If you want to get quick leads for your law firm, then online advertising is the best thing to do. With the help of online advertising, firms can easily reach out to a specific audience and communicate their message to them. Moreover, using online advertising allows firms to track their campaigns and make modifications immediately. To add more, you do not need to have a huge budget to use digital media for advertising your legal brands. With so many benefits of online marketing, it would be worthwhile considering online advertising. Every law firm is expected to comply with certain laws and regulations in relation to marketing and advertising. Any marketing activity carried out by law firms should not directly communicate to clients to come and avail their services.
That said, if you are wondering how to market your firm online, we’ve listed some digital platforms for online marketing.
Search Engines Ads
Search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo!, and Yandex provide different ad options. This includes search engine marketing, shopping ads, network ads, etc. Shopping ads are useful for firms who sell goods or tangible products. The audience can see the product before they buy one. For service providers like a legal brand, shopping ads may not be an ideal option to choose. Therefore, we take a look at other types of ad option in detail.
Search Engine Marketing
When a user types in a search query, there are several results displayed. Take a closer look and you will notice that some of the top results are ads. Search engines will distinguish them by mentioning them as ads next to their domain name as specified in the image below.
If a firm has performed keyword research and has bid for the right keywords, the ads will feature on top of the search results. For example, when a user searches for “legal services in Alberta” and you bid for this keyword phrase, then your ad gets featured. Usually, users tend to click on websites that feature on top of search results. Once when users click on your ad, they will be directed to the landing page of your legal website. If they find the information on your landing page relevant and valuable to them, then they may convert into your clients. These ads work on a pay-per-click basis. It means that you will be charged for ads only when users click on them and come to your landing page irrespective of how many people view your ad on search results.
To begin with search engine marketing, you need to sign-in and create an ad account. Once the ad account is created, you need to fill in the necessary details. This includes your billing details, the budget for each day, whether to target desktop or smartphone users, locations you want to target, customer segmentation, etc. Search engine marketing can drive tremendous traffic to your legal website quickly and this is an excellent option if you are able to convert a majority of the traffic into clients. Also, if your website is not optimized, then conducting search engine marketing is the best way to get your website on top of search results. However, in time to come, you will have to optimize your website eventually.
Display Network Ads
There are multiple forms of display ads that include:
Static images- square or rectangular shaped ads around a website’s content
Texts- texts ads that are created by algorithms so that they seem relevant to the surrounding content
Wallpaper- ads that fill up the entire background of a website
Flash- ads that move or flash different content
Floating banners- banners float across the screen
Pop-ups- ads that pop-up in new windows so that full ads are displayed to viewers
Video- ads in the form of videos that autoplay or plays when a user click on them
Display ads appear on third party websites. Search engines have a wide range of display networks (websites and digital platforms) on which your ads will be displayed. The cost of display ads is often affordable. Third party websites also allow for demographics, geographic, contextual and behavioral targeting so that you are able to target your legal services specifically to your relevant target audience. Many websites get a commission for their ad space with ad exchanges from search engine’s display network. Google’s Display Network is the largest among all other search engine’s display network. Additionally, Google’s Display Network includes its properties like Blogger, YouTube, etc. So, if you want to use display ads, then choosing Google’s Display Network should be your best option especially, when you want more people to view your legal ad. In order to begin with Google Display Network, you have to start by trying Google AdWords which is a search engine ad format on Google.
Social media is another very popular platform to carry out marketing efforts for firms in the digital world. Every social media platform has their own method of providing ad options. You can even set objectives for your campaigns such as creating awareness for your legal brand and converting them into clients. Facebook and Instagram are one of the lowest priced social media platforms for ad campaigns whereas LinkedIn is among the highest. In some social media platforms, you have the option of choosing your ad options while others have only one form of ad option. For instance, Facebook and LinkedIn support both banner ads, text ads, and also sponsored posts. However, for Instagram on mobile, you have only one form of ad option that is sponsored posts. With social media marketing, you can specifically target individuals based on their demographics, locations, online behavior, likes (Facebook and Instagram), job positions (LinkedIn), etc.
Just like display ads, you can choose which ad model is convenient for you. This includes PPC (pay-per-click) and CPM (cost-per-thousand-impression). In PPC, you get charged only when a user clicks on your ad. In CPM, you have to pay a fixed rate for every thousand people that your ad is shown to. Your ads will stop being served once they have been viewed by a specified number of people decided by you. Ideally, if you have a newly opened legal business, then CPM can be used so that maximum people come to know about your brand.
Pre-roll ad on YouTube
Although a part of the Google Display Network, you can separately choose to advertise your brand on YouTube as well. YouTube provides different ad format that includes banner ads, texts, flash, roadblock (homepage), and video (usually played before or in between a streaming video). You can demonstrate your expertise by adding a short video about certain laws of your land. This acts an alternative to calling your clients to contact you for a free demo session. Instead, by making use of video ads, you can get in touch with several people with one ad. For video ads, there are quite a few options as well. For some videos, users are allowed to skip the ad after a few seconds. If a user skips your ads, then you do not have to pay for the ad. In another option, users cannot skip your ad and they will have to view it before they can stream any video. Apart from viewing your ad, you can also get a desired action performed by your viewers. For instance, if you want to drive more traffic to your law website, then there is an option of adding your website link while your ad is running. When a user clicks on it, he will be directed to your website.
If you have a small law firm, then it is recommended that you stick to banner and text ads instead of roadblock or video ads. This is because they are one of the most expensive forms of ads in the online space.
There are some of the basic ad forms to conduct online marketing. Now that you are aware of how to market your firm online, make sure you create a proper strategy before you start advertising. However, if you lack the knowledge to conduct online campaigns or do not have sufficient time to manage them yourself, then it is advised to consult an experienced online marketing firm. The experienced firm will have the right knowledge and plus, will be able to carry out online campaigns that will yield you the desired results for your law firm. Moreover, a small mistake in online advertising can cost you hundreds or even thousands of dollars. Therefore, it’s best to play safe rather than being enthusiastic and hurting your law firm’s profitability.
Ali Salman is an online marketing strategist who have worked with Coca-Cola, Extreme Pita, Mucho Burrito, KIA, Honda and other Fortune 500 companies. Ali Salman now heads Rapid Boost Marketing - Canada's fastest growing search marketing agency. RBM clients include Fortune 500's and medium size businesses across North America. Ali as RBM CMO leads his team in building and managing quality, high-performing and cost-effective interactive campaigns and programs for our company's customers and partners. In his career, he has significantly improved campaign performance for large brands such as Government of Alberta, Liberal Party, Workopolis, Cathay Pacific, as well as medium to large retailers and high-tech B2B-enterprise niches.
Ali and his team develop online promotional concepts that spark viral growth through search and social media for RBM clients, devising strategies that use search engines and more to reach key demographic segments in the ways they're most likely to be receptive. Ali Salman also oversees corporate marketing initiatives for Rapid Boost Marketing, including strategic communications counsel, public and analyst relations and client education programming.