Advertising and promotions have changed quite a bit in the last decade and will be evolving going forward, as well. With a martial arts school, you have many ways to advertise to get new students. Whether it’s guerrilla marketing or a more traditional form of marketing, you’ll have to make sure your martial arts school marketing is done in a way that will work with this modern generation.
Here are 20 ways to promote your martial arts school, in no particular order. Some are quick and easy, while some are a bit grander. All should help boost your martial arts school’s exposure:
1) Write Articles : If anyone on your team is a great writer, try to compose something for a magazine, blog, or newspaper. Editors are always looking for great content written by experts in their fields. Make sure that the content you can provide them with makes sense for their publication and their target demographic.
2) Holiday Cards: Send these to your students for multiple reasons. First, the attention to care will be appreciated by your students. Second, many people put their Christmas cards on display at their homes or offices. If you can find one that’s attention grabbing, other people may just take notice of your school.
3) Charity Events: This is inherently good, even if no promotions come from it. That being said, a well-designed charity event can do both. Charity events are definitely a part of a comprehensive martial arts school marketing strategy that creates and sustains a long-term positive relationship with your community.
4) Contests: There are a ton of different contests you can run. From in-school contests, to potential student contests, the world is your oyster. Try something amongst your current students, to start. Referral campaigns that have a prize for the students who bring the most friends to class is a classic example.
5) Social Media Campaigns: Speaking of contests, what better way to spread said contest than through social media. It can be a great way to increase your following and, if done well, it’s a great marketing base to have at all times.
6) Hire Social Media Pros: If you have the budget for it, finding a great social media team to take over your promotions or train your own staff to do it in-house can be an incredibly high return on investment. Look for people who know what they’re doing: who make it a breeze to boost your online presence and to maximize your martial arts school marketing. Take a look at ChampionsWay’s Mr. Marketer service, for more on this.
7) Be a Speaker: Most martial arts masters have earned the title through many years of trials and tribulations. If your city has forums for public speaking, get on top of them. Whether it’s a TEDx , or even a coffee shop meet up, it’s a great way to get your school noticed, while speaking about the great benefits of martial arts for you health and mind.
8) Sponsorships: Find a relevant team, school, or group to sponsor. You’ll have to do a cost-benefit analysis, but this can make your school look really good in your community and boost your presence. You can couple this with your philanthropic efforts, by sponsoring kids overseas or helping less fortunate students get to competitions.
9) Business Cards: Business cards are just about as traditional as can be but here’s a guerrilla tactic: insert them into martial arts books at your local library. A quirky, odd, yet effective form of martial arts school marketing might just give you the leg up.
10) Be Aware of your Calendar: Halfway through each month, take a look at the following month’s events and happenings. Being proactive with your events will keep maximizing your martial arts school marketing potential.
11) Cross-Promotions: Team up with a local business to cross-promote each other, effectively combining your followings. Make sure you think about businesses that are complimentary with yours and make sense.
12) Trades: Finding businesses to trade with can be extremely rewarding. For example, you can trade a week’s worth of your classes for various products and services other companies offer. If your quality is high enough, you should be able to convert people into full-time students.
13) Stickers: This is another form of martial arts school marketing that is very guerrilla driven. Putting your stickers up on random parts of the city (without defacing or vandalizing anything)can be an effective way of boosting your community’s awareness, especially if they’re creative.
14) Blog: A blog can be somewhat time consuming but, with enough quality content, you can create a website that is a hub for martial arts people to look up tips, tricks, and thoughts on martial arts practice. With enough traffic, this can become a very good source of promotional awareness, along with boosting your SEO value.
15) After-School Program: This is a parent’s dream. If you have an after-school program, news should spread quick with your students’ friends’ parents, as it give them a safe place to go and be productive after school. This is a no-brainer if you have many young students.
16) Guest Days: Have one day in each month where a student can bring a guest. This creates an easy referral system where the potential student can experience your school along with someone they trust. An easy way to multiply the number of students you already have.
17) Guest Instructors: Having a guest instructor come in to teach can be an incredible way to get your students and your community excited, while also keeping things fresh. If your guest instructor has a following, you’ll be able to piggyback on their fan base to get your martial arts school out there. If you’ve made friends with other school owners around the country, there is also the option of guest appearances, while one of you is traveling. This can create lasting relationships with schools you aren’t competing with.
18) Host a Tournament: Not every school can pull this off but, if you can, do it. It’s an incredible martial arts school marketing strategy that will get your name out there quickly. If done well, you will turn a profit while getting an incredible amount of press.
19) Demonstrations: This is a tried and true method of martial arts school marketing and with good reason. You can get a lot of people very excited with a really great demonstration, which should help attract a lot of attention. Make sure you’re ready to convert passersby into potential students, by offering a tour, discount or free trial.
20) Birthday Parties: We’ve covered this in the past but it’s still worth the mention. Birthday parties help spread awareness of your school like wildfire and gives you a nice boost in revenue. Use it to your advantage.