How to Target Your Ideal Legal Clients With Keyword Research
A well-produced video is a great thing to have, but it doesn’t mean a thing if potential clients can’t find it. It’s this simple: a difficult-to-find video won’t get played, and it won’t deliver your message.
Furthermore, even if your video content is getting views, is it driving viewers to contact and hire you? The secret isn’t just to find any old consumer to deliver your message to; you have to target the right consumer.
One way to ensure that your video content is tailored for success is to conduct keyword research and shape your content to reflect what potential clients are searching for.
By definition, keyword research is a practice used to find and research actual search terms that people enter into search engines. Search engine optimization professionals research keywords, which they use to achieve better rankings in search engines.
The essential goal of keyword research is to understand what people are searching for and reflect those terms in your content to drive qualified, converting traffic to your website. If correctly researched, targeted, and implemented, keyword research can ensure that your firm’s message is served up to potential clients when they are searching for services in your practice area. Here’s how to do it:
Select a Keyword Research Tool
There are a myriad of tools on the market that will get the job done. Google AdWords Keyword Planner, Keyword Researcher Pro, Google Trends (great for seasonal keywords), and more all offer keyword research capabilities. As Google is the foremost search engine authority, we recommend that you start with AdWords.
Create a “Seed” List
Brainstorm and populate an initial keyword list. Then, input the list into your keyword research tool to expand upon these initial keyword “seeds”.
The key here is to think of questions that your ideal clients ask and create a list of terms you believe they are searching for. Keep in mind, your seed list should not focus on terms that you (an industry professional) would use, these should be the terms that your audience uses.
Once you’ve created an initial list, choose terms (seeds) that are the most relevant to your area of practice. This will point your keyword search in the right direction.
Run Your Keyword Research
Depending on your target audience, you generally want to target your research based on city, state, or region.
Depending on your tool, you will need to export your data to an Excel file. From there, the keyword refinement process begins…
Refine Your Keyword Selections
Optimally, you want to find terms that are high in search volume, low in competition, and highly relevant to your practice area. In highly competitive industries like the legal space, general searches (i.e. “personal injury attorney” or “bankruptcy attorney”) offer tremendous search volumes but also astronomic competition levels.
A high level of competition means a low probability of ranking for these terms. For the strategic law firm, these are generally terms to avoid competing for.
What you can do, however, is target long-tail search terms to refine and target your keyword search. Long-tail keywords are three word or more keyword phrases which are extremely specific to your practice area and target audience. An example of a long-tail search could be, “How do I find a personal injury attorney in Miami?”
Although long-tail terms generally have a lower search volume they also have less competition, allowing your content to rank where highly qualified potential clients can find it.
For example, a “personal injury attorney” search could be for a range of things: somebody looking for career advice, a student researching a project, someone wondering what a personal injury attorney does, etc.
An individual searching “how do I find a personal injury attorney in Miami” is much more likely to be a qualified lead and potential client for your firm.
Use Keywords in Your Content
Create video, blog, and other types of content that include your selected keyword phrases. By implementing this data-driven approach, you are taking the guesswork out of the content that you create. You know what the search volumes are for key terms and phrases, and you’ve targeted the ones that will provide the most benefit.
By strategically targeting long-tail keyword searches relating to your practice, you enhance your ability create and serve relevant content that your target audience is searching for.
We implemented this strategy for our client, Payer & Associates, and the results are already apparent. After creating FAQ and educational content targeting long-tail keyword searches, here’s what happened after just one month:
Payer & Associates ranks for the top three listings under that search string, and it’s targeted to the exact audience that is most likely to become a Payer & Associates client.
To put it another, if you cast a wide net you might catch a few fish. If you change your tackle to chase a certain kind of fish, then you’re much more likely to land exactly what you’re looking for.
And, in the first two months after implementing this data-driven organic strategy, Payer & Associates’ organic search traffic increased a whopping 54%.
Keyword research shouldn’t be viewed as an optional advantage or secret strategy, it’s an absolute requirement to stay relevant in today’s competitive landscape. If you aren’t taking advantage of this tactic rest assured, your competitors are.
Simply having content isn’t enough, you have to ensure that your content is served to potential clients. By using keyword research data to effectively target your digital content strategy, you will do just that.
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