Criminal defense attorneys are lawyers or usually barristers who specialize in criminal law and represent and defend individuals, entities, and corporations from allegations of criminal conduct. As such, the demand for the services of a good criminal defense remains at the highest level than other lawyers like divorce attorneys or even personal injury lawyers. But, finding a good criminal defense attorney can be a tall order, especially looking for the right one. For the legal fraternity to allow a greater influx of new clients and an ever-expanding outreach of their services, we have the criminal defense attorney marketing guide for 2022, which combines elements of both digital marketing and legal practices to make for the perfect plan to catapult your criminal defense advertising into the stratosphere.
Let’s start off with some basics for criminal defense attorney advertising in the context of digital marketing first.
Well Designed Website for Criminal Defense Attorney’s Practice
For the cornerstone of your digital marketing for a criminal defense attorney, the website serves as the first point of contact between you, the criminal defense attorney, and the potential client. With that in mind, the first requisite you should have is the design language of the website, which should be both attractive and maintain a level of professionalism expected from the legal fraternity. A website that is well-designed will always beat a well-crafted advert because while adverts are temporary, a website will exist as long as the business exists, and so, it needs to be consistent in its design and its evolution as the criminal defense attorney practice grows. Here are some pointers for your website for criminal defense attorney marketing,
Design a Responsive Website
In a world chock full of websites, your website has the edge only when it is well-designed and is incredibly responsive. The attention span for us humans has shrunken down to just a few seconds, and if in these few seconds your website fails to load a page or fails to load up at all, well, there goes a potential customer. Therefore, after design, the second most important thing to have on your website is improving response times and load times, as these can make or break a website. Other considerations for the website for criminal defense attorney practice include,
Use eye-catching visuals
Take advantage of the visual prowess afforded to you by the website by utilizing images, GIFs, or even videos to help sell your services. Many websites will have generic or stock images which also look good and do their part. Eye-catching visuals will come across as much more engaging than any other thing that could be placed on your website. Do look into it while planning out your website.
Add Client Testimonials
Much like reviews on Yelp! client testimonials add a sense of association and authenticity to your website. The better the testimonials, the better your service will be presented to potential clients. Websites for many products and services already do that, and it is not difficult for criminal defense attorneys to ask their clients to leave a glowing review on their website to be used.
Add Service areas
Since anybody in the world can easily access a website without geographic or political boundaries, your website should clearly state the physical extent of your services i.e. the areas or localities that you do serve. This is an important part of your website as it can help weed out the potential leads from any unwanted individuals.
Display your experience credentials
Much like a resume, your website will also be proof of your longstanding services in a particular field (in this case, criminal defense practice). Your experience credentials will also serve as a benchmark for people as many would prefer a person who has more experience (especially in litigation) than someone with an impressive law degree but no experience. Use your website as the platform to really get this point across to the potential customer.
Optimize Criminal Defense Attorney practice for Local SEO
Your primary source of clientele will obviously be from a close vicinity; people who are far off aren’t really looking for a lawyer who isn’t accessible all that much. Therefore, for your digital marketing for criminal defense attorneys, you are going to want to optimize for local search engine optimization (SEO), as it will maximize your chances of getting clients that are in a particular area that’s accessible for them as well as you. Here are some pointers with which you can go about optimizing your website for local SEO.
Create Google Business Profile
The first step for optimizing local SEO for your criminal defense attorney practice is to create a Google Business profile. Start by filling out the details asked, add certifications and recommendations, and you will be all set. Creating a profile on Google Business will help you get registered with Google as a service, and it will be better able to optimize your website and service for local searches i.e. searches that originate from a locality within your vicinity.
Build Citations for your Criminal Defense Practice
Building citations is also very important for your local SEO of the criminal defense attorney marketing. Because citations help with the authenticity and veracity of the business and help garner more customers for local SEO, this would be a very good step for the digital marketing of your criminal defense practice.
Optimize for “near me” searches
Near me’ does exactly what it reads like. As we are discussing local SEO, many people, when searching out for a business or service, add in the keyword ‘near me’, which allows Google to use their location for optimized results and businesses that are easily accessible. These searches are very frequent and are more likely to return your result if you are in the locality and your local SEO has been optimized. So, a good part of your plan for optimizing for ‘near me’ searches would include optimizing for that keyword as well.
