In my previous post I mentioned a great, easy, and effective way to get exposure and market your law practice on the web.
I would now like to give my brief take on using pay per click for law firms large and small.
If you don't know what pay per click is, do a search on Google, Yahoo, or MSN and you can see "Sponsored Results" typically on the very top of the search results page and on the right side of the page. How do you think those results appear there? Advertisers pay Google for their ad to appear when certain search terms are used. The interesting thing, is that advertisers pay only when their particular ad is clicked on, taking the searcher to a desired website or landing page. Advertisers bid for clicks on certain key words such as "car accident" or "asbestos". The amount that is bid is solely up to the advertiser (lawyer/law firm). The advertiser with the highest bid, will appear first in the sponsored results. The second highest bidder will appear second and so on.
On the surface this may seem to be a quick and easy to generate business. My advice, do a lot of investigation before you start. Here are some suggestions/comments before you jump into pay per click:
1. Do you have enough time to research pay per click in general, read the tutorials (Google provides good information at www.google.com/adwords)
2. Do you have the time to be able to bid, monitor, and adjust your pay per click strategy? I think that you should have to at least commit a few minutes per day to review your bid status.
3. Do you have a way to measure your results? I recommend a separate landing page on your website for you ad campaign. This allows you to monitor and measure the results of your sponsored links.
4. Could you be spending more time getting more business from the web by other means? Blog, newsletter, articles.
In theory, pay per click is great for a law practice, especially in the consumer space (family, personal injury, criminal, wills & estates, probate, immigration etc..). If business is slow, ratchet up your pay per click campaign for that month. If business is good, then put the brakes on the campaign.
For everything, the "devil is in the details". I believe a pay per click strategy can help compliment your other marketing avenues, if you do it right.