Google ads work for law firms, but they can work better if you’re constructively working with your agency. My name is Dan Toombs and I’m the founder of Fast Firms, the brand design marketing technology company just for law firms, and I’m also a lawyer. Make no mistake about it, Google Ads’ success for your law firm will derive from working with an agency that gets the legal industry and a joint preparedness to work together to drive better outcomes.
Now, here are the 5 things your law firm can do to get better results from your Google ads.
Work with an agency that understands the legal industry.
Yes, we do keep banging on about this because we’re increasingly inheriting Google ad accounts that were managed by agencies that due to their lack of insight didn’t simply fire. More specifically, wrong keywords, bad ad copy, spelling mistakes, and very ordinary landing pages or a website seriously hampered these accounts, Not to mention keywords that were culturally wrong. For example, targeting attorneys in Australia or the U.K.
Seriously, work with an agency who is legal industry-specific or who can illustrate at least 10 law firms that they’re currently working with.
Acknowledge that you’re not going to be an overnight success.
We talk often here about the fact that SEO is a long game in getting results and ads is significantly shorter. That said, it isn’t overnight. In our experience, many law firms leave it far too late to get on board with an ad strategy, and when all other lead channels are drawing up or have dried up, they want a quick fix. The far better approach is to get on board when you’re not starved of leads and can indulge in getting the fundamentals right over the first few months and not expect too much in return.
Building out a Google Ads campaign isn’t an easy job. It pulls from different directions, including campaign strategy, keyword research, ad copy landing or website pages, conversion tracking, AB testing, and depending on your firm, it might even be CRMs, marketing automations, and remarketing. It’s a very big job.
Agree with your agency on the objectives.
High volume Google ad agencies make their money on low effort clients. We can tell you that law firms are not low effort clients. The cost per click in the majority of legal industry verticals is invariably through the roof, and for this reason alone, you need to have all your ad campaigns dialled in and frequently looked at. It’s tricky enough with just one practise area, but if your law firm is a diverse practice law firm, running ads across numerous practice groups, it can be very, very complex. Working with an agency on nailing the objectives for each campaign will help you both stay really focused.
Being realistic about the outcomes.
If you’re expecting your ad agency to drive 50 personal injury leads to you each week on a $2,000 per month spend, you’re dreaming. Work with your agency on the keywords. Paramount importance if you’re working with an agency that isn’t law firms specific or haven’t a heavy book of law firm clients that they currently working with. Why it’s important is because your firm is spending money on keywords and if they’re wrong, you’re blowing money. Wrong means many things, but typically, when we inherit accounts badly managed by other agencies, we’re seeing a scramble approach that derives from the agency simply using the Google keyword search tool for an area of law and then populating the whole account with those keywords.
For example, you’re a family law firm in Melbourne, and your ad agency is chasing terms like lawyer, no win-no fee, unfair dismissal, alimony, attorneys, et cetera. Now, don’t laugh, these are the exact terms that an agency was using running a very expensive campaign for one of our clients. It goes without saying, they didn’t make a cent, but it cost them tens of thousands of dollars.
Let your ad agency know of file opens.
Great Google ad management is a two way street. Regardless of the type of marketing we’re doing for law firms, we literally plead with them to tell us the file opens for the month.
Now, this is where the rubber hits the road. Even with really sophisticated dashboards and CRMs, we can see everything, but what we often don’t see is the lead flow from click to conversion to file open. Give your ad agency every chance of making this work by giving them file opens. It will help them second guess ad copy, AB test ads, and be regularly considering existing keywords and contemplating others. If your law firm is serious about making Google Ads work, these five things will hold you in good stead.
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