Whether you specialize in child custody or divorce proceedings, family law firm marketing is the key to reaching new clients. But what marketing works best to effectively grow your law practice? Let’s break down the options proven to successfully impact your family law business at the best ROI.
Search Engine Optimization
SEO is the process of ranking your firm higher in Google search results for particular keywords (such as ‘divorce lawyer in X’). It’s an essential form of marketing for all businesses. When your family law business shows up on the first page of search results, your site has a higher chance of attracting clicks.
Being on the first page of search engine results gives you the opportunity to attract more free, organic traffic. This whole concept may seem overwhelming and impossible. The reality is that with a well-crafted SEO strategy, your practice can become the dominant player in your local market.
Family law marketing via SEO can take a long time to generate game-changing results, but once you do, it’s extremely lucrative.
Why does SEO make sense for a family lawyer?
We rely on SEO for family firms for one simple reason, it’s where the majority of leads come from.
Even though social media, pay-per-click advertising, and newer media tend to get the most attention, organic traffic from Google is THE most consistent channel.
If you can place your law firm at that intersection in the moment of need? It’s game-changing.
Take a look at these results from a real client who focuses on divorce and child custody.
Over the entirety of 2020, 88.4% of ALL traffic came from Google Organic Traffic.
As a byproduct, 83.64% of all divorce and child custody leads that have been generated this year also started from a search on Google.
The results don’t lie.
We have tried pay-per-click ads, social media, directories, email campaigns, and nearly every other digital marketing tactic imaginable. But, we always come back to SEO because it’s consistently the #1 client acquisition channel across our roster of 35+ law firms.
How does my firm get a piece of the SEO pie?
A simplified version of what we’re doing is the process of making a series of small adjustments in order to give Google what their algorithm is looking for. Thereby, moving your firm’s page higher in the search results for particular keywords (such as ‘divorce lawyer in X’) by demonstrating that your content is the best option to provide searchers.
There are literally a million different ways to go about this, but we’ll focus on a few of the most enduring practices for optimizing a family law website.
1. High-Quality Content Pages
One of the main components of robust SEO for a family law practice is really good content. However, your idea of good content is probably different than ours.
For most family attorneys, writing is a fundamental part of your work providing legal services. Writing for SEO is significantly different and if you don’t understand that, you’re going to be resigned to a life on the tenth page of Google.
What’s the big difference between legal writing and SEO writing?
Think about the example from earlier with regards to what you do first when you need a service. You’re going to get your phone out and Google it. Now, what will you do to describe the thing you need? The path of least resistance.
This means you’ll use the shortest phrase possible, something like ‘accountant near me’ as opposed to ‘looking for the best accountant, with a polished resume and affordable rates who can also meet over Zoom.’
See the difference? Good family law content is built for the end-user, the average American who wants answers fast. My point is that while you may prefer to write in a style that is fit for review by a judge, that’s not what works on Google.
The more you write for Google, the better you will rank in search engines.
Quality of content and the number of links are believed to be the most important ranking signals in Google’s entire algorithm. Google has stated as much, “In general, webmasters can improve the rank of their sites by increasing the number of high-quality sites that link to their pages.”
What is a link and why is it important for family lawyers?
A link is simply when someone places a connection from their website to yours. Generally, the thought is that you link to things that are useful and relevant to what you’re discussing. For family law sites, links are important because they help Google make an educated guess about how your website fits into the bigger picture.
The more links you have from other credible websites that match your topical relevancy, the more Google sees you as someone of distinction amongst the millions of others.
3. Technical Search Engine Optimization
We’ve already discussed the material on the page and who is linking to it, but it turns out Google is also looking at how your page is put together.
Technical will improve your website design and help your family law website rank higher by adhering to a set of standardized guidelines that Google is looking for in terms of how your website has been developed. To make Google’s life easier as a sifter and organizer of information, they like it to be as standardized as possible. This helps them deliver your results as fast as possible.
This is perhaps, the most complex part of search optimization. Some of the technical components that Google has set guidelines on include:
- Site speed improvements
- Regular auditing
- Using meta tags
- Image alt tags
While it’s believed that technical SEO doesn’t have as much ‘weight’ as content and link building in Google’s algorithm, it can also be the defining factor that separates you and your competitor who is on the first page.
The Big Picture with SEO and Family Firms
SEO is an essential marketing strategy for any family law practice.
When your family law business shows up on the first page of search results, your site has a higher chance of attracting clicks. Being on the first page of search engine results gives you the opportunity to attract more free, organic traffic.
Family law marketing via SEO can take some time to master. Some law firms outsource their SEO marketing. At Local Consumer Connect, we bolster your marketing program to help you outrank the competition. With our SEO strategies, you can put your firm in the spotlight as the number one practice for divorce, mediation, or family law.
