The top reasons why people join adult martial arts classes
Martial arts rose to prominence in America after World War 2, as officials and government advisors saw the need for a disciplined combat system to train soldiers in close combat when faced with dangerous situations that do not call for loud or ranged weapons. As a martial arts gym owner, it is important to remember the origin of how this came to be, as the word “Martial” pertains to military training. While most martial arts schools cater to families and children, adults make up a larger and growing demographic of the market.
According to research, the top reasons for adults joining martial arts classes were fitness, self-defense, and discipline. For those that are not looking for a traditional gym and workout environment, seeking alternative choices, such as martial arts, dance and group classes are a great substitute and have a ready market at hand. Furthermore, many adults that attend follow available due to the improvements they’ve seen in their children’s discipline and confidence, or have studied a form of martial arts themselves when they were young and would like to further that training now that they have more independence and resources available.
Promoting adult martial arts classes
Advertising classes for adults should not be any more difficult than promoting other demographics and counterparts. The most important thing to remember is that your branding should match your ideal member, and focus on targeting those pain points rather than catering to a general audience. If you are already catering to young and teenage children, you can easily pivot to the parents and offer special promotional deals and classes so that they can try out your services before making a full transition.
Most martial arts classes demand a significant time investment at multiple hours of the week to advance to the next belt. While it may be easier for children to be dropped off and picked up outside of school hours, adults are busier and more concentrated schedules. Before beginning to market your services, setting up a proper onboarding and intake infrastructure, combined with flexible scheduling should be established so that adults can make proper advancement towards the next dans, stripes, belts, or levels
💡 Mixed martial arts (MMA) fans have long debated which combat style is the most dominant. Wrestling, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ), kickboxing, boxing, Muay Thai, Taekwondo, and Karate are the principal fighting techniques featured in the UFC.
Ways to market your martial arts club to adults
- Focused targeting
Keeping in mind the statistics presented at the beginning of the article, your message must incorporate the top three main pain points: Fitness, Discipline, and Self-Defense. This means that not only must the messaging contain all three of these solutions, but it must be targeted to the specific niche that requires this solution. For example, self-defense may be easy to promote to children in alliance with anti-bullying measures and organizations.
However, self-defense is a more sensitive subject for adults. A state study concluded that women felt more confident and were able to defend themselves after completing a form of martial arts. It is important to incorporate this in your messaging.
- Where is the attention
World-renowned disruptor and marketing genius Gary Vaynerchuk always mentions in his talks and interviews that the purpose behind marketing is finding where your ideal customer spends their time and attention. This is where creating an ideal consumer checklist becomes extremely important, as you can figure out where they spend their free time. For example, when targeting parents of your younger students, a great first place to advertise would be at the entrance to your dojo, with clear promotions and messaging. Other places could include more traditional gyms and health services, such as dietitians and physiotherapists.
As a seaway to the above, creating partnerships and referral programs with other businesses related to your niche can create a symbiotic relationship of referrals between each other, oftentimes without the need for monetary compensation. This can be taken a step further and incorporated into a wellness or class program at workplaces and other gyms. For example, many benefits include health and wellness allowances for certain workplaces, so scheduling a program and demo class can attract those employees to attend your classes to spend their health and wellness credits.
- Get social
Did you know that 85% of Americans have a smartphone and 97% have one form of a cell phone? This means that every adult that is sitting in your dojo or looking for your services is searching for them online. If you are not regularly posting on your pages, asking for reviews and testimonials, and are not placing engaging videos of your classes, you may be missing out on an enormous revenue stream.
Once you develop a marketing strategy, the best thing to do is automate and scale it while analyzing metrics to make informed decisions. This also means coordinating staff, incorporating new payment messages, scheduling new classes and members, and developing and onboarding infrastructure. This shift can be extremely daunting without a proper system in place. Spark Membership is the number one martial arts and member management full-service software on the market, and you can try it for just $1.