[This is the first of a 3-part series discussing Lead Generation strategies for law firms.]
Pay-per-Lead (PPL) is a popular online advertising payment model, where a law firm (or any business) only pays for each phone call or email that is directed to their firm. Usually, the advertising agency presents the consumer with some type of form that pops up when they click on the ad. The law firm only pays the agency if the consumer fills out the form, or takes other action as directed by the ad. PPL services generally don’t require law firms to pay anything up front, although that isn’t always the case.
If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. PPL marketing purports to only charge for guaranteed leads. However, just because a potential client fills out a form that pops up online doesn’t mean that they are a guaranteed lead. Often, these “leads” are people who are still in the research phase, and were hoping to score free legal advice. These “potential customers” also frequently provide false contact information. In short, there is no quality control for these so-called guaranteed leads.
Another problem with PPL is that these agencies sell the same leads to multiple law firms at the same time. So, if you have just purchased new leads, be aware that you may be the third law firm calling back your lead that week. The best strategy is to contact all leads immediately, and offer them a lower price to gain a competitive advantage.
All PPL companies are not created equal. Some lead gen companies will allow you to dispute what constitutes a billable lead. For example, if you are a personal injury law firm, and are being contacted about criminal defense work, with one of these companies you would have no problem disputing the fruitless leads. Some companies will even do additional screening to ensure a lead is relevant, to maximize the amount of guaranteed leads. However, these more hands on services come at a premium.
Some PPL services charge over $100 per lead, which can add up quickly and can be a huge drain of resources if the leads do not pan out. It can take as many as 10 or more leads before you actually acquire a client through PPL – that means you may be spending as much as $1,000 for a single productive lead. Be prepared to track down all potential leads you pay for immediately. Converting just one or two leads could mean that your PPL campaign is a success. At the end of the day, you still need to invest in maintaining and enhancing your brand – PPL can’t do that, it can just bring clients to your door. However, if you can afford it, diversification of lead gen strategies is highly effective – and PPL certainly deserves a seat at the table.
At Online Legal Marketing, we work with lawyers and law firms to create targeted programs that generate quality leads on a campaign basis. And, your leads are your leads–they’re not sent to multiple attorneys at the same time. Online Legal Marketing also offers exclusive campaigns–give us a call at 1-866-634-9232 for more info on how we can help get the leads you’re looking for.