Keyword Research

5 Strategies for Generating Affordable Leads for Your Legal Firm

Leilani Bruce
Published on Mar 29, 2019

5 Strategies for Generating Affordable Leads for Your Legal Firm

When it comes to marketing, the legal field is one of the most expensive and competitive industries. In fact, the terms “lawyer” and “attorney” both rank in the top 10 most expensive keywords for pay-per-click channels like Google Ads – you might pay up to $47 or more for each and every click to your website!

Don’t be discouraged!

Whether you are a marketing professional or a top-tier attorney looking to grow your practice, you’re in the right place. There are plenty of affordable attorney lead generation strategies that can yield new leads and high return on investment (ROI) for your legal firm.

Keep reading for our top 5 attorney lead generation strategies!

1. Optimize the Resources You Already Have for SEO and Conversion Rate Optimization

If you already have a website, you already have one resource you can use. Before you embark on an expensive new advertising project, make sure you are optimizing the resources that you have already invested in.

Doing basic optimization for on-site SEO is one of the best ways that you can maximize your existing resources with minimal work.

SEO Review

  1. Site speed is enormously important for both SEO as well as user experience. If you are using a platform like WordPress, there are dozens of plugins that can help you optimize your site speed. Un-installing any plugins that you no longer use and compressing images on your site can also help boost speed.
  2. Use keywords strategically in title tags, descriptions, headers (H1, H2, H3, etc), and the body of your content. Make sure image alt tags are all filled out to describe the images on your website for accessibility.
  3. Google Search Console (free), Screaming Frog (free), or Moz Pro (paid) can help you identify broken links within your website. For example, you might be linking from one of your blog pages to an external resource that was deleted by the webmaster. This is both an SEO faux-pas as well as a poor experience for users. Fix it by deleting the link or finding another similar resource to replace it with.

Conversion rate optimization is another great way to get more out of your existing resources and to increase the ROI on advertising campaigns. Use a tool like VWO or Google Optimize (free!) to run A/B or multivariate tests to make sure you are converting as many leads as possible through your website. Test things like button color, page layout, and website copy. This will help you get more leads from your existing traffic, as well as reduce the cost per lead for any future advertising you do.

2. Build Strategic Legal Content Using Long-Tail Questions

Strategic content marketing is one of the best ways to engage your audience and increase SEO traffic.

Unless your website is professionally optimized and has a long history of utilizing best practices for SEO, it is challenging - if not impossible - to rank on the first page for major keywords. For example, it could take years and thousands of dollars to get to the first page of Google for a term like “Attorney in Los Angeles”. However, there are thousands of hidden gems in content marketing that will help you rank faster for questions that your clients are asking.

Finding Long-Tail Keywords

Two great tools that are invaluable in helping you identify the right long tail keywords for your attorney lead generation efforts are the Google Keyword Planner and the SEMrush Keyword Magic Tool. To use these tools, simply enter one of your major keywords or services you offer. The Google Keyword planner is free to use and will populate a list of related keywords along with search volume and competition. SEMrush’s features are limited in the free version, but a paid account offers keyword research as well as a full suite of marketing and SEO tools.

Here is a screenshot from the Google Keyword Planner. This is a great free tool that can help you identify new keywords along with the average monthly searches and competition.

attorney lead generation

These lists give you ideas about the types of questions that your clients have about legal services. Then, search in Google for the answers to some of these questions. Many of them will be answered a hundred times over from top blogs and websites, however, you will find hidden gems among them.

These are the top criteria for ideal question phrases:

  1. You know from your own experience in the niche that this is a question that clients might reasonably wonder about
  2. When you search in Google, you see primarily organic results (at least 7 on the first page)
  3. You have never heard of some of the websites in the top 10 results
  4. Some of the top 10 results seem a little bit irrelevant, or like they won’t actually answer the question that you typed in. For example, for a question like “Can I get divorced without it being public record?” you might see results that allow you to search public divorce records. While the related keywords are very similar - “public divorce records” - the intent is entirely different.
  5. The cost per click is reasonable according to your budget and the value of your conversions, and there is Medium or Low competition for the keyword you plan to target.

Once you have identified an ideal question, build a piece of content like a blog post or landing page that answers the question. In order for this tactic to work, you must create genuinely valuable, thorough content in an SEO-friendly post.

3. Reduce PPC Costs by Niching Down 

PPC (such as Google Ads and Bing) is one of the most competitive advertising types for lawyers and attorneys, which means audience targeting is more important than ever. If you are already running PPC campaigns, refining your targeting will help you reduce costs and increase conversion rate. If you are new to PPC these tips will help you find your ideal audience and get started.

Narrow Down Your Keywords

Your law firm may focus its practice on a specific niche of law, or you may offer a wider variety of services. Focusing each campaign as narrowly as possible will make it easier to connect with your audience. You also have a better opportunity to gain more leads at a better price, and ultimately close more leads.

