COM0015 – BLOG #4 – One more piece of the puzzle

As a photographer (working for federal government) I also have my side business and I understand what’s involved in the challenge of managing your own enterprise.

When I started this Social Media Course about a year and a half ago, I felt that Social Media and Photography would be a great complement to each other. I also knew that I wanted to eventually work on a plan for the Martial Art School I am attending. It is a small local business with an owner who comes from Venezuela and since I joined only a couple months following the opening, I get to witness the progress of his academy as one of the first adults in the group. I regularly have discussions with the owner about his school and processes, whether it concerns physical renovations or social medias posts and recruiting, etc.

Creating a social media plan and especially the SWOT analysis for a business that is outside my field (photography) and comparing its performance to other schools in the area was something that allowed me to analyze somehow outside my comfort zone.

I realized that I was really enjoying having an input into his growing business. Integrating Networking + Social Media + Business/marketing turned out to be very interesting. It felt as if everything was falling into place. Just the way I felt Social Media and Photography would complement each other. I think that, moving forward, I will be seeking some courses in marketing, as this is probably the missing piece of the puzzle.

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COMM0015 – Blog #2 – Taking the fight online

In my local community of Aylmer, Québec, you can find 3 Martial Arts Gym within a 3-kilometers radius. All 3 offers Jiu-Jitsu Classes and rank pretty good on Google and seems to all have a reasonable followership. Let’s see how they do on Social Medias, from west to east:

Arts Martiaux Patenaude Aylmer

Patenaude’s website is well made and bilingual but their social media presence is really lacking. Their site links to a Facebook page to a network of schools under the same name but their second last post is from 2015. As for Twitter, it is linked to one of the coach’s personal account. While they have no Instagram, their YouTube page is like a gallery of fights and techniques but seems fairly up to date. Overall, I would say they don’t value Social Media very much.

Website   Facebook   YouTube    Twitter


Screen capture of Patenaude’s website

Aylmer Jiu-Jitsu & Muay-Thai

Similar Scenario for Aylmer Jiu-Jitsu &Muay-Thai, a great professional website showcasing their members upfront and bilingual. As for Social Medias, they are only present on Facebook and they do a good job at adding post regularly, about twice a week. Their page is branded with a nice logo and they post a wide variety of topics, lots of pictures, promotions, they brag about their new equipment and even post videos of the trainings. They engage and respond to comments. Overall they have a good balance between recruiting and promoting their activity to their actual members.

Website   Facebook


Screen Capture of Aylmer Jiu-Jitsu’s website

EBO Martial Arts

EBO’s presence online start with a professional looking website which is full of information and is bilingual (although the French side would need some revisions). The Facebook and Instagram Feeds are updated regularly with new content. On Facebook they really take advantage of the Live feature a lot and the tone used is personal and informal. Instagram is showing a lot of the same posts but with even more pictures of the academy and the people training. It really looks like they have built a community and take advantage of reposting/sharing content from the Evolution Network which they are a part of. I believe they have the best presence online in our neighbourhood.

Website   Facebook  Instagram


Screen Capture of EBO Martial Arts’s website

Which one to pick?

When you train in martial arts, it is the community that makes a difference. If you manage to make your school look approachable and focus your efforts on promoting how fun the group even when going through some hard workouts, you have better chances to succeed.

Disclaimer: I have been training at EBO Martial Arts for almost 2 years now and this comparison was not meant to compare the quality of each schools but rather the quality of their presence online.



People tell stories and everyone has a story to tell.  Storytelling is important to digital content because it puts a face, a character or a personality to an otherwise faceless media outlet.

People plug in to social media to make connections, and storytelling make those connections happen in the way that stories, people’s stories come from the heart, and people reading the stories feel they know something personally about the storyteller.

What story is here for this martial arts school?

What story is here for this martial arts school?

Big companies are often concerned with their corporate brand.  The public are familiar with their brand and know what to expect.  But imagine, when that brand moves from being some untouchable entity somewhere out there to a series of personal stories about Damien Thomas’ experiences with that company, or how his grandfather grew up with that company’s products in his house, the brand is made personal and is brought closer to the consumer.  When people think about the brand they now think about Damien’s experiences and how his experiences are familiar or connected to their own.

People will gravitate toward what they know and trust.  If companies can create digital content that is derived from people’s stories, they will create an online atmosphere of trusted social connections.

In order to create interesting digital content that people can connect with, I plan to write colourful life experience stories about my work in child care.  I think telling stories that people can relate to will bring them to my blog over and over because they will have their similar stories to tell.