While promoting free seminars can be good for creating awareness and traffic, it’s even better if you can get paid for it. Here is an example of how I got a local non-profit to sponsor a COBRA-Defense Children’s Abduction Prevention (CAP) seminar that I taught at James Theros’ Level 10 Martial Arts in Palm Harbor, FL.
I’m not including the names of the contact and non-profit.
Five days out from the seminar, I received a letter in the mail from a local non-profit organization. I went to their website and submitted this email on Monday for a Saturday seminar.
Email 1- From Me to Them
Subject: Letter from JSP re: Anti-Bully and Child Abduction Prevention Workshop
I received a letter today from you guys with an insert for the Non-Profit. That is commendable.
I am looking for an organization that would partner with me to teach families how to deal with bullies and how to prevent child abduction.
The Non-Profit is fund raising to assist the less fortunate in our community such as house repairs, providing food, hygiene products to the homeless and so forth. Your endeavor is also commendable. At this time we would like to donate funds for 5 tickets hoping this will help you reach your goal. If you know of anyone who may need our services please send them our way and also if you know of people that would like to donate to our cause have them reach out to me.
Email 3-My response
Sent: Wednesday, August 07, 2019 11:00 AM
To: Michael T
Subject: RE: Letter from JSP re: Anti-Bully and Child Abduction Prevention Workshop
Good morning Mike,
Thanks so much for your response and donation. I think I know the perfect family for your 5 ticket donation.
I can also help with the Non-Profit with social media, press releases, etc…
Email 4-Their response
I just talked to my partner and we will go 10 tickets now, let me know how to get you the funds. Credit Non-Profit and thanks for any media coverage.
The week after the event, they sent me a check for $290. Not bad for a couple of emails.
This kind of sponsorship really has no limits in size or scope. Have you had events sponsored? Would you like to learn more about this? Just comment below.
Video 1. Watch a nice BBC profile on a very pretty girl in a very ugly outfit.
Video 2. Listen to a short audio clip from Sean Hannity as he describes his MMA training to Bill O’Reilly, who teases him about his “little white outfit.”
Question: What do you think? Should the Gi be History?
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I received an email last week that will be of great interest to you and/or your students. The casting agent at Sarah Finn Casting in Los Angeles is looking to cast a young male in a martial arts oriented role.
Their past castings include,Black Panther, Avengers: Endgame, The Lion King, Jungle Book, Crash, Dora the Explorer, and Fast & Furious.
Here is the letter:
“Hi Mr. Graden, I am writing to you because we are currently in the casting process for one of our upcoming big budget feature films and would love your help.
We are seeking young (age 7-12) males of Chinese descent who are trained in Martial Arts and have, if possible (though not necessary), some acting experience. Do you know of any talented martial artists who would be interested in this opportunity?”
To submit, please email written responses to the information below, along with a current photo of your child, with the subject “STUDIO FEATURE FILM” to email@example.com
WE ARE FILMING JANUARY 2020 – MAY 2020
1) Name, height, and age 2) Your availability & location (just city/state – you don’t need to tell us your address!) 3) Any information you’d like to share about your background 4) Level of Mandarin fluency, both speaking and understanding (i.e. fluent, conversational, basic, etc..) 5) Details of your martial arts experience (i.e. how many years, what type of training/areas of expertise) 6) Do you have any acting experience? (School plays, local theater, commercials, etc) 7) Anything else about yourself you’d like to share
Please feel free to also send us any reference video footage that you have (martial arts/acting) – we would like to see as much as you’re willing to share!
NOTE: No demo in the COBRA-Defense system is EVER rehearsed. We always pull a stranger from the audience/class and see how things play out naturally rather than a fake fight and fake responses.
Also, notice Chris is not using any special physical skills. 90% of the COBRA curriculum are mental strategies, understanding, and planning. The other 10% are skills you have to use if your prevention measures are breached.
What do you think? Please share and comment.
* Maybe that’s why my new book is titled, Unarmed and Dangerous.
In most martial arts schools, there are predictable events that you can time your review requests with.
When a new student joins.
When a student advances in rank.
When a student or family member praises the school.
When a student wins a tournament.
When a student or family member describes defending him or herself.
During or after a special event.
It’s a good idea to train your staff to “whip out their phones” when a student or family members praise the school.
A student or parent says, “That was a great class.”
The staff member politely asks, would you mind telling our Facebook followers about it? It’ll just take a second.”
Staff member pulls out the phone and shoots a waist up clip. If the student flubs it, just say, “No problem. Ready for take 2?” Keep it light and fun.
It’s also okay to ask the student questions to answer. For instance, “What were you looking for in a martial arts school?” If you don’t like the answer, just ask for a “take 2” and coach on what you’d like to hear.
Here are some examples from our COBRA-Defense Conference in Miami in June.
While the event was happening, I was pulling instructors aside, placing them next to the COBRA banner and doing short interviews that I edited into bite-sized testimonials.
Audio is CRITICAL
Even the best testimonial is useless if you can’t hear what the person issaying. I attached a lavalier collar microphoneso that their voice would be captured above the event background noise.
Rather than stop there, I asked him, “What is the difference in value that parentssee in a COBRA-Defense class versus a martial arts class?” His answer was spot on. This is how you can lead a student down the path of saying what you want them to say in their own words. Stay curious.
Martin Lopez is another good example. He made his first statement and I followed up with questions to pull more out of him and he delivered.
Keep in mind, both Sidney and Martin are good speakers. It’s much harder to get through a bunch of “ums, ahs, and um…” zzzzzzzzz
Most people will not get it right on the first try. Here is one example of many different people that simply needed a “take 2.” Ask them to hold up 2 fingers, so it’s easier for you to find the edit spot later. Sometimes, you go on to 3 fingers, but if you get that far, it may be time for a different question or excuse them from the process.
When people get stuck, ask this, “What would you tell your friends if they were considering joining our school?”
You may want to edit out some words or change the order of the comments using one of a ton of video editors. Kapwing.com is a treasure chest of great tools and information that covers all of your post-production tasks such as:
Caption the video. Most social media video is watched in mute, so make sure your message gets delivered by captioning the video.
Transcribe the video. Take the captions and turn them into a couple of paragraphs under the video. Lot’s of people, like me, will not take the time to watch a captioned video and would prefer to read it. However, because the speaker is on the video saying nice things about your school, it still has more impact than if it was just a written review.
Title the video with the student’s name and topic. Here I used a lower thirds from iMovie.