Family Law Attorney & Google Ads (Pay Per Click)
Google Ads is a form of pay-per-click advertising. When someone searches for ‘family law practice,’ or ‘divorce lawyer in X location,’ your advertisement shows up in the top banner of results. When people click on the ad, you have to pay, but if no one clicks on it, you pay nothing.
Google Ads is a paid version of SEO that can help you quickly gain clients. The big difference is the long-term cost per acquisition of each new client. Ads will always cost you money while converting a divorce client from a page on your website organically is not going to cost you beyond the initial investment of page development.
Google Ads can get you leads quicker, but leads from Google Organic Search will provide a lower cost per acquisition in the long-run.
We tell our clients to take advantage of both options because, ultimately, you want to acquire as many clients as possible, regardless of where they come from. Especially for younger firms who are in the infancy of their presence online, ads can be a really powerful tool to help you generate the revenue needed to develop the assets (SEO) that will pay off in the long run. Like with anything, success will be defined by the execution of the campaign.
Ads Help Family Lawyers Be at the Right Place, At the Right Time
Marketing through Google Ads for family law firms can be an excellent approach because people only tend to search for a divorce lawyer when they need one.
With PPC, you get traffic to your website or a call from potential clients in need of a lawyer. When someone is in immediate need, they use what we call ‘high-intent keyword,’ which simply means they are in the buying phase of the sales funnel. When a campaign is run correctly, it can generate immediate results and produce a tremendous ROI.
However, there are a few downsides to this approach, so you don’t want it to be the only one you use. Unlike SEO, you also stop showing up in search results as soon as you stop paying.
Cost is a significant factor. Every click, good or bad is going to cost you. Without the guardrails implemented by a skilled Ads manager, you might spend $1,000 before you know it with no cases in hand.
Here’s the Good News
Clicks for family law terms are on average, cheaper than many other practice areas. As you might have guessed, personal injury terms come in at #1, often followed by criminal law. From there, the keyword click rates drop sharply.
However, you need the right people with the experience to get this right. To be successful when getting started with Google Ads, you’ll want to focus on a few core areas:
- Targeted keywords to advertise your family law firm (e.g. “divorce attorney”)
- Keywords to avoid (to save you from wasting money)
- How to create compelling copy that will get your ad clicks
- How to optimize your website design to convert clicks into customers
Google Adwords is one of the best forms of marketing for attorneys and family law firms seeking new clients – if you get it right.
Using Social Media to Connect with Potential Clients
Social media is a challenging avenue of marketing for lawyers. Why? Not many people are going to Facebook for help in finding a divorce lawyer. Family law, divorce, and visitation disputes can be really nasty.
However, these platforms are useful for sharing information and enhancing your brand identity. Many people expect businesses — including family law firms — to have social media accounts. If you choose this route, use it to share links to new content on your website and create a sense of community.
Law firm marketing through social media requires a disciplined strategy. You’ll need lots of content to share and someone savvy to the ever-changing algorithms. If you’re not an expert in social media, consider hiring the help of a marketing agency.
Well crafted social media pages assist your SEO and can build credibility, but it should not be the main form of marketing.
Reviews and Referrals
Never underestimate the power of word-of-mouth—it’s some of the best advertising a law firm can get.
Both referrals and positive reviews can bolster your divorce and family law practice, and they won’t cost you a dollar. It’s essentially free marketing that helps to make sure colleagues and clients think of you next time someone asks them for a divorce lawyer. An organized program for generating reviews and referrals is key to effectively tapping into this channel.
Generate More Referrals for your Family Law Practice
Do you want to know the best way to get a review? Ask for it. The truth is that many law firms are either disinterested or too busy to remember to ask for reviews.
There is a real, strategic value to earning reviews on Google. A huge component of Google’s local algorithm, which dictates who shows up on map listings, current reviews. They are interested in understanding if a business is active and their relationship with customers. Ignoring this makes no sense.
To help with this process, we’ve developed our own reputation management software that automates the request and reminder process for our clients. This way, after they close a matter, they simply add their client to the invitation form and forget about it. This simple act can have a dramatic impact on your visibility.
The other big advantage of reviews is that they work as social proof. Think about your own habits again. When you are going out to dinner, do you look at the restaurant’s reviews? The same goes for your law firm.
If you put time into your review profile, it will make strangers more confident that they can trust you.
When you do get reviews, whether positive or negative, always reply. It’s believed that Google looks less at the overall score of your review profile and instead how responsive you are.
Reviews can sometimes be harsh, especially after something contentious, as a divorce settlement. But when you respond, it shows your clients—and potential ones—that you care about their experience.
Family law marketing will help your family law practice reach new potential clients, from social media to word-of-mouth. If you want to make sure your practice shows up in search results, you need a solid marketing strategy.
If you have experience in marketing techniques, you can promote your family law firm yourself. But if like most lawyers, you are time-poor but cash-rich, you may consider hiring a marketing agency with experience in the divorce and family law space.
If you’re a divorce lawyer or family law practice owner, consider employing these proven techniques for advertising for law firms.