Golf Marketing University

What Grumpy Old Men Taught Me About Golf Marketing

When I was a kid I played alot of golf with my Grandad.

He taught me how to play the game and I really enjoyed our 9 hole challenges with a little bet on the side.

My grandad used to play at least 4 times a week, always at the same time. Before we’d go out we load up on banana sandwiches and tea and head out to the course.

When we’d arrive at the course 9 times out of 10 one of my granddad’s friends would also pull into the car park, walk over to the fence and look out at the golf course almost inspecting if it was fine enough to play.

My grandad would say “Hello Jerry, heading out today?” and Jerry would reply back; “A sure, I might as well. Shall we join up”?

Inevitably we did.

This was almost a daily occurrence for this group who named themselves the “GOMS” (Grumpy Old Men’s Society).

They had a kind of unspoken agreement that they would show up at the same time most days to play a few holes together.

Never admitting though that they had arranged it prior or even that they were friends.

I found this amusing.

Later in life, as I matured I realised how important these daily meetups and interactions were for the “GOMS”

It was their routine, it was their stimulation, it was their purpose and too many, it was their life.

This is the power that golf has.

It is unlike most sports in that it presents an opportunity for lifelong friendship, fun and purpose.

In marketing terms and from a business perspective that presents a massive opportunity for a very high customer lifetime value.

That is only the case however if you know who your customer is and what they want.

When you understand this you then have a great chance of being able to effectively sell memberships, wedding packages or even green fees at your maximum potential.

Take your average golf membership package, let’s call it the “Platinum Membership”. The benefits of this membership package probably sound something like this:

  • Competitions & Handicap
  • Invitation & Open Competitions Access
  • Discounted Member Guests Rates
  • Discounted Buggy Hire
  • Preferential Tee Time Booking

“What’s wrong with this?” you may ask “sounds pretty good”.

Well maybe it needs a bit more lavender scent. It’s looking a bit like the generic black plastic poo bag everyone else is selling.

It appeals to everyone and but resonates with no one group in particular.

That’s because this generic “Vanilla” approach also doesn’t start with the customer…

It’s entirely focused on the product itself.

It’s assuming that this is what the customer wants.

If you want your products and services to appeal to and resonate with a particular sub-group of your customers, the key is to start with them.

Identify which group you want to appeal to and find out what they like, what they don’t like. What their issues and concerns are. Their hopes and aspirations. And when you know more about them you can then create your own target product that will appeal to and resonate with each individual segment of your target market.

To help you get started we’ve put together a 1 Hour Guide to an Irresistible Membership Product.

FREE 1 Hour Guide to Creating Your Own Irresistible Membership Product

Step by Step ACTION PLAN to bring your new membership to life

IdealCustomer Persona Template to segment your market and identify your most profitable customers segments

Case Study:How one golf club gained over 100 new members by undertaking this very same step by step process

John King

John King is the Co-Founder of Golf Marketing University, a dedicated marketing training platform for commercial golf clubs. After spending nearly a decade marketing facilities and venues within the golf and hospitality industry, John has harnessed how to effectively guide his clients to increased sales in today's competitive and ever-changing market.

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