Your Guide on How to Get Clients as a Criminal Defense Attorney


Nov 7, 2021


17 min read

Stepping into the world of marketing as a criminal defense attorney without doing any homework can drag your ROI to zero. Ultimately, you will not succeed in attracting even a single client! The market of criminal defense attorneys has become very saturated. According to Statista, the legal services industry in the USA generated a revenue of $262 billion in 2013. number was expected to grow and reach $350 billion by 2021. According to research made in 2021, around 1.15 million employees were working in the legal sector in the United States. The growing number of lawyers in criminal defense law firms in the USA does not align with the number of existing clients. Therefore, lawyers have fought for the same client base for many years. Criminal-Defense-Attorney Source: Pexels So, if you are struggling to market your law firm seo your services as a criminal defense attorney because of high competition, then you have come to the right place. This blog post will act as a guide that helps you find ways to gain more clients for your criminal defense or law firm.

Digital Marketing and Acquiring New Clients

Gone are those days when brochures, pamphlets, hoardings, and local TV ads were enough to get clients as we have moved to the digital era. Today, an average social media user spends 145 minutes on various social media platforms daily. Digital marketing opens new opportunities for criminal defense lawyers to market their services economically. From connecting with the customers and increasing visibility to leveling the playing field with big players and getting real-time results, criminal defense marketing offers many benefits on the digital platform. Criminal-Defense-Attorney Source: Pexels

Some Key Industry Insights:

  • More than 28% of clients find lawyers through directories
  • 31% of clients find lawyers through a referral from other lawyers
  • 96% of the prospects looking for legal advice use Google Search to find a solution.
What do these figures mean? If you implement criminal defense and a comprehensive marketing strategy, you can grab the attention of a notable percentage of criminal defense clients now. You can connect with them through various marketing channels.

The Correct Formula for Acquiring Clients as a Criminal Defense Attorney

Become Easily Accessible

You can never get new clients if no one can find you online. You must always be present where your potential client is looking for attorneys and information about their case. Some of the places where a client can look for a lawyer are;
  • Google Map pack
  • At the top of the page of Google
  • In Google organic search results
  • Law firm directories like Yelp
  • Youtube
So, marketing for criminal defense lawyers shouldn't mean focusing on only Google Search results. Clients use many other platforms to find lawyers; hence, you have to consider them, especially if you are a criminal law firm trying to add new clients to your list.

Your Digital Office: The Website's Role in Criminal Defense Practice

In the complex digital ecosystem, your website is your online office space where potential clients first encounter your legal expertise. For a criminal defense attorney, this is not merely a platform to list qualifications and case victories; it's a haven where troubled individuals seek guidance and assurance of legal representation. Your website is the initial point of contact, setting the stage for everything that follows.

Crafting a Client-Centric Experience

An effective criminal defense website is a harmonious blend of legal acumen, user-friendly design, and emotional engagement. It's not just about a visually appealing layout; it's about creating an environment that immediately communicates trustworthiness and competence. The speed, responsiveness, and ease of navigation aren't just technical details; they reflect your commitment to client service.

Showcasing Your Defense Expertise

Your website should go beyond the basics of a digital resume; it should be a dynamic portfolio of your criminal defense practice. Each area of expertise, from DUIs to white-collar crimes, should be detailed with legal rigor and compassionate understanding. Use anonymized case studies to demonstrate your skill in navigating the justice system, but always respect client confidentiality. Criminal defense services should be framed as life-changing interventions, not legal procedures.

Building Trust Through Client Stories

Incorporating testimonials is more than a marketing strategy; it's a way to build credibility through the voices of those you've helped. These aren't just endorsements; they are narratives of lives changed, charges dropped, and families reunited. Each testimonial adds a layer to your professional reputation, reinforcing your skills and ethical standards. Authenticity is crucial; insincere or fabricated testimonials can be damaging.

The Final Pitch: Your Call to Action

Every effective website has a compelling call to action (CTA), and in criminal defense, this CTA is your final pitch to the prospective client. It's your concluding argument, urging them to take the decisive step, whether scheduling a consultation or downloading a free legal guide. Craft this CTA with the same meticulous care you'd give to a closing statement in court. Make it compelling, urgent, and above all, genuine.

Adapting to the Digital Evolution

The digital world is constantly in flux, and your website should adapt accordingly. Regular updates, ongoing SEO efforts, and performance tracking aren't just maintenance tasks but opportunities for refinement and growth. Your website is more than a static marketing asset; it reflects your dedication to legal excellence.

Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising: The Fast Track to Client Acquisition for Criminal Defense Lawyers

In the high-stakes world of criminal defense, time is often of the essence. While organic growth through SEO and content marketing is valuable, it's a long-term game. For lawyers seeking immediate visibility and quick client acquisition, Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising offers a compelling solution. This digital marketing strategy allows you to place ads in search engine results and other platforms, charging you only when someone clicks on your ad. Here's how PPC can be a game-changer for criminal defense attorneys.

The Speed Advantage: Immediate Visibility

One of PPC's most significant benefits is its immediate visibility. Once your campaign is live, your ads appear in relevant search results almost instantly. This is particularly beneficial in criminal defense, where individuals often require immediate legal assistance. Your ad could be the first thing someone sees when they search for terms like "urgent legal help" or "emergency criminal lawyer."

Targeting Precision: Hitting the Bullseye

PPC allows for highly targeted advertising, enabling you to reach your Ideal Client Profile (ICP) with remarkable precision. You can set parameters based on location, age, search behavior, and even the time of day. For example, if your law practice specializes in DUI cases, you can target searches during late-night hours when such incidents are more likely to happen.

Budget Control: Spend Wisely

One of the advantages of PPC is the control it offers over your advertising budget. You can set daily or monthly spending limits, ensuring you never exceed your allocated budget. This makes PPC scalable, allowing you to start small and increase your investment as you see results. It's a flexible approach that can adapt to the financial realities of your practice.

Ad Creativity: Make Your Case

PPC ads give you a limited space to make an impact, so creativity is key. Your ad copy should be compelling and action-oriented, urging the viewer to take immediate steps, such as calling your office or visiting your website. Consider your ad as your opening statement to a potential client; it should grab attention, establish credibility, and provoke action.

Conversion Tracking: ROI in Real-Time

One of the most compelling features of PPC is its trackability. You can monitor how many clicks your ad receives, how many clicks lead to inquiries or consultations, and ultimately, how many convert into clients. This real-time data allows you to measure your Return on Investment (ROI) accurately and adjust your strategies for maximum effectiveness.

Landing Page Optimization: The Final Verdict

The journey doesn't end when someone clicks on your ad; it's just the beginning. The landing page to which your ad directs potential clients is crucial. It should be optimized for conversions, featuring compelling content, clear calls-to-action, and easy navigation. After all, the ultimate goal is not just to attract clicks on Google ads but to convert those clicks into consultations and, eventually, client relationships.

Identifying Your Ideal Client Profile (ICP): The Cornerstone of a Criminal Defense Practice

In criminal defense, understanding your Ideal Client Profile (ICP) is not just a marketing exercise; it's a foundational element that shapes your practice, your approach, and your reputation. While it may seem that anyone facing criminal charges could be a potential criminal law client, honing in on your ICP allows you to focus your resources, tailor your services, and ultimately, achieve better outcomes. It's about knowing who you can represent and who you should represent for mutual success.

The Demographics: Beyond the Obvious

When defining your ICP, it's easy to start with basic demographics like age, gender, and location. However, the nuances often go deeper in the marketing for criminal defense attorneys. Are your ideal client's individuals facing first-time charges or those with prior convictions? Are they more likely to be involved in crimes like DUIs, drug offenses, or white-collar crimes? Understanding these subtleties can help you effectively tailor your marketing messages and legal services.

The Psychographics: Understanding Mindsets

While demographics give you a surface-level understanding, psychographics delve into your ideal clients' mindset, behavior, and emotional state. Are they likely to be highly anxious individuals seeking reassurance? Are they looking for a fighter who will challenge every aspect of the prosecution's case? Or do they need a legal consultant who can guide them through the complexities of the legal system? Understanding these psychological aspects can help you communicate more effectively with prospective clients and build stronger attorney-client relationships.

The Legal Needs: Specialization Matters

The legal needs of the criminal defense industry are vast, from bail hearings to plea negotiations to trials. Your ICP should align with your areas of expertise and the services you are most equipped to offer. If your strength lies in courtroom advocacy, your ideal client may be someone facing serious charges that are likely to go to trial. Clients looking for plea deals might be your target if you excel in negotiation. Specializing lets you become an expert in specific practice areas first, making you more attractive to clients facing those issues.

