People often ask me what kind of marketing I do for my dojo.
“Do you drop flyers on windshields?”
“I hear demonstrations are a great way to get new students, do you do that?”
“What about yellow pages, do use them?”
The answer is a resounding no. None of the above.
Have I used these types of things? Sure, I’ve tried all kinds of things and I’ve paid attention to what works and what doesn’t. And at the end of the day I focus on those things that DO work, and let others do the things that don’t.
This is KEY to having a successful full time dojo.
KILLER TIP: In fact I track not only what marketing sources get most students, but know which sources produce the longest serving students and focus on those methods.
And you know I’m probably the world’s laziest marketer. In fact my marketing is sometimes downright pathetic, yet my dojo continues to grow from strength to strength.
So what do I do?
Well I have 4 rules when it comes to marketing:
1) I like it to be inexpensive, free if possible.
2) I like other people to do the work for me.
3) I don’t like to put in too much continued effort – I like to set things up once and let them take care of themselves.
4) It’s got to get good results.
So recently when I won the WEKAF Stickfighting World Championship I thought, how can I use this in my marketing to promote my school?
Well here’s what I did:
1) I wrote a short press release (30 minutes work)
2) I sent it to 3 local papers
3) The editor of the biggest of the three papers called me for an interview (20 minutes) and I sent him a photo
3) The story ran in this morning’s paper and also on their web site.
So this fits my 4 criteria above:
1) It was free to do
2) The editor did most of the work
3) The article is now out there in today’s paper, and also on The Press Enterprise web site, which can be linked to forever
4) Past experience tells me that this article will get in front of 10’s of thousands of people, create word of mouth and great exposure for our dojo.
If you’d like to read the article here it is…
Now is this the only way I market?
No of course not.
You’ve got to have multiple streams that bring you traffic and make your phone ring consistently. But this is one example of an excellent way to get exposure for you and your school. I hope you can use it as an example for yours – unless you’re one of my competitors… =)