Let’s explore the difference between “Organic Search Engine Optimization” and PPC/Google Adwords Marketing for Your Martial Arts Business.
SEO really starts with how your martial arts business marketing website site was/is built. It must be built with search engine friendly technology. It must be structured with keywords that represent your programs and your location.
After your site is built there are steps taken to make the site relevant to search engines like Google and Bing. One of these elements is called on-site optimization which is the building block of a long-lasting and successful SEO campaign. This is like making sure you pivot and point your toes down when doing a sidekick!
Once the foundation is in place it is a process that never ends because there is not a moment where change is not happening in the SEO game. It is crucial to stay on top of these changes so your school does not get left behind. You also have to consider your competitors. Schools in your area have the same goal as you do… Get ranked! Their efforts will effect yours if you stop working at it.
Because your martial arts business is “Local a “Local SEO” strategy is a must. This strategy takes place “off-site.” It is how your website and school is seen by the “local internet” around you. In order for Google or Bing to consider your website “worthy” of a decent ranking it wants to know how other websites consider it. For this it checks to see how many websites link back yours. One strategy for this is submitting your school’s website to search engines, directories, industry directories, etc. Each one of these submissions adds a “back-link” to your martial arts marketing website
However – these directory “listings” are not maximized unless they are “owner-verified” and they are in sync. For this you must determine the best NAP (business name, address, phone number and website) you want to use. Every detail counts! And you must ensure all your listings are exactly the same. When we run our “48 Point Internet Marketing Inspections” the common mistake we see is problems with listings.
Having a review infrastructure is also important. A review infrastructure is an easy way for your students to review your business on their favorite review sites. Reviews help!
Next… Content Strategy…
When it comes to your organic SEO the question you have to answer is…
“What is our content marketing strategy going to be and how are we going to implement it?”
Your blog plays a key role. But you can also get published on other sites. The better those sites – the more weight a “back-link” from that site will have on your SEO.
Now… PPC. (Pay-Per-Click Marketing)
The king of PPC is Google Adwords. Google Adwords is not a replacement to an organic SEO strategy. PPC is a compliment. With a good PPC campaign and a sufficient budget your website can come up on the first page of Google almost immediately. Not so with SEO where rankings will take longer to achieve, but once achieved and maintained your site will most-likely keep decent ranking. Of course, this depends on many variables. Whereas with Google Adwords once you stop paying for advertising, your site will no longer show up on the first page.
PPC means that you will only pay when someone clicks on your ad. If you have set up your campaign correctly, are targeting the right keywords for what you are offering and sending those clicks to a page on your site that matches your keywords – your ad will have a pretty good chance of converting a prospect into a new student.
The beauty of Google Adwords is that it is easy to set up an account and get your campaign going. Unfortunately this ease is a double edged sword and you risk throwing away money if your campaign is not properly set up. You’ve been warned! I had a new client once ask me to take a look at his Adwords account. He had this set up prior to us working with him. His campaigns were set up all wrong and he was spending $1000 more per month than he had too.
The cardinal rule in PPC is relevance. Your keywords must be relevant to your ad which must be relevant to your landing page. This makes Google happy! Google rewards you by giving you a high quality score. A decent quality score means that you will pay less for the same ad position than your competitor if they have a low quality score. This means that even if you don’t have a huge budget, with all things in place and optimized you can compete against competitors with larger budgets!
With Google Adwords you should at least test out a few different campaigns and collect data for about 120 days. Then, study the data and adjust your strategy.
An easy but often under-utilized tool that can help you with your SEO and Martial Arts Business Internet Marketing is video.
But I want you to think about it in a different way.
Don’t worry for now about producing some fancy videos.
Of course, for branding and professional image, fancy videos can help.
For now – think – Happy Students and Social Proof.
Happy Students and Social Proof can help you with your Search Engine Optimization.
Here’s what to do…
Step 1: Be on the look out. When students compliment you make sure you get most of them to go along with your request to record their happiness. Nothing fancy, just a minute or less.
Step 2: Post the video and optimize it properly.
What happens is…
You get double the marketing bang!
What I mean is…
Done right your videos can show up in search results. Plus! Those videos contain proof elements to help persuade searchers that your school is a good thing.
Don’t Let Your Internet Marketing “Limp Along”…
Visit: Website Inspection
to Grab our 48 Point Check Up and See Where You Can Make Some Major Improvements.
This might not seem like a big deal.
But it’s the start of something powerful to grow your martial arts school business
I was checking on a martial arts business marketing client’s new Facebook Ads campaigns that we’re helping with.
