Business 1220: Marketing Report
Gracie Barra London Executive Summary
This marketing report was created to aid Gracie Barra London’s owner, Fateh Belkalem,
exposure of his gym. Fateh wanted a 40% increase in enrolment in the upcoming year. This
means that there would be approximately 40 new members. Bekalem was thinking of expanding
his gym into a fitness facility as well. This expansion would take away from his $3000 marketing
budget leaving him with only $1000 to spend.
GBL was doing very for its self without very limited marketing. Fateh was only doing this part
time and wasn’t investing much time into the gym. He had lower ranked belts teach most the
classes which wasn’t an issue but sometimes they ran into scheduling problem because
instructors couldn’t make it. GBL’s Ju-Jitsu was superior to most because it was Gracie Ju-Jitsu.
MMA had just been legalized in Ontario and martial arts in general were booming.
There is a lot of competition in town for GBL. Some of the other facilities offered more arts for
the same price. GBL lead these gyms due to their quality and Fateh passion for the BJJ lifestyle.
Also the Gracie name is a powerful brand name with a lot of customer loyalty. The name its self
affects customer perception with because it is renowned.
GBL had 4 target markets to choose from. These markets were the Western students, males,
females and children. Even though each market had its benefits that would help GBL’s
enrolment, the male market was the best bet. Most of GBL’s customers were from this market;
therefore with a proper marketing strategy GBL would be able to increase their presence.
GBL could have increased its enrolment price, but it was decided that in order to stay
competitive with the other gyms GBL could not afford to increase the price. GBL did add Judo
as another art that they provide. Judo and Ju-Jitsu complement each other very well because they
are both grappling based arts. There weren’t many options when considering place because this
is a service and not a product therefore there aren’t different distribution chains.
GBL’s best promotional methods were the direct mail and LTC ad options. Both of these cater
perfectly to the target market. Also with the direct mail it is possible to specifically place the
mail in households where GBL’s target market is present. The LTC busses allow for maximum
exposure around London. The $3000 marketing budget was feasible for GBL. It wasn’t a major
investment and the return on this investment will be very high. GBL will be pleased with the
opportunities that will come with their enrolment increase. Marketing Challenge
Fateh Belkalem is the owner and head instructor of a Brazilian Ju-Jitsu (BJJ) gym in London
Ontario known as Gracie Barra London (GBL). Fateh has already established a good customer
base in his 6 years of operation. M. Belkalem’s goal is to increase enrolment by 40% for the
upcoming year. To get that increase in enrolment GBL will need to decide on the following: a
target market that will be focused on, a method or methods of promotion will need to be chosen
as well as whether or not improvements will be made to the schedule and facility of Fateh’s gym.
This year sales for GBL were approximately $92,400 (Exhibit). Considering that Belkalem has
hasn’t been focusing full time on GBL the sales revenue number isn’t too bad. The current
advertising budget for GBL is $3000 of Fateh’s own money that he has saved up. Fateh is willing
to reinvest in his company, this hints at a bright financial future for GBL. If he expands his gym
into a fitness gym as well he will he will only have $1000 marketing budget. This may not be
enough to achieve his 40% goal.
GBL’s greatest marketing tool is the Gracie name. The Gracie name is renown not only in the
BJJ world but it all martial arts. The Gracie name implies quality training. Without a big enough
budget to create a full fledge marketing campaign, the Gracie name will allow for the greatest
exposure of GBL. Gracie Barra’s efforts to improve its franchises will also be a key factor in
expanding GBL’s name.
Fateh dedication and Gracie relationship makes it evident that GBL offers a great product. Now
that Fateh will be operating GBL full time, some of the previous restrictions regarding the schedule will be eliminated increasing customer satisfaction. Also his investment in a better
Tatami will enhance the facility.
Fateh Belkalem vast history and experience in the martial arts world will provide great
knowledge on how to adapt to the changes in the martial arts indusry. His experience will also
allow him to provide the best experience for his students. His other instructors are well trained
but GBL needs to solve its problem with rescheduling due to instructors not making it.
In 2011 MMA was legalized in Ontario, this has created a lot of media buzz and it increased the
exposure for martial arts in Ontario.
London’s difficulty to recover from the recession and its high unemployment rate means that
people may not have disposable income to spend on an activity like BJJ. The students in London
also may not have enough money to cover a monthly cost due to the tuition and living costs.
In the previous year, the UFC has held their biggest event in history in Ontario. Leading up to
this event there was a lot of promotion done regarding MMA which lead to an increase in
knowledge of the arts like BJJ. Also MMA is the world’s fastest growing sport, its exposure is
higher never than it ever was with the new TV deals the UFC has signed.
There hasn’t been any advancement in technology that lead to an improvement in BJJ training or
any martial arts. Competitive Analysis
The Submission Academy is open under the Drsydale name, a name that is synonymous with
quality in the world of BJJ, this will attract customers. That said there lower prices may portray a
lack of quality, when considering consumer perception, for those looking to compete. The
academy does not have many hours of operation every week so the students don’t get as much
practice time. However, the Academy’s presence at BJJ tournament gets its name out there and
creates buzz about the gym its self, this is something GBL should consider. Bindner’s Ju-Jitsu
Academy is not a Ju-Jitsu based gym and the BJJ instructor is not a black belt proving that the
quality offered is not upper-class. The Alliance name is not a heavyweight in the BJJ world
which is a lack of presence when comparing names. Theie variety of martial arts offered is a
good way of attracting more customers because some people may not want to do only BJJ.
Adrenaline MMA’s greatest asset are the owners’ reputation. They are all UFC fighters which
implies that they are superior to all the rest even though it may not be true. Its variety of arts
makes it ideal for someone who wants to do MMA but for specific arts it portrays a lack of focus
on each art meaning that the direct quality of the art may not be great.
The indirect competition is vast in London with the government implemented programs which
increases the exposure of other recreational activities to the population. Other physical activities
are also much cheaper than BJJ and some are even free and there is no set schedule which allows
for freedom of choice for the practitioners.
The Western campus is densely populated, this makes it easier to get exposure with a limited
advertising budget. Students are looking for new ways of competing and staying in shape, BJJ provides that. This market is always aware of what’s popular, seeing that MMA is growing and
their fan base is dominantly this age group, the students will have passion to practice BJJ.
Although most students do not live in London, they are here for 8 months of the year which will
allow for enough time to enjoy the art. GBL isn’t located too far away from campus so travel
should not be an issue for most. The pricing could end up being too much for the students to
This market may already be saturated, making it difficult to keep pursuing them. Males are
looking for new ways to stay in shape both competitively and or recreationally. Most men will
probably be attending evening classes. It will not be as difficult for them to reach the gym
because they may already have means transportation. Also the males will be able to attend the
gym all year because they are most likely living in London.
This is a market that is yet to be hit by the BJJ gyms. Females will enjoy the benefits of BJJ
because it allows for physical fitness improvements as well as the ability to protect one self. Like
males, the females should be able to frequent the gym all year long. Females may want to have
their own class instead of training with men which could cause a problem because it will be very
slow until there are enough females for a full class. Therefore achieving a 40% enrolment
increase may take longer.
This market may be difficult to reach because they will have to go through the parents and BJJ
will be competing with the more common arts like Karate. It may be more difficult to attend the
classes for children during the year because of school. Also the classes will need to be smaller
taking away some practice time for the other practitioners because there will be more classes. Marketing Decisions
GBL’s current marketing strategy is limited. There hasn’t been much marketing done and yet
they have managed to attract a solid male base. The western students may not have the time or
the financial means to participate in BJJ. The children will be more difficult to reach because to