[344] How to build your audience through a Facebook group

how to build your audience through a facebook group gordon burcham

Is your Facebook group taking up all your time but not making you any sales in your business?

In this episode, I talk to Gordon Burcham, Martial Arts School Owner and Multi World Kickboxing Champion about how he is generating a six figure income from a Facebook group. He also shares the remarkable story of how he bounced back - and turned around his business - after losing his home, 12 years ago.

{Click on the player above to listen to the podcast episode and/or read on for a detailed overview. Scroll down to the bottom to read the show notes including all the links mentioned in this episode}.


The importance of perseverance in business

Today, as well as a hugely successful Facebook group, Gordon runs a 400 plus member martial arts school, but he and his family have overcome significant hurdles to achieve this success. Twelve years ago he lost his house while trying to build his business: “I was an instructor but I didn't understand business. I was just throwing money at advertising and didn't really know what I was doing,” he recalls.

Despite struggling to feed his family on £25 a week, he borrowed money and sold his possessions to invest £3,000 a month in a business coach. In less than 90 days, he was generating £10k a month in his business.

Turning his business around meant weeks of 16 hour days, when he and his wife walked the streets, pushing leaflets through peoples’ doors.

But Gordon believes many business owners aren’t prepared to put in this kind of  perseverance. “Most people don't want to do the hard work,” he says. “They’re lazy marketers and they're lazy in their business. They're not willing to do what it takes. I'll just do more than the other people are willing to do.”

How changing his marketing strategy helped Gordon turn his business around

When Gordon looked at why his business was failing he realised that by trying to market his martial arts classes to everyone, he wasn’t appealing to anyone. So he started to niche down the programmes he offered.

He began to target specific demographics - starting a ‘ladies only programme, for example and creating leaflets and landing pages specifically designed to appeal to women.”

And instead of relying on one or two marketing strategies to generate sales, he introduced a marketing mix. And when he started to use a combination of online and offline marketing activities e.g. leaflets, emails, networking and referral marketing, his business really started to take off.

The power of mentors/coaches

Gordon believes that investing in business coaching has helped him accelerate his business success by around 10 years. But many business owners aren’t prepared to invest in themselves, he says.

Too many people tell themselves they don’t need a coach because they’ve read all the books and done all the courses. But knowing and implementing are two completely different things. And many business owners need to hear the same information, over and over, in different ways, before it really sinks in.

“Repetition is so important,” he says. “You need to hear the same information from your coach and you need to hear it in different ways. And you have to repeat it enough for it to sink from your conscious to your subconscious mind.”

(Listen to episode 257: Do you need to pay to play for more information on why investing in yourself is vital for your business.)

How to harness the power of live video

Live video is now a huge part of Gordon’s marketing strategy. “It is so powerful because it creates a deeper connection between you and your audience,” he says.

He repurposes his Facebook Live videos by downloading them and getting transcriptions from Rev.com  (Affiliate Link) and turning them into blog posts. This content now forms the basis of a membership site,  for which he charges £47 + VAT per month - meaning he is truly leveraging the time spent recording those Facebook Live videos.

Gordon understands that many people are nervous about going live on Facebook and admits it’s taken him a long time to do it with confidence. “When people see me on stage, I'm very out there, very dramatic and I've got a lot of energy. But I've taught myself to do that. It's not natural,” he says.

How Gordon has built a profitable Facebook group

The Martial Arts Mastery is an extremely successful Facebook group turning over a quarter of a million pounds despite having only 1,400 members.

Gordon explains that the key to his Facebook group’s success is that it’s very niche (only martial arts school owners from the UK are allowed to join).

There are several things that Gordon does to encourage engagement in the group. These include:

  • Welcoming new members as soon as they join the group
  • Posting daily content in the group
  • Going live inside the group at least once a day
  • Asking for likes and comments on his Facebook Live broadcasts
  • Running regular competitions inside the group
  • Asking members to share their opinions on martial arts related topics (and not being afraid of being controversial)
  • Checking your stats and only posting within the optimum time slot

(Listen to episode 265 for tips on how to get more engagement in your Facebook group.)

He is not afraid to make paid offers to the group because he is providing free valuable content on a daily basis. If you’re adding value, you’ve “earned the right to sell.” he says.  And in the early days he offered free coaching in exchange for testimonials. In fact he still does this now - all he asks is that members share their successes in the Facebook group.


Podcast show notes:

  • Gordon’s business story (4:55)
  • Why you need to niche down who you’re targeting (13:05)
  • Why persistence pays off and you need to work through the fear (16:04)
  • How to grow your Facebook group and keep your audience engaged (26:25)
  • How to structure your time to create content for your Facebook group (33:38)
  • Why you need to invest in training - and then put it into practice! (39:35)
  • How to sell in your Facebook group (44:10)


Gordon’s website

Gordon on Facebook and LinkedIn

Rev.com (Affiliate Link)

Episode 327: Why I’m closing my 13.5k Facebook group

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