Facebook Advertising for Lawyers: 17 Zuckerberg-Approved Techniques

facebook-advertising-lawyersOver two billion active users in little more than a decade: that’s why seven million businesses have flocked to Facebook advertising.

The issue is that most law firms don’t have a clue where to start.

In this article, we will answer the following questions:

  • How do you get the most from Facebook advertising?
  • How do you create compelling ads?
  • What’s the best way to harness this marketing platform for your law firm?
  • How do you run a cost-effective ad campaign that will encourage clicks, raise brand awareness, and turn browsing prospects into paying clients?

The following techniques outline what you should be doing to get results from your Facebook advertising strategy.

Let’s get started.



1. Create an optimized Facebook page that includes rich media

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A Facebook advertising campaign should work alongside your other marketing channels such as your website, SEO, LinkedIn profile, and Google Ads campaign.

Start by setting up a Facebook page. It is a requirement for using Facebook ads but is also a marketing channel that can help you organically attract interest to your firm.

Through your law firm’s Facebook page, you can:

  • Showcase the legal content you’ve created – videos, blog posts, eBooks, etc
  • Showcase upcoming events
  • Reach out to your target audience with thought-provoking stories, ideas, questions, and informative content to encourage engagement and build relationships
  • Demonstrate credibility and the results you achieve
  • Communicate with your audience through Facebook Messenger – both as a conversion tool and a customer service tool
  • Build a community based around the services you provide

2. Target a hyper-specific audience to keep ad relevance high

Relevance is the number one quality to aim for with your ads. Otherwise, you’re flushing money down the drain, attracting people who will never become customers.

Here’s a simple example of some of the targeting options available on Facebook.

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With Facebook’s demographic and interest-based targeting options, your audience can be even more granular.

You can also define your audience by location, like in the example below.

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Additional areas you can target include:

  • Where they live: Cities, suburbs, regions?
  • Age-group: Baby boomers? Millennials? Retirees?
  • Interests: how do your target customers spend their time?
  • Educational level: University graduates? College students?
  • Relationship status: Married, single, divorced?
  • Gender: Male/female?

Pro Tip: Use Facebook Audience Insights to help you understand your current audience

If you have a Facebook page already, Audience Insights provides a clear picture of your audience and can help you dig deeper to select the individuals most likely to interact positively with your ads.

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This approach ensures that…

    • Your ad messages resonate with the people they reach
    • You can raise curiosity and interest in your target customers
    • You don’t waste dollars attracting people who are never going to become customers

3. Set clear campaign goals

What are the core metrics that you want to measure – and what are your goals for the campaign?

In general, a campaign’s Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) should follow the SMART goal-setting methodology.

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It’s not realistic to get 200 clicks and 10 new clients by next week from a single ad for a cost of $20. That’s not a SMART goal… it’s more like an SMRT goal.

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Clients will take time to select their lawyer; they are usually high value but low volume.

When you are selecting your campaign goals, have the end in mind but don’t focus solely on the big picture. Break it down into achievable chunks and daily, weekly, monthly and yearly targets.


4. Make your ads engaging and relevant

Here’s a simple but effective tip, your ads don’t need to be boring.

Just look at this example from Colorado Legal Group.

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You want people to engage with your ads by reading or watching them, then to take the required action to move them along your sales funnel.

This means talking to your target audience in a language that makes sense, appeals to their needs or wants, and clearly lays out what they should do next.

When creating your ads for your potential customers, remember these items:

  • What language and tone do they prefer
  • What type of content appeals to them most
  • How do they like to engage with such content
  • What are their likes and dislikes

Then you also need to keep in mind that your ads should reflect your brand and the outcome you expect from your audience:

  • Your brand identity: The logos and colours etc. displayed consistently and correctly?
  • Your tone: Is the tone consistent with your other online media from your Facebook page to your website?
  • Your message: Does it align with your firm’s values and beliefs?
  • The benefit: What do viewers get out of viewing it? Are you offering them a solution to a problem they have right now? If so, what?
  • The action you want them to take: Do you want them to download some info to help them research and build awareness of your firm?

Here’s an example of a Facebook ad that ticks all of the boxes.

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There is more on each of these points in the techniques that follow but, as an overview, a standout law firm Facebook ad will feature:

  • An attention-grabbing headline
  • Fresh and original content
  • High-quality images that reflect the subject matter or video (if possible)
  • A compelling call to action

Remember, don’t let stale, dated, or boring Facebook ads become an annoyance for your audience. Keep your fresh and original.

Here’s another excellent example from our friends at Colorado Legal Group.

fathers-rights-facebook-ad


5. Create multiple versions of ads and split test them

There’s an art to making Facebook ads persuasive. It’s a valuable skill to master.

However, even if you have the best copywriter or designer in the world, there’s no sure-fire guarantee it will work every time. There’s only one way to find out – testing.