Respond to Client Reviews
If you are a service that is frequently active on social media and other platforms, you should look into responding to reviews and queries as actively as possible as it is also a very good indicator of a business that reaches out to its clientele. Responding to questions on Google, reviews on Google Maps and other social media sites and review aggregators, you can even help quell some misconceptions and answer simple questions regarding your business as a way of outreach and to drum up some business from these platforms as people are more likely to approach a business that is socially active.
SEO for Criminal Defense Practice
Aside from local SEO, for general SEO, you will also need to perform and undertake some steps to make sure that the primary objective of digital marketing is completed: optimal search engine optimization would be that whenever somebody searches for criminal defense attorneys, your name would pop up first among the search results, at least on the first page. Because we all know nobody goes to Page 2 of Google’s search results page. Here are those steps that will drastically improve your search engine optimization for a better digital footstep for your criminal defense attorney service.
Perform Competitors Analysis
A big part of search engine optimization is looking at what the high-ranked competitors are doing and then emulating them with your personal touch. When you start your website and its search engine optimization, chances are that there will already be websites that will be ranked very high on the list. The first step you would take would be to perform a competitor’s analysis and look into the factors that make their websites such highly ranked. Once you understand them, compile them and emulate them for your own SEO strategy.
Extract keywords related to Criminal Defense Lawyers
Keywords are the basic building blocks of what constitutes search engine optimization, and your SEO strategy will heavily rely on the proper usage and optimization of keywords that are relevant to your niche or service. In this instance, our keywords would relate to criminal defense lawyers and firms, and any associated keywords that your competitors use and are searched very often (therefore have high traffic meaning more searches are performed using them) would be your main target. Using SEO tools like SEMrush and others will make this task easy and some will automatically show you the top keywords against a specified niche.
Write website content that converts
Once you’ve extracted and compiled those keywords, you will then need to write and edit website content that uses these keywords and optimizes them in such a way that the content and the entire website get ranked pretty high on Google’s search page results. These can be in the form of blog posts, website content, meta descriptions, and a whole lot of other content types that Google’s bots will automatically rank as better and an overall upwards trend will be noticed for your website. Using these keywords is imperative and the more naturally and frequently they are used, the more likely it is that your website gets ranked.
Perform On-Page Optimization
For further refinement of your strategy, you will then need to look into on-page optimization. On-page optimization includes meta tags optimizations, image alt text, keywords placements, headings optimization, etc.
Technical SEO refers to the optimization of website UI, Page speed, Core web vitals, and Schema. Technical SEO play’s vital role in website crawling and indexing as it deals with all the technical aspects that help crawlers and bots to identify all the important information. Google Search Console also helps in identifying and fixing technical SEO issues related to coverage, mobile usability, and crawl budget.
Link Building for Legal practices
Link building is an off-page SEO strategy that helps in building website authority through quality brand mentions and links from niche relevant websites. Link building is essential for every criminal defense attorney as quality links help a legal firm rank on super-competitive keywords and drive organic traffic. Link building is an arduous process and requires a lot of time, but when it pays off, it means that your website will have had a lot of outreaches in terms of links.
Content Marketing for Criminal Defense Lawyers
With content marketing, legal firms should aim to use all types of content (blogs, video marketing, pictures, and infographics) to market criminal defense and legal services. As such, attorneys and lawyers can use all these tools to engage people, a broad base of customers, and attract potential clients out of the people who interact with their content. In 2022, more people are likely to respond positively to content marketing, as those days of boring advertisement strategies have begone in favor of more nifty, personalized marketing that is easier to consume and interact with. Here are some pointers for effective content marketing for your criminal defense attorney firm.
