The Martial Arts Business Pivot Gameplan
How to get your martial arts students to commit, show up, and fill your pipeline with new prospects in uncertain times.
- How to shift from being a fear consumer to a content creator
- The new 9 accelerators that you should focus on in the ‘new normal’
- Getting back into growth mode
- And more
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Hey, George here. Hope you're well. I've just put together our new Martial Arts Pivot Game Plan. I want to go through just the big picture of the plan with you. Over the next couple of weeks, I'm going to be sharing probably a bit more in depth in regards to the certain topics that we're going to discuss here. Been having a lot of conversations with a lot of martial arts school owners over the past couple of weeks and really trying to refine what is going to happen from now, moving forward. So I'm going to map it out for you. I'm not the best at handwriting and drawing, but I think it will give you a good context of what the plan looks like and how to move forward.
First up, let's start with the now. Let's work it from the inside out, but let's work it where we are at. Right now, most martial arts school owners and maybe for you too is, we're consumed in a state of fear, fear from the media, the social media. Just there's not a lot of positivity out there, right? We're kind of consumed with a lot of fear, right? At this point, you're kind of sitting in a, well, we'll just call it a fear consumer stage.
Now, what makes us scared, if we look at the business side of it, is right now we're in a situation where students are canceling. With students canceling, that's going to obviously, as a… within the business, impact your cash flow. And then personally, wait from here. Like, how am I going to provide for my family if the cash disappears and people aren't paying? And it's going to have a bigger impact on your family.
Then on this side, number two. For number two, we've got no normal classes. The platform has changed, hasn't it? And depending on where you're at, I know for most school owners at this point in time still in lockdown, not able to run classes other than virtually. So we're sitting in a situation of no normal classes and that kind of makes the students feel a little uncertain. Like what's going on? What's going to happen? And for you, it's a fear of the future, for fear of the future for them as well. Like where does this go if we can't have our normal classes?
And then number three, which is important but hasn't been really the focus of anyone right now, is no new sign-ups. Impact on the business, if you're not bringing on new students in this type of climate, if you're stagnating, you're really declining because things aren't just the way they are, right? So if you're going to stay the same, then there's going to be a dramatic decline in the business.
By the way, if you're watching this live, just give me a thumbs up or leave me a comment below that says live. If you're watching the replay, just comment replay just so I know. All right, cool.
So here we are, right? Students are canceling, no normal classes, no new sign-ups. And we want to flip this fear consumer mindset. And instead of being on the fear, on the defense, we really want to dial into the offense. And we've got to flip things around and we've got to become the creator, right? Creator versus consumer. Okay. So let's flip these around.
Students are canceling. What do we want them to do? Well, first up, we want them to commit. This is where the video gets a bit better, right? You're not focusing on the problems. Let's look at the solutions, right? So first up, we want them to commit. No normal classes. Instead of them getting hung up about the normal classes, we want to change their perspective and make sure they show up, start showing up to the new medium, which we'll talk about in just a minute. And then we've got no new sign ups. Instead of having no new sign ups, we want to split this around and, once again, have a full pipeline, a full pipeline of new prospects that want to get started with martial arts. Not in the same way of course, but they want a get started. If this is resonating with you, let me know in the comment below. We'd love to know your feedback.
So let's map this out further and let's dive into what I'd like to refer to as our new nine accelerators that we need to focus on. If we've got to stop students canceling, get used to the norm of no normal classes and there's no new sign ups and we want to flip these around, we want to get them to commit, to show up and have a full pipeline, then here's how this looks.
First up on the commit side, we've got to over-communicate. Right now, coming in the position where we can't communicate enough, we have to constantly keep communicating. And taking into consideration that there's no physical location right now, so there's got to be a lot of communication online, back and forth, whether it's one-on-one, whether it's in the groups, you name it.
Number two. We want to engage our community. This is one important aspect where I think a lot of people are missing the point when it comes to creating online videos, is you've got to engage your community, now more so than ever because… I mean, all your students and yourself, you're used to going into the physical location. There's that physical connection. There's that ability to shake hands, how dare we, high fives, all those things, there's connection. We don't have that right now. So we really got to focus on how we engage our community in the time that we show.