The Financial Aspect: Aligning Budgets and Expectations

Legal services come at a cost, and aligning your pricing strategy with your ICP's financial capabilities is crucial. Are your ideal clients individuals who can afford premium legal services, or are they more budget-conscious? This doesn't mean compromising on your fees but rather offering flexible payment options or tiered service packages that cater to different financial situations.

The Channels of Acquisition: Where Do They Seek Help?

Understanding where your ideal clients go for information or assistance can guide your marketing efforts. Are they more likely to seek referrals from friends and family, or would they rely on online reviews and testimonials? Do they frequent specific online forums or social media platforms? Knowing this can help you focus your marketing resources more effectively.

Continuous Refinement: The ICP is Not Set in Stone

Your Ideal Client Profile is not a static concept; it's a dynamic framework that should evolve as your practice grows and you gather more data. Regularly revisiting and refining your ICP can provide fresh insights and help you adapt to changing market conditions.

Getting more clients using the power of SEO

You are entirely invisible to your clients if you are unavailable on the first two pages of their search results. But since everyone is fighting for that spot, here are some ways you can use the power of SEO to get more clients;
  • Use the mix of best keywords and do proper keyword research
  • Try to run paid ads on the first page of Google
  • Start working on optimizing your website for local searches
  • Use organic SEO

The SEO Chess Game

It's a complex game of chess where every move counts. Imagine a potential client typing "best criminal defense attorney near me" into Google. You've already lost the game if your name doesn't appear on the first page, let alone the first two. SEO is not just about keywords; it's about understanding the client's journey, from ignorance to enlightenment, and positioning yourself as the guiding light. Paid ads,local search optimization, and organic SEO are not just tools; they are weapons in your arsenal to conquer the digital battleground.

The Power of Reviews and Online Reputation

In the legal world, your reputation precedes you; in the digital age, reviews are your reputation. A single review can either elevate you to the status of a legal luminary or relegate you to obscurity. It's not just about collecting five-star reviews; it's about managing your online persona with the same diligence you would manage your courtroom demeanor. Encourage satisfied clients to share their experiences with positive reviews and address negative reviews with grace and professionalism. Remember, in the digital realm, perception is reality.

The Art of Content Creation

Content is not just king; it's the kingdom itself. In a world drowning in information, quality content is your lifeboat. It's not about churning out articles and blog posts; it's about crafting narratives that resonate with your potential clients. A well-written piece can serve as both a consultant and a confidant, offering valuable legal advice and establishing an emotional connection. The key is to be genuinely helpful. When you offer real value, you don't just get clients; you earn ambassadors for your brand.

Getting more clients through content

The next way to attract more clients is publishing and distributing value-added content. The best way to attract clients is to offer them the information they seek. Always remember; the more helpful you are to the potential clients, the more chances you will have to acquire them.
  • Make a content calendar and follow it.
  • Hire freelancers and increase the amount of content produced and published
  • Use guest posting and let the world know your expertise
  • Optimize the content as per the latest SEO techniques
  • Keep an eye on search engine algorithms to get the best results through content.
Criminal-Defense-Attorney Source: Pexels

Getting more clients through the website

Marketing for criminal defense lawyers on the digital platform is nothing without an enticing, seamless, and responsive website. The website of a criminal defense lawyer is the first official interaction of the potential client with the lawyer, and you should use this first point of contact well to turn website visitors into clients.
  • Mention all the services you are offering to them.
  • Take care of the speed, responsiveness, and seamlessness of the website.
  • Use your website to give a reason for the visitors to stay.
  • Hire a third-party website designing company to get the best results.
  • Never forget to include testimonials on your website.

Mastering Local SEO: The Unsung Hero of Criminal Defense Marketing

In the competitive landscape of criminal defense law, standing out in your local community is not just an advantage; it's a necessity. Local SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is often the unsung hero in this endeavor, a powerful tool that can significantly impact your visibility, credibility, and client acquisition. Unlike general SEO, which aims to improve your online presence nationally or globally, local SEO focuses on optimizing your digital footprint within your specific geographic area. Here's why and how it's crucial for criminal defense lawyers.

The Importance of "Near Me" Searches

Individuals are more likely to search for immediate, local assistance in moments of crisis, such as an arrest or criminal charge. Phrases like "criminal defense lawyer near me" or "best DUI attorney in [City Name]" are common queries. Local SEO ensures that your practice appears in these critical searches, positioning you as a convenient and accessible solution.

