Bing Ads: Why Your Law Firm Should Use Them

Bing Ads for lawyers

Chris Dreyer

Chris Dreyer, President and Founder of AttorneyRankings.org

The author’s views are entirely his or her own and may not reflect the views of Cirlce of Legal Trust.

With roughly 20% market share[1] in the search arena, Bing is nothing to scoff at.  Google is the market leader which makes their ads very effective but also very expensive.  Lawyers should take a holistic approach to their paid ad strategy and promote their services on Bing’s platform as well.  Here are some good reasons why:

An Easy Transition

Bing has a compelling interest in getting people to use its ad platform so Microsoft has made it easy to import AdWords campaigns[2] (among other platforms) over to Bing.  Importing campaigns can save a ton of time but there are some important considerations.

  • Character limits for ad text, titles, URLs, and keywords are not the same between Bing and Google
  • There may be keywords allowed in AdWords but not allowed on Bing’s platform and vis versa
  • There are also differences among site link extensions, IP exclusions, and volume of keywords per account

Make sure all of the characteristics of your campaign will fit into Bing’s platform.  Once you know everything will match up, importing things over is pretty simple and will save a lot of time.

Diversify Lead Generation

Lawyers should take a holistic approach to their web marketing and diversify their reach.  Dumping all of your time, money, and/or effort into one channel is seldom a good idea.  Attorneys often serve a diverse client base so having a presence on many different platforms is a good idea.

Bing can help lawyers reach another segment of people loyal to that brand for search.  Microsoft integrates the search engine into a lot of its other products.  For example roughly 87% of Bing users come from Internet Explorer[3] and the demographic that uses it tends to be older (35+).

The more important thing to remember is that Google is not the only game in town.  Although they dominate in search, there are dozens of other search engines and Bing does have a sizable chunk of the market.

Bing is also an additional targeted lead source which is hard to come by.  Click through rates on ads in search are uncharacteristically high for interruptive advertising models.  That is because shoppers use search engines as tools to find goods and services.  By contrast, display ads on websites tend to have lower click through rates because consumers are not on a site expecting to see that information.

A Cost Effective Alternative

In highly competitive fields (the legal industry included) CPC prices can get expensive real quick.  In some locations we have seen CPC numbers in excess of $100 per click on Google’s platform.  The exact same campaign in Bing may be one fourth of that cost because competition is reduced.

Data developed into an infographic by nowsource.com and presented by Wordstream[4] illustrates the most expensive keywords in AdWords (note that “attorney” made the list at number 4).


Lawyers can make their budgets go a little further on Bing for some of the same keyword phrases.  At the very least Bing can be used as a test platform to determine how well a particular search campaign may work before investing more into Google.

Mobile is Growing Quickly

Mobile clicks on Bing ads have grown 166% year over year[5].  Mobile in general is also exploding in use with the number of internet connected mobile devices now outpacing that of traditional desktop computers.  Microsoft continues to improve the mobile experience[6] with innovative features for users.
Below are some quotes from notable industry marketers on Bing’s mobile prowess and from PPCHero.com.

“Nearly across the board we are seeing greater efficiencies in both smartphone and tablet advertising for the Yahoo Bing Network,when compared to Google.” – Roger Barnette, President of IgnitionOne

“Bing Ads mobile audience represents 34% of the mobile search market.”

“The Yahoo Bing Network is 29% of the search marketplace, and 1/3 of all searches in the US are done on Bing.”

The Female Market

Data from Nielson[7] suggests that women are the ones who control purchase decisions (even when the men are writing the checks).  Ironically information from the Yahoo/Bing network[8] shows that the user base for the search engine leans slightly more toward females than males.  Lawyers advertising on Bing can potentially get more bang for their buck by being more prevalent to the female market.

More Reasons Lawyers Should Bet on Bing

In addition to the compelling reasons above, there are some others that make Bing an appealing platform to try:

  • More control at the adgroup and campaign level: Bing offers some more control at a granular level compared with AdWords. Many of Google’s settings are made at the campaign level which makes it more difficult to change things like targeting and budgets from adgroup to adgroup within the same campaign.  Bing allows for changes to things like scheduling, location and language at the adgroup level without creating a new campaign.
  • Better device targeting: Enhanced campaigns on Google are designed to be dynamic and target all devices.  You can tailor your bids on mobile but if you want to opt out of desktop completely, that option is not available.  Bing has more flexible device targeting options[9] in their interface.
  • More robust social extensions: Google has social extensions for Google Plus but beyond that, there is much to be desired.  Bing has functionality to display number of Twitter followers (which is not that much better but of the two choices, Twitter may be a better one to have connected to your ad). By being present on both networks, lawyers can get social extensions related to Twitter and Google Plus.

Chris Dreyer is the president and founder of Attorney Rankings, an Internet marketing agency specifically for law firms. Learn more about Attorney Rankings at AttorneyRankings.org.

Sources:

[1] http://searchengineland.com/bing-reaches-20-percent-search-milestone-in-us-market-218574

[2] http://advertise.bingads.microsoft.com/en-us/help-topic/how-to/51050/how-to-import-a-campaign-from-adwords-or-other-programs

[3] http://www.aborg.com/2014/08/google-vs-bing-which-one-are-your-customers-using/

[4] http://www.wordstream.com/articles/most-expensive-keywords

[5] http://www.ppchero.com/25-reasons-to-use-bing-ads-now/

[6] http://searchengineland.com/bing-image-search-adds-bubbles-to-improve-the-mobile-search-experience-219034

[7] http://www.nielsen.com/us/en/insights/news/2013/u-s-women-control-the-purse-strings.html

[8] http://searchenginewatch.com/sew/how-to/2378009/yahoo-bing-network-audience-stats-that-might-surprise-you

[9] http://advertise.bingads.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/28855/changes-to-targeting-mobile-devices-coming-to-bing-ads-in-march-2015

Posts by Chris Dreyer

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