And number three, we got to multiply the value. This could be a mindset shift as well, right? Because if we're really focused on that the only value we provide is physical martial arts, within the contact, then we might struggle with that. So we've got to find other ways to multiply the value. Over-deliver in other ways within the online hemisphere.
All right. Number two. No normal classes, we want them to show up. So how are we going to do that? Well, first up, we've got to really embrace online. Because here's a fact, and again, this could be done in 30 days, 60 days, 90 days, but as of right now, for most school owners, you're an online business and you're not a physical martial arts business. That's just where you're at right now. So it's important to embrace online. I think what's important to also look at is whatever you do now in this current climate is going to add so much value to your memberships down the line when things return back to normal or the new normal, right? So we've got to embrace online.
Number two, we want to dial in the discipline with our students. So we're going to make sure they still show up and we've got to build systems around the fact that we want to make sure that they are still arriving at the classes, the virtual classes, because if we're going to lose the discipline, then slowly but surely the commitment to martial arts is going to disintegrate. So dial in the discipline.
And number three, here, is present a plan. Present the new plan because as we were talking about earlier, uncertainty, there's uncertainty and not knowing where things are headed, then that creates doubt and it enhances the fear and then people are going to start canceling and so forth. So if we have a clear plan and we show them how this is going to work, how the classes work, where this is going, how your gradings are going to work in the future, now we've got something to hang onto, it gives us certainty in a time when most people need a lot of certainty, right?
That's been most of the focus for most school owners right now. But let's look at the growth side, because we got to keep this business going, we got to keep the economy going, we got to keep our business moving forward. So we want to turn no new sign ups into a full pipeline. How are we going to do that? Well, we've got to change a couple of things. First up, we need a new offer. The offer that we ran a couple of weeks ago before all the climate changed, where we got sent to our cocoons, where we got to stay indoors, before that happened, that used to work then, but this is now. Yep. And will we get back to the previous way we used to have our offers? Perhaps so. But right now, our offers need to change.
With that, we need a new message. Where our messaging was potentially focused on something aspirational, confidence and goals and a future, we're now looking at more of a survival of how we're going to get through this and support our messaging so that it's a message of how do we get through this versus how do we go for these big goals and so forth.
So for a new message. Then with that, we've got to embrace the new medium, the new delivery. Going back to our point up here, if you're running an online business, which right now you are, then running an online business is more than just streaming classes, right? It's more than just streaming classes. So you've got to embrace the medium and really look at it in a way of, “All right. Well, if we're going to bring new students in, then how does our on-boarding change from now? How are we going to onboard our students? How are we going to deliver the right content at the right time for them so that we are in effect selling the consumption of our content?”
I'm going to leave that. But just as a quick recap. On the mindset shift, this is really important. We want to move out of the fear consumer mindset, and that means maybe turning social media off just for a little bit if it's needed to be done, right? If you need to spend less time on social media, then maybe that's a good idea. Less consumption, less consuming the fear of the media and take the creator stance. Create more content, create more videos and be on the offense instead of playing the defense.
The problems that we're tackling head on, students canceling, no normal classes, no new sign ups, and we want to flip all those on their heads. Instead of students canceling, we want to make sure that they commit, we want to make sure they show up to the new classes and we want to get back to having a full pipeline of prospects we can speak to.
Then the nine accelerators that we're going to focus on. We've got to over-communicate. Over communicate right now. Make sure that we're engaging our community. Multiply the value over and above what we used to do in the past. Embrace the online space. Take note that you now have an online business versus a standard brick and mortar martial arts business. Dial in the discipline and make sure that your students are showing up. To do that, make sure that you've got a great plan in place that they're engaged. Then how are we going to scale or how are we going to start growing again? How are we going to get that curve happening? Well, we've got to have a new offer in place, a new message and a new medium.
So I'm going to leave that with you. I'm sharing a lot of this in our Facebook group. You can find that at martialartsmedia.com… Sorry, martialartsmedia.group. You can find us there or just comment the word group below, I'll get you the link. If you need more help in implementing this plan, then just type help below or send me a message and we can have a chat and I'll see if we can help you with a plan that we are rolling out in the next couple of weeks, expanding on this game plan right here. All right. Hope that was helpful. I'll see you in the next video. Speak soon.
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