The most effective campaigns leverage ads with multiple versions of copy and imagery that are tested to see which work best such as this split test example from Werman Salas P.C.

law-firm-facebook-a-b-test

Items you can test include:

  • A more direct headline
  • A more emotional text that appeals to their pain points
  • A slightly different format e.g. bullet points or shorter sentences
  • A stronger call to action
  • And, more enticing imagery

Split testing provides the opportunity to learn what your audience wants from your ads. By continually testing and refining your ad creative, your campaign’s performance is guaranteed to increase over time.


6. Incorporate video into your ads

Video is the future of Facebook ads.

Facebook is pushing video and users are loving it. You should too, just like Werman Salas P.C. does.

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Just like with the use of video marketing on law firm websites, video is the ideal way to get your message across because:

  • It grabs attention
  • It raises awareness
  • It’s memorable
  • It drives action
  • It’s easy to consume

An informative and engaging video will convert more paying clients than pure text and image-based ads. We see it time and time again in our own campaign data.

So how do you best incorporate video into your ads?

Here are some best practices:

  • Keep it short and compelling: grab attention and succinctly deliver a message that fits in with the headline and text
  • Include a call to action in the video – by text or verbally
  • If possible, deliver your message without sound – around 80 percent of Facebook videos are watched without sound. Consider using text overlays.
  • Split test different variations of your videos to see which work best

7. Think mobile-first with you ads

According to Hootsuite, 88% of users are accessing Facebook via mobile devices. This “mobile-first” trend applies to all aspects of law firm digital marketing.

If you want to increase your Facebook ad campaign’s performance, it’s time to develop your mobile strategy.

What are a few of the best practices for mobile ads?

Focus on vertical video as mobile users can easily expand and watch it full-screen without having to have the auto-rotate facility on. Quickly get to the point – or you will lose your audience.

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Use short video ads – mobile attention spans are short and people are easily distracted.

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Design your ads for mobile, as opposed to desktop. This can include changing the orientation of your video or imagery as well as the length of the ad copy, like this example.

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8. Always include a call to action

Your Facebook ads are no different from any piece of marketing. Always include a call to action that encourages users to take the next step.

Otherwise, you simply won’t get enough clicks.

This has been mentioned already but is important enough to warrant a section of its own. A strong call to action can literally make or break your ad campaign.

Here’s a Sprout Social graphic that breaks down common calls to action and how effective they are:

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Do you see how the following examples from other law firms vary – but they all include a request for the user to take direct and specific action:


Sign up for a free consultation!

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Read our blog!

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Find out about…

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Register now!

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9. Understand your sales funnel and create ads specifically for each stage

You need to plan the right types of ads for people at each stage of your sales funnel.

Consider whether you’re trying to:

  • Raise awareness of your firm (branding)
  • Get clients to consider hiring your firm (marketing)
  • Convert them right now by getting them to call you (selling)

You may aim for a balance of all three approaches; which means you’ll need a variety of different types of ads for the different goals.

A simple sales funnel may help you understand this better:

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Ideally, prospective customers with whom you build awareness and spend time to educate will consider you when they need the type of services you offer; they will then pick up the phone, email you or contact you through Facebook Messenger.

So what might an awareness ad look like? Appeal to their pain points…

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What might a consideration ad look like? Demonstrate your credibility, social proof, and results…

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And what might a conversion ad look like? Create urgency for them to contact you…

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10. Choose powerful optimized images and test them

Facebook posts with images see 2-3 times the engagement than purely text-based posts. This applies to ads too.

Luckily, Facebook has an entire image gallery you can choose from.

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Your image is usually what a reader sees first so make it count.

Here are a few tips to consider:

  • Make it relevant to the topic
  • Choose a photo that is persuasive and powerful
  • Select one that is relevant to your target audience
  • Use images with people as opposed to inanimate objects

11. Create carousel ads and experiment with other formats

As an alternative to the standard single image ad, carousel ads allow you to show two or more images and/or videos, headlines and links or calls to action in a single ad.

Ad viewers are able to scroll through the ad to view different images or videos with a simple swipe of their smartphone screen or tablet.

Like in this example:

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Facebook allows you to create different types of ads:

  • Single image ads
  • Single video ads
  • Carousel ads
  • Slideshow ads
  • Collection ads (new)

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While carousel ads are often used by retailers to showcase different features or benefits of products, there is potential for law firms to use them to:

  • Demonstrate different benefits of your services
  • Highlight details that add to your credibility as a law firm
  • Tell your ‘story’ from several different angles
  • Attract different niches from within the same general target audience

These ads can appear in mobile and desktop Facebook feeds, as well as Instagram.


12. Create retargeting ads for Facebook page visitors or visitors of your website

Another important technique in Facebook advertising is to retarget customers who’ve already interacted with your law firm online – usually either on Facebook or via your law firm website.

