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You Are the Best Advertisement for Jiu Jitsu
Yes, you heard that right. You are a walking advertisement. Every time you have a friend, family member or coworker comment on those lbs you've lost, or you rep your academy t-shirt out in public, you are helping to spread what we practitioners already know, that jiu jitsu is the gospel.
Marketing companies spend billions of dollars every year trying to figure out how to sell products to consumers. The benefits you receive from investing your time on the jiu jitsu mats can help others and for lack of a better term, "sell" them on the art. This will help your academy, the growth of the sport, and also you, as you will gain additional training partners.
You carry within you an incredible power to potentially help change someone's life. My Professor Tom DeBlass has often tells me that he feels that many people who train jiu jitsu have searched their whole life for something meaningful and they've finally found it on the mats. And that meaning can be different for every single person you meet. Some people are looking for stress relief. Some are looking to get in shape. Some people could benefit from being around a large, positive group of like-minded friends. The specific reason doesn't really matter, but what does matter is that YOU can be the catalyst to help introduce someone to the art.
How can I advertise jiu jitsu?
Talk about it
This seems obvious, but I've come across people in the past that prefer to follow rule number one of "Fight Club" and not talk about jiu jitsu at all. It can sometimes be rare to find someone with a similar interest in strangling and maiming people for fun at work, but everybody talks about their current fitness routine and whatever fad diet they are on. This would be a great time to share a little bit about jiu jitsu with colleagues. I'm not saying "be that guy" who tries to insert their Crossfit escapades (just a totally random example, I swear) into conversation, but instead don't miss an opportunity to share the good news about BJJ if it's relevant.
A few examples I've had is any time I've lost weight, it doesn't fail that people ask me what I'm doing. I take this opportunity to share a bit about whatever I'm doing from a nutritional or diet standpoint and I always tell them that its important to find a physical activity that you truly enjoy to be successful in the long term, and then BAM--I bring up jiu jitsu. Another situation I've experienced numerous time is the friend or coworker asking about martial arts for their kids. I do not want to bash any martial art, because I feel that any organized and structured activity can be beneficial for children, but having experienced other martial arts both as a practitioner and as a parent, I can honestly say that jiu jitsu is the best I've experienced for practicality and value. Check out this amazing video from former Navy Seal Jocko Willink and his thoughts on the best martial arts for people.
Another way to talk about and advertise jiu jitsu is to post about it on your social media accounts. Share photos of you and your teammates. Celebrate promotions by sharing and commenting. Simply "checking in" to your academy or school lets people on your friends list see that jiu jitsu is important to you. Share articles and blog posts that have impacted you. An article like this one from our very own BJJ Fanatics database on what to do when rolling would be great to share with friends and teammates if it helped you.
Another useful thing to share with people would be resources to help get them off to the right foot. Something like Travis Lutter's DVD series "The Road to Blue Belt" would be just the right tool to help save people time and wasted effort.
In closing, just remember that your commitment to BJJ comes with some responsibility to help continue to grow the art and possibly help someone else who can use the training to help them achieve their personal goals whatever they are. So embrace your role as a walking advertisement and become the billboard that BJJ deserves.