific landing pages is well worthwhile because 1) You still pay for the click even if the potential client loses interest and goes away; 2) The cost of that click is expensive, and 3) The value of a lead is so high.
Because of the increased ROI, the cost of designing specific landing pages can probably be recouped within a couple of months or less.
Design of the landing page is also crucial. A well-designed landing page could result in four times more calls than a poorly designed landing page.
Attributes of a Well Designed Landing Page
- Clearly displays and identifies your brand
- Speaks to the needs of the lead
- Includes a video testimonial
- Simple, clear methods of contact
Branding a Landing Page
It is vital that the landing page displays and clearly identifies your brand. Otherwise, your landing pages are no different than a generic TV commercial in the middle of the night selling nondescript products.
While a landing page without a brand may convert a few visitors, the majority of visitors will want to know that they are contacting a law firm and not some unnamed entity, thinking who knows where their information will go.
Of course, it’s better to brand anything other than a run-of-the-mill law firm name. However, the law firm name can be used together with the brand.
If your law firm has a vanity phone number, that should be your brand, and the landing page should prominently brand the vanity phone number on the landing page.
Landing Page Branding Should Be Consistent with PPC Branding
Your brand should be displayed consistently in both the PPC ad and your landing page. Using a vanity phone number is a brand that makes it easy to brand both the PPC listing and the landing page.
Although Google doesn’t allow using a numeric phone number in PPC ads, Google does allow using a vanity phone number because it is a brand.
A Landing Page Should Speak to the Needs of the Lead
As mentioned above, the landing page should be topic-specific so that someone injured in a construction accident doesn’t land on a page about car accidents.
The landing page should not extol the virtues of the law firm but should be limited to identifying what the lawyer can do for people injured in that specific type of accident.
The landing page should be simple and should not have too much to read or have links to other pages on the law firm’s website or other resources. Think of the landing page as a dead-end that the lead drove into. There should be no way out except to contact you.
Landing Pages Should Include a Video Testimonial
Video on a landing page can significantly improve the probability that a lead will call you. Testimonials improve that probability even more. A video testimonial is explosive.
Watch this video testimonial and ask yourself whether this would get you to call if you clicked on Google advertising and were looking for a car accident lawyer.
Want to improve your ROI even more? Use specific video testimonials for each landing page. A landing page for construction accidents should have a video testimonial from a client in a construction accident. A landing page for motorcycle accidents should have a video testimonial from a client in a motorcycle accident.
Landing Pages Should Include Simple, Clear Methods of Contact
A landing page should have several simple, clear, easy methods of contact.
- If your law office has a vanity phone number, it should be displayed prominently.
- Use a large click-to-call button (required)
- Use a chat service (required)
- Contact form (optional)
The best and preferred method of contact is for a potential client to call you. When someone is speaking with the caller, there is no worry about not reaching the caller later and it is more likely that the caller will cease looking for another lawyer.
If your office has a vanity phone number, you have the dual advantage of displaying a brand with your vanity phone number and providing a means for potential clients to call you.
Using a large, easily seen click-to-call button further encourages potential clients to call you.
Using a chat service provides a method for potential clients to communicate with someone when they believe your office may be closed. Sometimes, even during the day, a lead may prefer to chat. A chat service can obtain significant information for you and can even do a “hot swap” or live transfer to transfer all chats to your phone line, so you can instantly connect with a potential client.
The least important is a contact form. It’s so unimportant that the use of a contact form is really optional and should always appear at the very bottom of a contact page.
Contact forms should require the least amount of information possible. The more information required to be filled out, the less likely it is that someone will fill out the form.
Many law firms require detailed accident and injury information to be entered into the form. This is a huge mistake. This information should be obtained during a phone call. The only information fields should be the name, email address, phone number, and message.
Another very common mistake law firms make with contact forms is making sure someone in the office will instantly see the emailed contact form. This is another reason to avoid contact forms. I have seen many reasons why law firms never saw emailed forms I filled out when trying to refer a personal injury client.
Use Off-Line Advertising to Increase Online Traffic & CTR
Off-line advertising, especially TV and billboards, send more traffic to your website and also increases your click-through rate. To find out why read “Why TV Improves Website Rank & Online Advertising CTR.”
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Philip L. Franckel, Esq., is the author of this article.
Phil Franckel is the owner of 1-800-HURT-911® and over 1,100 domain names. He is a personal injury lawyer and a former Member of the Board of Directors of the NYS Trial Lawyers Association. He is an expert on branding, advertising, marketing, and SEO. He has been doing SEO since 1994. Phil Franckel has written and produced TV commercials for lawyers and other industries and has been a consultant to owners of vanity phone numbers. Phil has a blog about lawyer advertising at LawyerAdvertisingBlog.com. Phil Franckel began his first business in 8th grade, owned businesses in various different industries, and worked freelance for ABC Wide World of Sports and Monday Night Baseball. In his spare time, Phil Franckel is the Commanding Officer of the Communications Bureau of the NCPD Aux. Police Section.
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