Bidding On The Competition’s Name

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If you are in an area where there are several other law firms, it can be tempting to do whatever it takes to beat the competition. Paid media is one of the most common resources marketers use to steal web traffic from a competitor in hopes of gaining a new client. Let’s say you’re X Law Firm but you see Y Law Firm’s ads everywhere. It feels like they are doing more than you, getting their name out there more often and now you are trying to figure out how to compete with their efforts. It’s possible and common to bid on another law firm’s name on Google. However, it is not a guaranteed recipe to gain more clients and see your return on investment.

Two hands holding a sign with the text "The Winner Is..." against a colorful, blurred background suggest the anticipation and excitement of bidding on the competition's name.

The problem with competitor campaigns is that they are costly for two reasons:

  1. Another law firm is already bidding on their own terms so you are automatically in a bidding war—kind of like bidding on eBay for a hot item.
  2. Because Y Law Firm’s terms are not on X Law Firm’s website (that would be odd, right?), it makes your quality score go down which makes bids go up.

Competitor campaigns do have their place and are effective. However, they typically don’t drive measurable revenue. Think about it, we are getting someone off of what they’re originally searching for—leaving Y’s web page to come to X’s web page. They will likely poke around, familiarize themselves with the brand but need some retargeting campaigns and social ads to follow them around to get them to come back. While you may not see the direct ROI immediately, over time competitor campaigns end up working when set up in conjunction with retargeting on both Google Display Network and Facebook.

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