You’ve probably heard all the buzz about social media.
But should your martial arts school even use it?
For starters, lets look at what social media is so we’re all on the same page.
What is Social Media?
Social media is word of mouth on digital steroids.
Social media describes content that is posted by users on various online platforms. Examples of social media include forums, blogs, microblogs, wikis, podcasts, videos, photo sharing sites and more. Social media applications include Facebook, Twitter, Youtube and Flickr.
Social Media Statistics
Watch this video to get an idea of the importance of social media and why you should pay attention to it:
So, um….yeeeaah… you need to pay attention to it.
Thoughts on Social Media for Your Martial Arts Business
- It’s public. You’re not the only one who can find the good, bad and the ugly about your business online. Potential students are looking for reviews and info on what’s being said about your martial arts school. I check my Google Analytics account regularly for what keywords are being used to find my site. Increasingly, people are adding “reviews” on the end of my schools name so I know people are doing this (at least to me).
- Get ahead of it. Social media might not be your thing, but that doesn’t mean you should ignore it. Dip your toes in now and at least see what’s being said. By having an established and active presence, if something does hit the fan, you will have history for spectators to better compare against to make a more informed opinion. If you have a student or instructor who’s particularly savvy with it, have them train you on how to get involved.
- Be responsive. At some point someone will say something online that may do damage to your businesses reputation. Hopefully you don’t experience what is happening to these martial arts schools on RipOffReport.com. Monitor your martial arts schools name by using tools like Google Alerts and respond as soon as it hits your radar. DO NOT WAIT. Whether it is positive or negative, it’s still good to respond.
- Listen. Really listen. If people are making criticisms, are they valid? If they offer suggestions, can you incorporate them into your business? One way or the other, address these by responding to them wherever they may appear. I can’t tell you how many good suggestions have come my way since starting my Facebook Fan Page for my martial arts school.
- It gets easier the more you do it. It takes time to get used to updating and monitoring social media. However, if you build it into your routine and schedule it you will be more on top of it as the days go on.
- Everyone is a marketer. Using social networks, everyone at your school is a potential marketer. Your students and instructors might already be posting information and helping to you grow your martial arts school. This should be encouraged and even rewarded at times.
With social media you can publicly resolve unsolved issues… address bad customer experiences… thank people for praise and ideas… promote a special offer… run a contest… and more.
Taking your first step into social media will also help you to connect with existing students and potential students in a way your competitors might not be; which can help you build a competitive advantage.
How do you use social media at your martial arts school?