Demographic targeting is one of the oldest PPC features. PPC platforms have allowed their users to split audiences using details like income, age, and gender ever since the internet advertising model pay-per-click was introduced in 1996.The introduction of Facebook Ads helped the feature mature to accommodate more information like job title, education, marital status, and more. But this post isn’t about FB ads – it’s about the new detailed demographic features in Google Ads and whether they’re useful for law firm PPC advertising.

Google Ads’ Detailed Demographic Targeting: Is It Useful for Law Firms?
(Pixabay / geralt)

What Are Detailed Demographics in Google Ads?

Detailed demographics are an upgrade to the existing demographics in Google Ads. It used to be that advertisers could target people based on age, gender and location on the platform. Now, with new detailed demographics, you can use additional data points to target an audience. The new detailed demographic targets are:

  • Marital Status
  • Home ownership
  • Education
  • Parental status

Let’s look at each feature in detail:

Marital Status

This is a big one for law firms. Being able to target by marital status means you could directly reach married individuals or those in a relationship. If your practice revolves around divorce, dissolution, and financial separation, targeting married people is a smart choice. With 40-50 percent of married couples in the US divorcing, you could generate tons of leads with this targeting option. Family lawyers can target those in a relationship with services like spouse immigration and perpetual agreement drafting.

Google Ads detailed demographics now let advertisers display ads to people who are:

  • Married
  • In a relationship
  • Single

Home Ownership

Are you an attorney who deals with landlord-tenant law? If so, you would love this new demographic-targeting feature. In Google Ads, you can now target:

  • Renters
  • Homeowners

And although it looks simple on paper – the number of renters and homeowners requiring legal services is vast. According to The New York Times report, nearly 31 percent of tenants couldn’t pay the rent in April last year. And the report predicted that the situation is only going to get worse. In cities like Detroit, Oakland, New York, and Chicago, tenant rights groups have been arranging strikes, demanding rent cancellation due to the ongoing job crisis amid the pandemic. This means there are opportunities to target renters facing a risk of evacuation, as well as landlords who want their money on time.

Education

Education lawyers have a lot to gain from this new demographic targeting option. They can promote services related to a wide range of matters, including gender discrimination, civil rights claims, student discipline, privacy breach, campus safety, and more. Beyond direct targeting, they can use a person’s educational status to observe other aspects of their lives – education can be an indicator of their income, lifestyle, and career seniority. While the Google Ads platform doesn’t let users target these data points directly, you might be able to gain valuable insights by evaluating the education demographics for campaign refinement.

The educational attainments that you can target under the new detailed demographics include:

  • Obtained Advanced Degree
  • Obtained Bachelor’s Degree
  • Current College Graduates
  • High School Graduates

Parental Status

Family and education lawyers might want to test the waters with parental status targeting. Searches like “birth injury lawyer” and “teen criminal defense lawyer” will align well with this new detailed demographic and bring in leads. The complete list of targets for parental status are as follows:

  • Parents of Teens: 13-17 years
  • Parents of Grade schoolers: 6-12 years
  • Parents of Preschoolers: 4-5 years
  • Parents of Toddlers: 1-3 years
  • Parents of Infants: 0-1 years

Parents are often the key decision-makers in their children’s lives. The fact that Google Ads allows you to target them (based on the age of the children) enables you to get in front of those who are most likely to click and check out your services.

How to Access Google Ads Demographics

You can access these and other demographic targeting features using the ‘Demographics’ tab inside Google Ads. After clicking the tab, you should be able to add demographics for age, gender, location, marital status, home ownership, education and parental status to your campaigns.

By the way, Google Ads also offers the option to target these audiences exclusively or place them in the ‘observation’ category to see how they respond to your ads and then adjust your bids for these people.

Moreover, you can also exclude one or multiple demographics from seeing your ads. For instance, you might want to remove people earning less than $2,000 monthly from your targeting if you are concerned that they won’t be able to pay your fees. But this depends on the type of legal services you provide and your perspective on client servicing.

Note: The parental status target can only be used for Video and Display campaigns. You won’t be able to use them for text ads campaigns.

For Powerful Results, Use Demographic Targeting with Other Elements

Demographic targeting is a potent force, but it shouldn’t be the end-all in your bid to achieve excellent results. If you’re building personas for your audience, you might not be able to categorize them into any specific demographic.

What you could do instead is create two campaigns: one targeting the personas you’ve built and another targeting the demographic you wish to reach. Then split test to see which campaign performs better. It’s best to steer clear from any preconceived ideas you have about what Google Ads targeting feature is best for your firm. The data you get will help you tighten up your targeting and learn more about your audiences. Audience knowledge is key to consistently generating good PPC results.

Need Help with Detailed Demographic Targeting?

If you’re unsure which demographics to target or how to access detailed demographics in Google Ads, get in touch with a PPC specialist at Webrageous. We specialize in pay per click management for personal injury attorneys, mass tort attorneys and more. Our experienced team can help you identify your targeting options as well as assist you in picking demographics that result in the most leads and conversions.