Top 5 Things Tampa Bay Attorneys Should Know about Online Marketing 2017-05-31T12:06:11+00:00

Top 5 Things Tampa Bay Attorneys Should Know about Online Marketing

Jason Crabtree

Starting an online marketing campaign is a lot of work and doing it right requires a lot of research and planning. This article shares some of the crucial items that need to be determined prior to launching your campaign. If you are a lawyer in Tampa Bay, here are the things you should know about digital advertising before getting started.

1. Which practice areas should the marketing campaign target?

Keywords: Each practice area has keywords that can be associated with it. It is important to create a plan for which parts of the practice to promote. Some of the determining factors should be which are the most profitable and which are most desirable. The search volume for each keyword should be considered as well. There may be a ton of searches for “traffic violations” but the phrase “DUI attorney” may be more profitable or desirable.

When determining keywords, remember that consumers will search multiple variations & permutations of keywords. For example: “Family Law Attorney Clearwater” and “Clearwater Family Law Attorney” bring up different results on Google.

Family Law Attorney Clearwater:

Family Law Attorney Clearwater Search Results

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Clearwater Family Law Attorney

Clearwater Family Law Attorney Search Results

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Content: Does content on the website reflect the specialty that is to be promoted? Can a consumer land on a page of the website that addresses their specific need or does the website just have a bulleted list of services?

One of the criteria that Google’s algorithm is measuring is “task completion”. What is the consumer expecting to get out of clicking through to this website & are they completing that task? If consumers click through to the site & bounce back to Google, it is assumed that they did not find what they needed & their search continues. Google does not want to present consumers with sites that fail to deliver what the searcher needs so it makes sense that the sites with high bounce rates are less desirable than the ones that keep the consumers engaged. On-Page content and mapping are important.

2. Which geographies should the campaign target?

Since every city name is an additional keyword, determining which geographies to target & how to prioritize the budget is important. Establish these 2 things in the planning & analysis stages of the campaign. This allows the marketing team to build a campaign road map. The campaign road map uses the following factors to determine the formula to follow in a campaign:

  • Monthly budget
  • Number of keywords
  • Competitiveness of the keywords
  • Number of geographies
  • Competitiveness of the geographies
  • Marketing methods to be used

The campaign road map is used as a blueprint for managing the campaign. It can give instructions for starting with a certain number of keywords & geographies then gradually adding (as benchmarks are reached or based on calendared activity) content & marketing to introduce new keywords & geographies throughout the campaign. It is not uncommon to start with 1-3 geographies and schedule more to be included later in the campaign.

3. What is your competition doing & how well are they doing it?

That old joke with the punch line “…I don’t have to outrun the bear, I only have to outrun you.” has some relevance when it comes to launching an internet marketing campaign. A campaign can be successful before completing the campaign road map if the marketing activities are strategically prioritized using data from a competitive analysis. Knowing the course is key to winning the race. Knowing what & how much the competition has done, is a big advantage when starting a campaign.

Since 85% of consumers never click past page 1 of search results It is likely that moving from page 100 to page 3 is not going to result in much (if any additional traffic. Presence on page 1 is what brings traffic. In a private study we learned that in America approximately 4.3 million consumers conduct around 15.4 million searches for legal services on Google every month. If consumers search a keyword or phrase frequently it is likely there will be more websites competing for search visibility for it. This causes SEO to have a ramp in delivery time. Since the keywords with the highest volume of traffic have the most competition, it should not be surprising that those keywords will take the longest to hit page 1. Also remember that a website cannot get on page 1 without displacing a website that is already there. Typically the website that falls from page 1 ramps up their SO activity in an attempt to recover the page 1 spot. This means that SEO efforts must continue after achieving page 1 status in order to maintain that position.

A blended marketing approach is the way to offset the investment and the ramp to leads. This means dividing the budget to include SEO (ultimately this will be the strongest source of traffic), PPC & Listings Management. The SEO portion of the budget is then split to target primary and secondary keywords at the same time. This blended approach gives a flow of traffic to the site via PPC and directory listings while the SEO ramps. The secondary keywords will start ranking first and begin bringing in small amounts of organic traffic. The organic traffic will increase as more phrases reach the first page of search results.

How much effort & resources should be devoted to each practice area? More competition will require more effort and time to get organic page 1 results. More competition will also cost more to bid on PPC keywords. This is compounded when targeting competitive keywords within competitive geographies. Example: “Palm Harbor Bankruptcy Attorney” is going to be less competitive than “Tampa Bankruptcy Attorney” therefore it will cost less to bid on keywords & will deliver faster ranking results. The reward will be smaller because there are less searchers looking for a bankruptcy attorney in Palm Harbor.

4. What kind of digital profile does my law firm currently have?

The first step could be building or rebuilding the foundation. The website needs to have robust content in order to support multiple keywords & geographies. If the website just bullets practice areas but doesn’t give any detail, the campaign will loose opportunity for secondary keywords. Example: If the word “Bankruptcy” is just a “bullet” on a services page, we miss opportunities to use secondary keywords like “Chapter 11” and “Foreclosure” etc. Before the marketing begins, there may be a need for new content and even new pages to be created on the website.

How are the Social Profiles? Did the firm already create profile pages for Face Book, Twitter & Google+? Are the pages optimized and linked together? Are there any videos to be used in the campaign? Does the firm have a YouTube page? Google My Business is important for local search marketing. Does the firm have a Google My Business profile?

How does the firm manage digital listings across directory sites? Are there incomplete profiles? Are there inconsistent listings? Example: A business address of “123 Main St.” in one directory and “123 Main Street” in another could prevent search engines from associating the directory listings with the business. If lawyers.com, findlaw.com & yelp.com don’t match, the result could be costly to the marketing campaign.

5. What is the advertising budget for this campaign?

Can it support all of my desired practice areas & geographies?

Can it support all of my marketing methods?

What is the optimal split (don’t spend the biggest part of the budget on the method that provides the smallest return)?

A blended marketing approach is the best way to offset the investment and the ramp to leads. This means dividing the budget to include SEO (ultimately this will be the strongest source of traffic), PPC & Listings Management. The SEO portion of the budget is then split to target primary and secondary keywords at the same time. This blended approach gives a flow of traffic to the site via PPC and directory listings while the SEO ramps. The secondary keywords will start ranking first and begin bringing in small amounts of organic traffic. The organic traffic will increase as more phrases reach the first page of search results.

How much effort & resources should be devoted to each practice area? More competition will require more effort and time to get organic page 1 results. More competition will also cost more to bid on PPC keywords. This is compounded when targeting competitive keywords within competitive geographies. Example: “Palm Harbor Bankruptcy Attorney” is going to be less competitive than “Tampa Bankruptcy Attorney” therefore it will cost less to bid on keywords & will deliver faster ranking results. The reward will be smaller because there are less searchers looking for a bankruptcy attorney in Palm Harbor.

Summary:

Knowing the answers to the 5 topics above will enable a marketer to build a successful campaign. Marketing Bionics has detailed data for site and competitive analysis. We would love to give you a free market analysis report for your website. If you would like a free report fill in the form on the right side of this page and send let us know. We’ll collect the information that we need and run the analysis. Then we’ll send you a report showing your website strengths and your top competitors.