Google My Business: Your Virtual Business Card

One of the cornerstones of local SEO is an optimized Google My Business (GMB) profile. This serves as your virtual business card, displaying essential information like your office location, hours of operation, and client reviews. An updated and verified GMB profile boosts your local search rankings and enhances your credibility. Ensure to include accurate details, high-quality images of your office, and prompt responses to client reviews to maximize its effectiveness.

Local Keywords: Speak the Local Language

Incorporating local keywords into your website content, meta descriptions, and titles is a subtle yet effective local SEO strategy. Phrases that include your city or neighborhood improve your local search results and rankings and resonate more with local clients. It's not just about saying you're a "criminal defense lawyer"; it's about being a "criminal defense lawyer in [Your City]."

Local Citations: Consistency is Key

A local citation is any online mention of your law firm's name, address, and phone number. These can appear in local business directories, websites, and social platforms. Consistency in these citations is crucial for local SEO. Any discrepancies in information can confuse search engines and lower your ranking. Make sure your details are uniform across all platforms.

Getting more clients through reviews

In addition to working on different criminal defense advertising strategies, you should also build an excellent online reputation through reviews. Reviews matter more than what they mean for other firms when it comes to legal services.
  • Always ask your client to post reviews.
  • Start using reviews in the Google My Business listing.
  • Consider platforms like Yelp while working on reviews.
  • Don't worry about a couple of bad reviews, as there is no way you can maintain a 100% customer satisfaction rate.
Marketing for a criminal defense lawyer can be challenging. Still, by using the right digital marketing tools and working with experts, you can beat even the tough competition of the criminal attorney market. Work on all the aspects of digital marketing for criminal lawyers mentioned in this blog post, and keep increasing your client base.

The Social Media Courtroom: A New Arena for Criminal Defense Lawyers

In today's digital age, social media platforms have evolved into more than just spaces for social interaction; they've become influential arenas where public opinion is shaped and reputations are made or broken. For a criminal defense attorney, social media is not just another channel for self-promotion; it's a modern-day courtroom where you can advocate, educate, and connect. It's a platform where you can present your "case" to more criminal defense clients to the "jury" of public opinion, long before you enter a real courtroom.

The Strategy: Beyond Likes and Shares

Social media marketing for criminal defense lawyers is not about accumulating likes, shares, or followers; it's about building a community of informed and engaged citizens. It's not about posting glossy photos or catchy slogans; it's about sharing valuable content that educates your audience about their legal rights, the criminal justice system, and the role of a defense attorney. Every post, tweet, or video should serve a purpose, whether to inform, provoke thought, or offer a glimpse into your day-to-day work.

The Ethics of Social Media Engagement

Navigating the social media landscape requires strategic acumen and ethical vigilance. Confidentiality is the cornerstone of legal practice and must be maintained scrupulously, even in open social media forums. Discussing specific cases, sharing privileged information, or making promises of certain outcomes can tarnish your reputation and lead to professional repercussions. Your social media conduct should be an extension of your professional ethics.

The Power of Storytelling

One of the most potent tools in your social media arsenal is storytelling. Sharing anonymized success stories or thought-provoking legal scenarios can captivate your audience and foster engagement. These narratives can humanize you, showcasing your legal expertise and your compassion and commitment to justice. Remember, people relate to stories, not statutes. Use storytelling to bridge the gap between the legalese and the layman.

Leveraging Different Platforms

Not all social media platforms are created equal, and each has unique strengths and target audience or demographics. LinkedIn might be ideal for networking with other professionals and sharing long-form articles, while Twitter could be effective for quick updates and real-time engagement. With its visual focus, Instagram can be used to showcase your law firm's marketing culture or share infographics that simplify complex legal concepts. Diversifying your social media portfolio can help you reach different segments of your target audience.

Measuring Impact and ROI

In the realm of social media marketing, analytics are your best friend. Tracking engagement rates, click-throughs, and conversions can offer valuable insights into what's working and what needs improvement. But remember, the return on investment (ROI) in social media marketing is not always immediate or quantifiable. Sometimes, the real ROI is in the relationships you build, the trust you earn, and the reputation you uphold.


Digital marketing has become essential in all kinds of businesses. At Saffron Edge, we offer tailor-made solutions that enable you to cater to diverse marketing needs for your family and law firm websites. We support our clients with extensive advertising channels through which their law firm's website can build customer relationships, brand identity, and engagement. We help them outsmart their competitors by offering expertise that leads to client and revenue growth. To know more, give us a call today!