For example, advertising “legal help” is far too general. If you focus your practice on “family law”, that is a great starting point! But even that is broader than is ideal for your marketing campaigns. You want to make the most out of your ads, this means being strategic with the keywords you want to target. You’ll want to keep this in mind as you break down your campaigns. Consider running separate ads for each service you want to promote.

Here is a screenshot from Google’s Keyword Planner. Notice how the general terms “legal aid lawyers” and “legal help” have high competition. Although their cost per click is relatively moderate, you could lose money from people clicking on your ad and not finding the services they are looking for.

screenshot of attorney lead generation keywords in google keyword planner

While the keyword “family law attorney miami fl” has a higher average cost per click, the competition is significantly lower. Because this keyword is more specific to the area and legal services offered, users who interact with the ad will be more likely to find what they are looking for and convert.

screenshot of google keyword planner

It is important to consider the search intent of the customer you are trying to reach as you plan messaging and keywords for your ads. As a family law firm, you could be using messaging such as “Get Your Free Consultation with the #1 Family Law Firm In Las Vegas”.

However, you are likely to connect better with your audience if you speak specifically to their needs: “Ready to Adopt? | Get Your Free Consultation | #1 Adoption Law Firm in Vegas”. Speaking very specifically to your audience will help you increase your click-through rate and decrease your cost.
attorney lead generation

4. Reduce PPC Costs by Narrowing on a Geographic Location & Finding Affordable Demographics

Demographic Targeting

 5 Strategies for Generating Affordable Leads for Your Legal Firm

Targeting by demographics is another way that you can focus more specifically on the people you really want to reach. With Google’s demographic targeting, you can refine your targeting on a granular level focusing on characteristics like sex, age groups, parental status, and household income.

If you’re a child custody lawyer, you might want to exclude people who are not parents from your audience so that you aren’t wasting your ad dollars.

Geographic Targeting

 5 Strategies for Generating Affordable Leads for Your Legal Firm

Geographic targeting is another great feature you’ll want to take advantage of. If your firm practices locally and you like to meet clients face-to-face, you don’t want to waste your budget attracting leads from halfway across the country.

Those who practice nationally and primarily communicate with your clients by phone or internet have even more flexibility.

For example, if you are a national DUI attorney who wants to generate leads using Adwords, you can use the Google Keyword Planner Tool to find geographic keywords that are more affordable. Did you know that the average cost per click for the key phrase “DUI attorney Fresno” is almost 250% the cost of “DUI attorney Boise”?

5. Embrace New Attorney Lead Generation Techniques Like Messenger Bots

Traditional digital marketing platforms such as Google Ads and Facebook are saturated with legal firm advertisements. This means that it can be harder to attract and retain your audience’s attention, and it can be very costly.

Staying on the cutting edge of marketing and testing new platforms is a great way to ensure continued success.

Messenger Bots

Messenger bots, such as on Facebook Messenger, are a growing trend that are still far less saturated than traditional methods. The way they work is similar to an email newsletter subscription, where a Facebook user agrees to receive updates from your page and you can send them information and advertisements.

There are a handful of plug-and-play “bot” software that requires no coding or programming skills that you can use to create automations. These provide information and collect lead information from subscribers. Manychat is one of the chatbot leaders. They offer free accounts with basic features and Manychat branding or paid accounts with advanced features and white label services. Compared to email marketing, messages on Facebook typically receive much higher open and click rates, meaning your users are more engaged.

If email automation experience to take new subscribers through a “funnel” that ultimately results in a sale or consultation, you are well prepared to build a messenger bot flow.

Even if this idea is completely new to you, there are a growing number of bot creation agencies, freelancers, and templates focused on helping legal firms attract new leads.


Attorney lead generation can be competitive and expensive. Before spending, build a foundation for your efforts by improving your SEO and conversion rate. Decide what services you want to offer, and understand what audience you need to advertise to reach your ideal client. This foundation will promote the success and affordability of all of your campaigns from digital to traditional.

If you’re looking for a digital marketing partner to support you in attorney lead generation, contact Pacific54 today.

7 Responses to “5 Strategies for Generating Affordable Leads for Your Legal Firm”

  • Maite says:

    Very good article. It would be good to explain the pros and cons of using bots in accounts of this type.

    • Leilani Bruce says:

      Thanks for the feedback! I’ll definitely consider that as a topic to explore in the future!

  • Carly Linger says:

    I think SEO is my problem. Thank you for the advice. I never learned it and now I am going to go back and try to fix the problem.

    • Leilani Bruce says:

      Awesome, if you’ve never worked on it, going through an audit and implementing some of the simpler updates can make a huge improvement.

  • Erica says:

    Good to know information. Do you have more content in regards to attorneys and legal prospects/interests?

  • Gus Santana says:

    I agree a good SEO is needed for you to get good leads. Its good my firm had invested with a good SEO company.

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