I noticed we increased page likes by 51 in 7 days. Not bad considering we are targeting the exact people who are most-likely to become students.
Even better because an increase by 51 in a week represents a 7% increase overall.
One more number.
He also had 6 new “Check Ins.”
6 might not seem like a big deal.
But it is considering prior to us mapping out a Facebook strategy all check-ins were random. Now he’s getting one per day.
That’s one new person everyday deciding to tell their friends they are at his school.
What if your students were telling more friends about your karate or martial arts school? That would be good for business right?
I don’t care if you’re a one man/woman show or you have a staff of three or more.
Internet Marketing – Social Media Marketing – it’s all about being strategic.
This is a little thing.
But successful martial arts business owners are about the little things.
Picture a web page…
Say – it is for marketing your kids martial arts program as an example.
Doesn’t always have to be this way – but that’s a a good starting point.
Yes – you can have video and images of course!
But then you have these Testimonials from happy parents.
Some of them are 2 sentences others are a paragraph.
It’s a good idea to have photos for them too.
So here’s the debate…
Should the testimonials go between the words…
yada – yada
A lot of sites do that. Heck – I used to do it!
But then I realized adding testimonials like that would compare to this…
Picture you’re talking to a prospective student in your martial arts school face to face.
You’re giving them some info about the program and then all of sudden you stop and say…
“Here! Read what Sally had to say!”
Then you get back to giving them info and then a minute later you say…
“Look at what Bob had to say!”
Then, you move on.
Well – why do that on your page?
We what have begun to do with redesigns of websites is to put the testimonials on the side bar of the pages.
So you end up with an UN-interrupted message to your visitor.
All the while the prospect can see the “Social Proof” on the side of your page.
Just like them being in your lobby or office where you might have these testimonials on display in nice frames.
The proof elements just ooze out and you end up making a great impact.
Anyway –That’s all for now.
You should be on Facebook and be using a Facebook business page to promote your martial arts schools
If you’re not – you are missing out for sure.
But there’s something else that’s important here – REALLY Important.
And so far 19 out of 20 of our “48 Point Web Marketing Inspections” have revealed this key element as being missing or done in-correctly. Most martial arts business websites miss it.
I’m talking about your martial arts schools school’s blog.
And no – not some “social site” done improperly or the blog you’re doing on “blogger” or some SEO magic blog.
A blog as PART of your main website is really key.
Facebook is great – but the “Shelf-Life” for one of your status updates will be any where from 5 minutes to 2 or 3 days MAX! These things evaporate into the Facebook air.
But the shelf-life of your blog post (done right) can actually be forever.
Each time you add one you show your students and prospects things are fresh.
You gain credibility for your website in the eyes of Bing and Google and improve your SEO “juice.”
Sadly – most are either not doing this. Boggles me because it is so easy. We always do a blog training for all of your web redesign clients to show them how easy it is.
But even worse – when they are doing it – most are doing it wrong. What a waste of time.
To get this done right and also get your martial arts business internet marketing checked for 48 Key Marketing Principles head over to…
Over the last three years I’ve worked with hundreds of martial arts business owners and hundreds of business owners across diverse industries.
One thing I’ve noticed many struggle with is words.
I’m not talking about “talking”! most have the “gift of gab.”
The words they struggle with are the words on the screen or on the page that must communicate benefits to the market place.
This is called “copywriting.” And if you’re in the martial arts business you have to wear the hat of marketing copywriter from time to time.
Even if you use a “hired gun” (like me) to help you formulate the words for your martial arts marketing website you still have to wear the hat.
Why? Because that’s how you’ll be able to tell if the copy is any good. You’ll know what to look for.
It’s fine to use an ad or some sample web page copy as a baseline for your own material. But you can’t be lazy. You have to adapt it and convert it to your own voice.
You have to read it through.
His name will go un-mentioned but a former client once sent me back “approved copy for his website.” When I opened it – a spot that said (phone # here) was still there! Stuff like that does not look good on a website!
Here are a few ideas to end up with truly authentic words.
Start with your base, (Sometimes referred to as a swipe file), but sit it aside until you complete the next step…
Block out all distractions. Turn the phone off. Focus.
Think about the programs you are marketing. Then, answer the following questions and imagine a prospect was right in front of you.
“What this program is…”
“What it does for you…”
“Our unique system for producing results…”
“How the program will improve your life or solve your problem”
“What action you want them to take”
After you bang these out you have two options…
If you’re working with our team you would send this info along so we can customize a message for you.
Once complete you then whip out your base of material and start to stitch things together.
This should get you going if you have the time.