This is a quick post I'm writing before my workout in response to our discussion on a great Martial Arts Networking Group on Facebook. In this post I am will cover how to use Groupon and other daily deal sites for marketing your Martial Arts or Fitness Kickboxing program. I have used and rely on Groupon type sites to drive traffic into my schools in many different markets.
What are deal sites and why should I use them? Daily deal sites offer your product or service at a large discount. They have their own audience that is ready to buy deals in your area. When you post a deal, there is no need to market it. The deal site will take care of that on their own.
Setting up your Deal. Your school will need to find a balance between bringing in quality leads along with volume. The more volume you bring in, the less likely it is that your leads will convert. When I first started using Groupon I offered a 20 class package. It sold very well but we had bad conversion numbers. When I made a 5 or 10 pack available our sales stayed high and our conversions went up. I have found the most success with a 5 or 10 pack priced at $15 & $25. I do not give any uniform or gloves away with this.
Managing Expectations. If your deal promises 5 kickboxing classes then make sure you can offer it! Make sure your schedule is up-to-date as well as your phone number and address. One of the best ways to turn a quality lead into an upset customer is to sell a package and have the wrong schedule. Even worse is to sell a package for Fitness Kickboxing and then have a Karate class in place. Customers will be pissed and rightfully so!
First Class. How do you handle a Groupon customers first class? If they just jump in, you are not doing it right! Have each member fill out a new member form, you should be taking down all of their contact info. I attach this to my waiver so they must fill it out. If they arrived early (which they should as noted on their Groupon and website) offer to show them all of the techniques they will be using in class. This will make class easier for them and your instructor.
First Pitch. Now that they have seen the gym and had a conversation with you try to sell them on a class package! Thats right, before they take the class, sell to them! They key is to offer them a deal. They are, after all, coming in from a daily deal site. This is knowledge you must use! I typically offer them a discounted monthly rate if they sign-up right after their first class. We give them a discount, buy back their Groupon and you can offer free gloves or a uniforms if you'd like. Don't push hard, just let them know about the deal which is available after their first class.
After Class Pitch. Tell your lead, do not ask them how it was. "Hey Jenna, I hope you can now see how our kickboxing class will help you lose weight (insert their goal) and reach your fitness goals. Now that you can see how great the classes are, lets go over our membership packages as well as our special deal we talked about earlier."
Lead does not sign-up. Do not worry! This is what separates the men from the boys in my opinion. If a customer has 9 classes left and you treat them like a waste of your time they will not sign-up and guess what? It is a waste of your time! Treat them like a valued customer and now you have 9 more classes to wow them and sign them up! I typically look for a sale on the 1st, 2nd, 5th, 9th and 10th class.