We all want the most for our money, especially when it comes to marketing a law firm through digital advertising, in particular pay-per-click advertising (PPC).
Most platforms work on a bidding system that theoretically gives you better placements and more impressions the more you bid.
This leads to one of the most common questions we get, “If I pay more, do I get faster results?”
It’s a fair question and conventional wisdom would suggest that if you pay more, you will get better results, but is it true? To answer this, we have to consider a few important points about how online advertising works..
HOW DOES BIDDING WORK?
When you advertise your law firm with Google Ads, you are bidding on your ad placement. Increasing the amount you bid may land you on a better spot for your audience, but you also could be increasing your bid for no real reason.
In many situations, focusing on solid ad creation, targeting, and audience segmentation before you hit the switch, are better ways to get your ads more prominently in front of the right people.
Increasing your budget right now may get your ad to the top spots, but it may not lead to the results you would expect.
WHAT ABOUT FACEBOOK?
Facebook’s digital advertising system works similarly. Spending more money certainly can put your ad in front of more people, but it’s more important to get your ad in front of the right people.
Diminishing return is a real concern here. If you over-budget without focusing on targeting and segmentation, you could find yourself paying more per impression than you needed.
This also generally applies to other social media advertising platforms, such as Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat and Linkedin.
WHAT IF I RUN MULTIPLE ADS FOR THE SAME GOAL?
Setting up multiple ads to the same goal can be a smart strategy to lower your cost. However, there is an important caveat here: Don’t compete with yourself! When creating multiple ads for the same goal, consider different kinds of ads and strategies (retargeting, lookalike audiences, different ad creatives for different audiences, etc.).
If you set up more than one ad on the same platform that targets the same audience, you may be driving up your own bid cost for no benefit.
This is why all people involved in your digital advertising campaigns need to coordinate efforts. Throwing money at various ad efforts targeting the same audience (either intentionally or unintentionally) can do much more harm than good.
WHAT ARE THE IMPORTANT METRICS?
When evaluating your campaign, you will likely notice that more money equals more impressions. However, impressions alone are rarely the main goal. Checking your conversion rate can often shed some light on to how your landing page is performing (for ad types that use one).
Relevance Score is an important metric, especially when it comes to increasing your budget. While this score can represent a number of factors, the relevance score metric aggregates various ad quality and relevance factors to give you an idea of how relevant your ads are to the people in your target audience compared to other ads that are targeting the same audience.
Increasing your budget can result in more impressions and even more clicks, but if it doesn’t result in higher conversions, you could be damaging your relevance score. A lower relevance score could lead to lower ad placements and fewer impressions, putting back to where you were before increasing your budget.
SHOULD I NEVER INCREASE MY BUDGET?
While increasing your budget recklessly can be detrimental, there are many situations where increasing your budget is beneficial or even essential.
You want your campaign to be competitive in your market. If your ad is getting a low amount of impressions, that could be a good sign that you would need to increase your budget.
Also, it’s important to remember that the digital advertising market is constantly changing. While one budget may have worked fine at one point, the market could become more competitive later. Conversely, it’s important to keep an eye on your campaign to see if you encounter any opportunities for lowering or refocusing you budget.
In addition to market changes, the ad platforms themselves can also change. As new targeting options are added and removed, you may find new opportunities to adjust your budget and improve your overall cost-per-lead.
Something to consider at this point may be where you are spending your current budget. To get your ads to more of your audience, one option could be to branch out to another platform. There are many opportunities of a synergistic approach. You could retarget on Facebook from traffic you’ve gotten on Google ads (or vice versa).
MONEY IS IMPORTANT, BUT IT ISN’T EVERYTHING
When it comes to a successful pay-per-click campaign or other type of digital advertising campaign, it’s crucial to have a healthy budget combined with a smart strategy. The money is important, but only one part of the equation.
Paradoxically, spending a large amount on digital with no strategy to back it up, will waste money and lead to slower results. As with most marketing strategies, a successful PPC campaign requires smart planning and finesse.
Does more money equal better and faster results? As with most aspects of legal marketing, the answer is “it depends.”