December 5

Marketing For Martial Arts


Hi folks its been a while since my last post but here are the brief reasons: I am not teaching any more, and in addition I am not well. I have been diagnosed with severe asthma that is not under control. Its a life changing illness but I will get though it.

However today I have decided to come out of writing retirement and offer some much needed marketing advice for martial arts and self defence clubs. The moral to this story is:


The modern world is changing and so is the web, I know this because I keep an active check on the workings of google and internet marketing and have spent a lot of time and money learning how to get ‘ranked’ on google for a web site. This post WILL help you but only if you take action. Information without action is useless!

What are customers doing?

OK you need to look at things from a customers point of view. To illustrate this I will let you into a secret. When I landed a BBC Radio 2 interview I did so deliberately. To do this I put myself in the mind of the person a looking for interviews ie. the researcher. That’s why I purchased the domain name I was focused on getting ranked for the phrase “SELF DEFENCE EXPERTS” . The result was that it worked.

Google it now and you will see I should come on the front page! Yes this has nothing to do with how hard I hit or how clever I am. It comes from hard work and knowledge.

You need to start putting yourself in the position of the customer, the parent and the student. This means developing what is called an ‘in bound marketing’ campaign.

How I got a interview with a hight street giant!

Waterstones is a huge bookshop chain in the uk and I got invited to go down to their London HQ for an interview of sorts. So off I trotted down to their HQ in good old London. Now let me be clear their staff are web experts and have even worked at Amazon and have degrees coming out of their backsides. However their you tube and other social media channels are terrible, the average video they put out gets less than 100 views (at time of writing they have had a huge hit with a comedy video but still other videos are terrible for a large company).

Now what I will say is that the interview didn’t go according to my plans but I learned more in an hour than I could have done in years on university training. I learned who they go to for their training and I figured out why they will not succeed in their on line endeavours. Its got nothing to do with their abilities on line but has everything to do with not understanding how customers use the web and the power of social media. No offence to their media department but even despite the free advice I offered they failed to listen and are continuing on the path they have set themselves.

Whilst the reasons behind this are far too complex to go into here Ill say this if a company with high street stores can only get 100 or so views per video they release on line I would argue that they need to go to others for advice and they don’t have the answers!

However whats important is how I got the interview in the first place.

I asked!

This may be too simple for some to believe but I made a few phone calls and I got invited down to the head office of Waterstones to discuss social media. Yep little old me with zero qualifications.


That is my biggest motto. I live by it and I should write a book about it, but ultimately thats how I got to travel to London for an interview that I created. Sure it didnt lead anywhere but I learned a lot from the experience.

So what’s this got to do with you?

Well if you are reading this then you have come via my online audience or googled the phrase ‘martial arts marketing’, and that in other words is asking and that’s exactly the way the web works. People ask questions and the web delivers the answer. So you need to make sure that you are the answer to the question the are asking.

I asked for an interview with waterstones and I got it. A researcher asked google for self defence experts and found me and you need to make sure your club is found when people are looking for martial arts or self defence training in your area.

 People interested in martial arts go looking

This is the key. People who want martial arts go looking and where do they go? The web.

The end result is that if you havent got a web presence you cannot succeed or expect to get more clients. It really is that simple, Now the cornerstones of a good web presence is a website but trust me not all websites are the same. Just like a leaflet it needs to convert people into customers, however unlike a leaflet people got to your site via a search.

You need to understand a few things.

People go to google and search for martial arts clubs. You need to make sure you are found in that search and that your site converts visitors into leads. How do you do this? Well that is a long answer and not really the aim of this post. Instead you need to focus on a few key areas:



Google plus local for business

and a few others im not going to share!!!

You need to at least get these 3 sorted so they bring in clients but you need to be pro active and put out information. This means hard work to get ranked for the phrases that customers search for  and im guessing that will be “martial arts clubs in…….”.

There are a lot of different ways and tools to get ranked but if I told you them all I would be a bit daft for giving away my secrets but here is my ultimate tip.

Make a you tube video and title it by your key phrase if nothing else ie call your video

“Martial arts classes in …..” or whatever your research dictates is best. Then use the descriptions writing space to put a link in to your website in htttp: format. Exactly how your site reads in your browser for example and dont forget to tell people just what your club is about in that text box.

This really is the best tip I can give. It sounds too simple to be true but trust me it works. So get filming and do this guys and gals!



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