Here’s how it works:

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A prospect may not end up contacting you but their actions demonstrate a need.

Well-managed retargeting campaigns generally boast higher conversion rates than standard campaigns, so they’re worth pursuing.

These ads are conversion-focused. They are a last-chance effort not to lose a prospect. A good rule-of-thumb is to make them as personalized as possible, and include in your ad some recognizable content but also something new, like an offer.

Here is an example from digital marketing expert Brent Harkins of Colorado Legal Group.

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13. Create compelling offers and gated content

This is one that lawyers struggle with.

However, you can create compelling ads. Just look at this example.

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The word “offer” is often associated with discounts, freebies, and fire sales but it doesn’t need to be. Most good advertising depends on the strength of the offer.

Brian Clark said:

“Great copy doesn’t seem like an ad, it seems like a favor”

If you, as a law firm, can make it seem like you’re doing your target audience a favor, then you’re more likely to be successful.

Take a look at this ad for a free consultation. Does it seem salesy?

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There is an offer and if I was looking for immigration advice, I’d certainly be interested in taking a look. After all, there’s nothing to lose. It looks like someone’s doing me a favour.

Here is another example of a law firm with a targeted message for an audience further in its sales funnel.

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It shouldn’t be too difficult to start creating a few offers that your competitors just haven’t thought about. Most law firms are woeful at this aspect of Facebook ads!


14. Send traffic to high-converting landing pages

Without well-written, high-performing landing pages, your ads are a waste of money.

You can place as many relevant and original ads in front of your target audience as you like. They can be as engaging and entertaining but unless you’re converting clicks into customers, you’re falling at the final hurdle.

Here is an example of a great landing page.

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So what should a good landing page feature?

  • A headline that instantly reflects the ad copy in the reader’s mind. You don’t want to confuse visitors with a different message from the ads
  • Bullet points that relay the benefits of taking the desired action.
  • Copy that reflects the goal of the landing page: For a free download, a short list of bullet points should be enough; if you want paying customers, your copy will need to be longer, more persuasive, with plenty of social proof.
  • A call to action to take the next step – download/sign up/book a free consultation.
  • A clean uncluttered design that looks great on mobile and is easy to navigate – with well-chosen images or good quality video.

Read more about the anatomy of a perfect law firm landing page.


15. Create “lookalike” audiences

Another great technique for laser-targeting ads to specific audiences is to create ads for your existing highest-value and most-engaged customers.

These are called “lookalike audiences”.

Facebook allows you to create an audience based on individuals who “look like” your target customers.

This can be used for people who have:

  • Called your firm
  • Downloaded a resource on your website
  • Submitted a contact form on your website or landing page
  • Signed up to your newsletter
  • Watched a video for a predefined duration
  • and more

Here’s what it looks like within a campaign.

The people you target with this strategy are more likely to share the demographics of your target audience, making lookalike audiences an excellent audience to market to.


16. Master the art of Facebook lead ads

People don’t like filling out forms. Especially on mobile devices.

Facebook knows this and that’s why they introduced lead ads, which help you gather the information you need as easily as possible.

Here’s an example of how a lead ad displays.

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Lead ads make it dead simple for mobile users to fill out forms by populating form fields with user information they already have, like full name and email address. Best of all, a user never needs to leave Facebook to complete the form. They can enter their information directly into Facebook.

This enables you to get the info you need directly from the mobile ad without having to make a user jump through hoops on a dedicated landing page. And, that’s one step closer to becoming a paying client.


17. Track the metrics that really matter

With a paid Facebook ad campaign, you want to know you’re getting a good return on your investment.

Now it’s time to track your campaign’s progress.

In most cases, we recommend segmenting your analytics data by engagement and conversion metrics.

Engagement metrics

  • Impressions
  • Clicks
  • CTR
  • Video Views
  • Video View Length
  • Ad Frequency

Conversion Metrics

  • Lead Form Submissions
  • Landing Page Lead Submissions
  • Telephone Calls
  • Content Downloads
  • Cost Per Conversion

Facebook is very granular with its tracking and reporting. You cannot claim that you “don’t know what’s going on” or how much you’ve spent.

It’s all there in black and white (or blue and grey) for you to track your ROI.

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First steps on the Facebook ad journey…

Facebook advertising: if you don’t hang your hat on that hook, your competitors will.

Why?

Because, for law firms, Facebook provides:

  • The most in-depth, robust and varied advertising platform for client-facing businesses
  • Powerful tools for targeting the right audience
  • Detailed insights for tweaking and improving campaigns
  • The biggest target audience on the planet
  • The best bang for your buck if you get it right

Paid Facebook ads are becoming an important avenue to get in front of your target audience. There’s a learning curve, sure – but you don’t need to throw a million bucks into it for it to be effective.

Start small, follow the 17 techniques above, and fast-track the journey to more leads and growing your brand.

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