The relationship between golf clubs and members has never been closer to being a sales pitch than it is now in my opinion. Which is sad, but it is what it is and we must try and make this “sales pitch” as genuine as possible. Despite it being my opinion that golf clubs will never reach the car salesman image I do believe the level of trust that was once present is no longer there.
In a recent survey of over 4000 UK Golfers, focusing on the current state of golf in the country, 80% of golfers said that they read reviews to help them find new courses to play, with 74% stating that those ratings had, at times helped them to decide whether to play a new course or not.
Having a bank of reviews and testimonials from people loving your club is huge. Not only that it gets away from the club selling themselves, it becomes a decision based on trust again. When I buy a car, I’m not going to just take the salesman’s word, because he has to sell me that car! The same way Wentworth aren’t going to say “oh maybe you would prefer Sunningdale” to their visitors. Golfers are wise to the fact that the only people not trying to sell them something are the golfers themselves!
If 80% of golfers admitted to reading reviews I think that tells you all you need to know.
Golf Clubs have such a great opportunity, golfers are in my opinion some of the most opinionated people in the world, probably down to how easy it is to compare golf courses! If golf courses are not on every review site there is and trying their hardest to improve review scores then it is nothing short of a disaster. 80% of golfers
I have recently been made aware of the website “chips and wedges” – http://www.chipsandwedges.com/ who are in my opinion going to be the website of the future (and arguably now) when it comes to reviewing sites. Their model involves golf clubs inviting them onto their course for free and doing a video review of the club and a score on their scoring system. This is exactly the sort of thing golf clubs could be utilising and using to propel themselves to the front of people’s minds
There should be some sort of effort made to get feedback from every golfer that plays your course. This is of course unrealistic however if you could even get a few really good opinions then this will have a selling effect like nothing you could imagine. The more recognised this person is the better
Something as simple “loved this course, great condition and will be back” could not only leave that person feeling important but could lead to a number of visitors in the future.
As usual with digital media nowadays, the more graphic the better so why not have video testimonials? You could be really creative and get golfers to take a GoPro out with them? Real time reviews!
A tactic that is commonly used with bigger resort golf courses, I never understand why it is not adopted with smaller golf clubs too. Every golf club in the world (probably!) has some sort of celebrity within their geographical area. Why not offer them and their friends a free game in return for a social media shout out or a testimonial of some sort! Let the fact they are famous, make you famous! You would be surprised at the people that would bite your hand off for a free game of golf!
These are just a few areas of where testimonials and reviews can take you, the possibilities are endless. Remember, golfers trust each other, not golf club sales people!
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