Do you have a marketing degree? Yeah, most martial artists don’t. When I started my school 15 years ago the thing to do was push out flyers, VIP cards, and do the occasional direct mail or newspaper ad. No one taught me about how to talk to market segments. I never learned that there is a customer journey that moves people from a cold lead to an avid promoter. These were all foreign concepts to me and they might be to you.

Conversion Marketing isn’t New…It’s Just More Important

The advent of social media has thrown a lot at the marketing world and that means those who don’t have training, or don’t train themselves are even more behind because the speed of change is so quick. The idea of conversion marketing isn’t new…it’s just more important!

So what is conversion marketing? It’s the process by which you convert someone from unaware, to browser, to visitor, to lead, to customer, to promoter in a systematic way.

Let me give you an example from when I started my school back in 2002.

  • Step 1 – Convert unaware to¬†browsers
    • Place ad in newspaper
    • Hand out flyers
    • Direct mail
  • Step 2 – Convert browser to visitor (This step didn’t really exist for our market because there browsers and visitors were the same thing!)
  • Step 3 – Convert a browser/visitor into a lead
    • VIP passes
    • Trial membership offers
    • In person events
    • Buddy days
  • Step 4 – Convert a lead into a customer
    • Trial program
    • Upsells
  • Step 5 – Convert a customer into a promoter
    • Buddy days
    • Referral Rewards
    • Upgrade programs

What does this process look like in 2018?

This example leaves out all the things from the past you can STILL DO that might work for your market!

  • Step 1 – Convert unaware to browers
    • Video (edited as well as live)
    • Social media feeds
  • Step 2 – Convert browsers to visitors (Now we can segment people between people just looking around at stuff and people who are actually looking at martial arts. This is a huge step in finding the right audience to market to and move down the conversion path.)
    • Blog posts
    • Mini CTA’s
    • Content marketing assets
  • Step 3 – Convert visitors into leads
    • Offer lead magnet online
    • Website!!
  • Step 4 – Convert a lead into a customer
    • Trial offers that you sell online!
  • Step 5 – Convert a customer into a promoter
    • Upgrades
    • Online referrals
    • Reviews
    • Social shares

As you can see there are a lot of new tools and even a new step to the process. Think about it, before social media and the internet there was only one way to check out a martial arts school. You had to walk in the door. Today there’s a million ways to check out the program. They can search your website, check you out on Facebook, look up your Google reviews, and more.

The marketing game has changed. Now more than ever you have to educate yourself on the steps of the conversion marketing journey as well as the tools and strategies that work at each level.