- Add a Blog sectionAs you might have seen with many websites, especially the better ones, they always have a ‘Blog’ section where many frequently asked questions or general questions about the niche are answered. Criminal defense is a vast topic, a vast niche with many bases to cover and many questions to answer that the potential customers will read and interact with. Therefore, a ‘Blog’ section that discusses and hosts content on all things criminal defense should be a nice and beneficial addition to the website
- Writing informational Criminal Defense contentAside from the blog, what will really get the ball rolling for your website and SEO, on the whole, is additional information content that you produce for criminal defense tactics, strategies, and whatnot. This content can be in the form of blogs, guest posts, or even videos or infographics just to make them really easy to interact with and understand. Additionally, if you use blog posts or guest posts for that matter, using a judicious number of top-rated keywords will further complement your SEO strategy
- Sharing the latest insights and informationSimilar in vein to how it is a good strategy to be active on social media platforms to respond to people’s queries and reviews, your strategy will also benefit a lot if you have an active profile on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, and your regularly post content relevant to your service and niche. In this case, you can share the latest developments, news, insights on popular cases, and even tips on anything that is popular in criminal defense. This way, as people interact with your posts increasingly, when the time comes, they are more likely to select you for the job
- Adding Client’s case studiesThis one can be a bit tricky, as many clients actually don’t consent to some of their case details to be put on the internet for anybody to view or in public access, but if and when they do, it can be a great addition to your website as your success stories and how you can lead a client to lawful victory over the prosecutors. These case stories and success stories are always helpful, and you should definitely look into them
PPC for Criminal Defense Attorneys
PPC is a pay-per-click model, and it is a form of digital marketing wherein you only pay for the adverts which have been clicked upon by the viewer. This is one of the most popular methods of digital marketing as it is one of the most consumer-focused advertisement tactics and corporations love it because they only have to pay for leads that actually materialize, unlike in conventional marketing, where you pay for the whole ad or space regardless of whether or not it actually brings in sales leads or not.
Here are some pointers for getting started on PPC for criminal defense attorneys.
- Optimize Landing Page: The landing page on your website is exactly how it sounds: whenever somebody accesses your website, it is the page that greets them the first. The homepage, if you must. Optimizing your landing page is a must, not just for SEO and digital marketing in general, but also for your PPC strategy to pay off. Because whenever somebody clicks on your advert, they will be routed to your landing page, and if it isn’t optimized well, you can forget that lead could ever turn into a business.
- Local Service Ads for Legal Firms: Google offers local service ads for legal professionals to generate qualified leads. One of the major benefits of local service ads for lawyers is that you only get charged when a lead is converted. It is a pretty different model from Google Ads Click vs impressions costs.
- Use Google Keyword Planner to Find Keywords: Google Keyword Planner is Google’s own tool for managing, extracting, and researching keywords related to a specific topic or niche. You can use the planner to find and compile keywords that you can use for PPC and SEO for your criminal defense attorney marketing.
- Use different match types for keywords: Using different match types for keywords will also help with your PPC and your digital marketing in general and using different match types for keywords improves the responsiveness and the traffic that each keyword can generate.
- Use Ad Extensions to improve CTR: CTR is called click-through rate, which is basically the number of times your ad is clicked and the number of times it is displayed in front of the user. Ad extensions, as the name suggests, improve your click-through rate for adverts, and people are more likely to respond to them positively if done right.
- Keep track of your Ads performance: Keeping track of your advert’s performance is also imperative, as it will help you gauge the response of the people towards your adverts and you can then use that input for your next campaign.
Social Media for Criminal Defense Law firms
Social media for criminal defense law firms include pages on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other platforms where you can get an audience, and out of that audience, you can potentially get a few business leads. As they are most popular right now, Facebook and Twitter boast a huge subscriber base and Facebook also offers paid adverts and marketing, so it can be very useful in terms of both outreach and marketing. Here’s how you can use the social media option to your advantage.
- Optimize social media Pages: Optimizing social media pages will get you a steady stream of organic visitors and traffic to all of your social media accounts and will generate buzz about your firm and the services you provide. Start by making a proper page and marketing it (using both paid marketing and word-of-mouth strategy) to help it capture the audience that you need to target for your criminal defense law firm
- Share Content Regularly: Most importantly, you need to share content and share it regularly. If you’re inactive on your accounts most of the time, this strategy won’t work as effectively as it should. Being active on your social media and sharing content regularly helps keep interested in your service, and on your page, and keeps traffic on the social media platform towards your page or account
- Engage with the audience on social media: In the same vein as sharing content regularly, and as we’ve already touched on it a little bit, engaging with audiences on your social media accounts by answering questions and interacting with people goes a long way toward optimizing the social media marketing strategy in such a way that by you engaging with people, there will always be interest and traffic on your page, which can eventually translate into the platform churning out business leads by the day
To conclude, marketing for the criminal defense attorney, especially in the context of digital marketing, requires you to follow a strategy and several steps in between to make sure that your efforts aren’t in vain and that this actually pays off in the sense that business leads start coming from online sources. Done right, PPC, SEO, and digital marketing can all take your business to new heights. Done wrong, and you will be pouring down your resources down the drain so this needs to be done properly.