Don’t think potential clients are online? Think again. They’re there, having conversations with people they know, like, and trust. Some of those conversations will touch on issues that might require the help of a lawyer.
Facebook for law firms? Yes, really.
Facebook for individual lawyers? Yes.
Fortunately, there’s a cure: ads.
Before we dive into the details of Facebook advertising, it’s imperative that you spend time understanding 2 things:
- Who are the clients you want to attract?
- What do they care about?
Much of the success (or failure) that you have with Facebook—or really any online advertising, for that matter—depends largely on your ability to understand your audience.
If you arbitrarily show ads to everyone, you’re likely to conclude that the Internet doesn’t work for client development.
Before you start showing Facebook ads to everyone, determine your objectives.
Clicks to website
It’s no secret that you can generate clicks from Facebook to your website for pennies.
It’s certainly more affordable than AdWords clicks. But what’s the value of those clicks? Are they people who are likely to hire you? Are they the people you want to hire you?
It’s important to recognize that Facebook users don’t have search intent. In other words, they’re not actively looking for what you’re advertising. That doesn’t mean that targeting them is an ineffective strategy; it’s just that you have to think carefully about your process. As Lee Rosen puts it, “It’s about the data. Follow the data, and you’ll find the money.”
Perhaps you are using your Facebook campaign for something other than direct response marketing. Maybe you’re building longer-term email nurturing campaigns (more on this below).
Alternatively, you may want to motivate people to take specific actions on your website, such as inquiring about your services or subscribing to receive regular emails.
In order to track website conversions, you will need to install the Facebook pixel. If you are currently using the old Facebook conversion pixel, you will want to switch to the new pixel as Facebook is removing the old conversion-tracking pixel later this year.
Over at JSO Digital, Taylor Hornberger provides a useful example of a personal injury Facebook website conversion implementation.
In addition to tracking conversions in Facebook, I also encourage you to configure Google Analytics goals. I like CallRail for call tracking. If you use CallRail for tracking incoming phone calls, make sure you also add call goals to Google Analytics.
Perhaps you want to reach people near your office. With a Facebook local awareness campaign, you select a hyper-local location to show ads.
Or maybe there’s another location where people in your target audience are concentrated.
Until virtual reality gets here, video provides the richest online experience. But Facebook videos aren’t your next opportunity to talk about your years of combined experience, how hard you fight, or how well you did in law school. Instead, they are an opportunity for people to get to know you, what it’s like to work with you, and what your clients think about you.
To motivate potential clients to contact you, you can create ads right inside Facebook’s native platforms. This minimizes the friction between a Facebook user’s desire to contact you and their ability to contact you. Instead of having to click through an ad to your website, they can contact you without leaving Facebook.
One thing to consider with native lead generation is that it will limit your ability to use remarketing.
No matter which campaign objective you choose, make sure you follow Facebook’s ad guidelines:
Recommended image size: 1,200 x 628 pixels
Image ratio: 1.9:1
Text: 90 characters
Headline: 25 characters
Link description: 30 characters
Your image may not include more than 20% text.
You should also consider which call-to-action button makes the most sense for your campaign.
If your call-to-action button doesn’t match your targeting, messaging, and objective, you shouldn’t be surprised to find that very few people click on it.
If there’s any magic to Facebook advertising, it’s audience targeting.
There are 3 major audience types:
- Demographic / psychographic audiences – An audience of people based on location, age, gender, interests, and more.
- Custom audiences – A list of contact information like emails, phone numbers, or visitors.
- Lookalike audiences – An audience of people on Facebook who share traits with an existing custom audience.
Finally, integrate your Facebook advertising with other channels. For example, use existing email lists to create custom Facebook advertising audiences. Alternatively, use Facebook ads to build targeted email lists. You can stay top-of-mind with site visitors over a longer period of time by integrating these various channels.
Facebook provides detailed support for advertisers. They also have a variety of success stories. Spend time learning what works and, perhaps more importantly, what doesn’t work before you spend uninformed dollars.
If this is all Greek to you, check out Facebook’s Blueprint eLearning modules.
I expect Facebook’s role in legal client development to continue to grow. After all, people tend to log into Facebook to have conversations with people they know, like, and trust. With the mountains of data at the company’s disposal and its integration of features like and live video, Facebook will likely remain the social network, at least for the foreseeable future.
Have a Facebook success story of your own? Why not share it?