Who do you trust more?
or your friend Julio?
This article explains why search engine traffic (“SEO”) and Pay Per Click (“PPC”) are not completely worthless, just in fact worth LESS than social media driven traffic.
How much would you pay to have someone visit your website? Most of you would reply, “nothing.” But there is actually a market for visitors. Through google adwords lawyers and other professionals are buying visitors ever minute of every day. This is also known as PPC. I ran a search to see how much the going rate is for a few types of law.
How about for a personal injury attorney? If a personal injury attorney wants their website to come up when somebody types “automobile accident lawyers” they have to pay $30.44 PER CLICK- and there is a TON of competition. To get on the first page with SEO it would likely cost even more because the top personal injury firms are literally throwing money at search terms to bring in more business.
How many clicks does it take for them to actually get a client? From my interviewing various firms we will use the number 1,000. It takes 1,000 visitors to a particular law firm site through SEO and PPC to sign up a client. So basically, to use PPC it costs the average personal injury firm $30,440 to bring in a single client through PPC advertising.
Well here is the crazy part- Mesothelioma (the type of cancer caused by exposure to asbestos) is a search term worth $400 PER CLICK. At the same close rate, this costs a law firm $400,000 to sign up ONE new client. That is some crazy competition driving the prices up- and no guarantee that the case will be successful.
I generate free clicks from social media sites like Twitter. I am going to explain why the traffic is BETTER, and how even busy attorneys can afford to spend time blogging. You see, the social media generated traffic is better for two reasons: (1) the individuals are interested in the subject matter of the title, or they wouldn’t have clicked on it. (2) they click on the link with a higher level of trust because they know the author of the article, or at least the reputation of the individual sharing the link.
Who do you trust for quality articles? An algorithm, or the friend you just got done talking football or cooking with?
I could write an article about Mesothelioma if I like, and tweet it out to drive traffic. In fact, just by placing the term in my headline, I can get some of that sweet $400 per click traffic at a significantly lower price. It isn’t actually FREE, it does require my time to write an article, but how long does it take to write a blog post? Not long.
Here is just one more way that blogging is worth an attorney’s time. Say the attorney bills out at $250 per hour, and they generate traffic somewhere in the range of 100 unique visitors to each blog post, and assume the blog post takes 1 hour to write. Check the PPC pricing. How much would it cost to generate related traffic on the open market? If the price is higher than $2.50 per click, than it is a good use of the attorney’s time to blog for an hour each week, or even every day. Here is the PPC for just a few search terms according to adwords:
tax attorney $26.20 per click
malpractice lawyers $17.04 per click
bankruptcy lawyer $8.46 per click
But keep in mind, this is ASSUMING that the PPC visitors are the same as the visitors from social media sites like Twitter. They aren’t- the clicks from social media sites are MORE valuable. To explain this, lets take a quick look at the funnel. For those that have been to my Social Media Boot Camp, you have heard all about the funnel.
CLICKS- Those people who have seen your site in the search click on it, and in an instant decide to stay on your site or to leave.
SITE VISITORS- Those who stay for more than 5 seconds become visitors. Keep in mind that only a small fraction of people who see your site in their search will actually click on it, and a small percentage of those will actually read your site.
ACTION- For my site about 1 in ever 120 visitors takes an action. Either they grab a free chapter of my book, sign up for my free conference call, or call me on the phone. For most law firm websites, the conversion rates are even lower- because they don’t have a site designed to convert, they have a site designed to generate traffic. (Read more about this at Street Fight Between SEO and Bloggers) They have it all backwards- why spend so much time, energy, and money on traffic – when you can’t convert the visitors into action takers?
THE SOCIAL MEDIA ADVANTAGE
The big advantage for social media clicks is that they come referred with some serious street cred. This wasn’t an algorithm or some attorney’s credit card that put my link in your face- it was likely one of your peers. In a few moments when I finish writing this post I will blast it out to 36,000 Twitter followers, about 800 Facebook friends, and my LinkedIn people. This means that nearly 100% of those who click on my site through social media, are REAL visitors. They know me, or at least have some level of familiarity with me. I get to skip a couple of steps- my CLICKS enter the funnel as qualified visitors.
If you want to keep paying thousands of dollars for random clicks from complete strangers, be my guest- but why not just take the time to share your knowledge of accidents, mesothelioma law, or tax law through social media and blogging. You will get a higher return on investment, plus you can tell all your hipster friends that you are busting out some mad tweets to bring in business.
Join the conversation! We would love to have you join us on our call this coming Friday at 10:00 AM EST entitled, “Twitter Etiquette: Play Nice, Make Money”.
Click HERE to sign up for the next call.