Most Lawyers Are Doing Facebook Ads Wrong

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Facebook advertising doesn’t work for most lawyers that I talk to. I hear a lot of “we tried it and got nothing.” They’ve walked away and are testing other options.

Unfortunately, most lawyers have a limited sense of the Facebook possibilities. They think it’s all about the little ads in the right sidebar.

There’s more—way more—to Facebook advertising than little ads with smiling faces along with in-stream ads with suggested posts.

There’s a reason Facebook has a market capitalization of nearly $200 billion, and it’s not about those little ads. It’s about the data. Follow the data, and you’ll find the money: big piles of money.

Facebook watches us. It’s learning things about us and it goes way, way beyond what we “like.”

It’s watching us in ways we can’t even imagine, and it’s providing the data it collects to advertisers, who use it to sell us stuff.

How to Use Facebook to Your Advantage

Our pay-per-click advertising guru (who happens to be my son) uses the tools provided by Facebook to the advantage of our firm and to the advantage of others he helps (contact him directly if you want more info).

He’s doing some clever things for lawyers. For instance:

  • Targeting existing clients. He’s able to feed client phone numbers into Facebook, identify them, and create custom audiences. Then he can feed specific ads to those users. It’s not of much value to a family law practice, but it’s great for more general practices and creates demand for other services provided by the firm. Can you say “cross-selling”?
  • Targeting people like existing clients. Then he takes it to the next level and targets lookalike audiences. These are people who are demographically and geographically similar to the audience of existing clients. They “like” the same things, buy the same things, and visit the same sites (off Facebook). Facebook does its algorithmic magic to figure out who these people are and target them specifically. Wow.
  • Target custom audiences. He can keep a watchful eye on our website and take note of who visits us online. Then he can focus in on those visitors who haven’t yet hired the firm. He can create specific, helpful, targeted messages for this group and urge them to move forward. Double wow!

It’s a brave new world, and it’s only getting more specific, targeted, and powerful. Remember when you could just run a small ad in the phonebook?

If you’ve tried Facebook and given up, it might be time to go back. If you’ve never tried it, then it’s certainly worth exploring. Be careful, however, and don’t go alone: it’s scary over there. Bring along an experienced guide.

Facebook advertising does work. It just requires an understanding of how to make it work and how to put all that data to work for you.

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