Golf Marketing, Our Most Complete Guide Yet!
If there’s one topic we hear golf operators ask about more than any other, it’s golf course marketing! ~ GGD
There are many moving pieces inside a good marketing campaign, and a one-person team can’t be expected to manage a comprehensive strategy on their own.
You might be great at applying a few marketing tactics in your day-to-day, but with general managers having to wear so many hats, golf courses often lack a consistent multi-channel golf marketing strategy that is truly focused on things that generate revenue. If you’re a general manager, a head professional, or any golf course employee that has been tasked with developing a marketing plan, this guide is for you!
We’re going to take a comprehensive look at everything about golf course marketing from planning, to development, to execution. Whether you want to re-launch your brand, implement an automated marketing campaign, or optimize your website, you’ll find the answer here at Golf Guide Directory.
First we are going to ask you to have a look at your listing..
Go to: Golf Guide Girectory home page and search for your city and state, then click near me and see if your Listing is in the list.
Click on your course name and make sure your basic information is correct and then contact us with any changes you need to make.
What Is Golf Course Marketing?
Golf course marketing encompasses all of the actions taken by a golf course to generate awareness, develop a branded experience, sell tee times, advertise pro shop and restaurant items, and delight customers.
Golf courses typically use a mix of tools, channels, and strategies to accomplish their marketing and revenue generation goals.
Some marketing channels golf courses use include:
- Online booking
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- Pay per Click
- Word of mouth, and referrals
- Mobile app and SMS marketing
- Tee time distribution market places
- Traditional media such as radio, posters, television and out-of-home advertising.
The point of identifying each channel is to help create a specific set of tools and strategies for each one.
We will dive more deeply into each one later, but for now, these are the most common marketing channels we see golf courses putting to use.
The Golf Course Marketing Plan
Putting together a real marketing plan can be a daunting task.
Considering the amount of money you will ultimately pour into your marketing strategy and the amount of time it will take for you to see real results, you need to make sure you have a strong plan in place before you start.
A standard marketing plan typically spans the course of one year, and is divided by each quarter. This timeframe makes sense for golf courses, given their seasonality.
In order to consistently analyze organization-wide targets and key metrics, most companies align the beginning and end of their marketing plan with the beginning and end of their fiscal year.
How to build a golf course marketing plan.
State your golf course’s mission
- Define objectives and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for accomplishing this mission
- Develop a target audience description
- Promotion strategies and marketing channels
- Budget for the upcoming fiscal year
- Analyze competition within the local market
- Define roles and responsibilities
Your marketing plan is the jump-off point for creating a branding strategy. It develops a message, identifies marketing channels, and generates interest in your business.
Everything you do to market your golf course should be defined within your marketing plan, and while the plan above is concise and could go into much more detail, it is a good starting point for developing a better strategy.
Developing A Golf Course Branding Strategy
Before you go start your marketing campaign, you need to assess your branding strategy.
Understanding how your brand will fit within your golf course’s market is critical for planning your marketing strategy.
Not all courses are created equal and your golf course has a specific fit within your area’s golf market. Your branding tells the market who your audience is, the kinds of customers you expect to visit, and the overall experience these customers can expect when they come.
Pick the right branding and your fit within the market will come easily.
If you choose to not pay special attention to your brand, you risk confusing the market and losing customers. Or, you’ll attract the wrong kinds of people, people who won’t be coming back.
To develop a strong golf course brand you need to understand your ideal customer demographics, market position, and customer experience.
These three key areas.
Three key aspects of golf course branding
1. Ideal Customer Demographic
Whom are you trying to attract to your golf course? Do the features and benefits of your operation cater better to families, young people, seniors, or someone else?
Understanding who your customers are can help to identify marketing initiatives that enhance experiences, dictate ideal product offerings, and address the needs of that specific demographic.
2. Market Position
How is your golf course positioning itself within the market? Municipal courses create experiences that are open to all, whereas private clubs build their reputation on premium service and exclusivity.
Where your operation fits within the market depends on the Design of your facility, your physical location, and your history within the local community.
3. Customer Experience
Golf course brands are built on customer experiences. Customers have come to expect a certain quality of experience based on how much a round of golf costs, and how the media and their peers describe their past experiences.
For golf courses, especially those that offer a premium experience, every customer interaction builds your brand.
Finding The Right Target Demographic
Determining a target demographic takes some critical thinking. You need to consider how well your golf course suits the demographics needs, whether your offering is realistic or attractive, and whether this demographic is lucrative enough to be worth chasing.
If your golf course is in a premium location you may want to target wealthy individuals in a private setting, with traditional branding and product offerings.
However, if your golf course is in a competitive market and most golf courses serve senior citizens or wealthy elites, you may benefit more from targeting families and young people with a fun, less traditional, atmosphere.
In reality, there are many ways to brand your golf course. The key is taking the time to do your research and understand the best way to fit into your immediate market.
As you can already see, if you made it this far into the read, there is a lot of moving parts to Golf Course Marketing and At Golf Guide Directory we have years of experience in developing just the right plan to help a golf course reach their marketing goals.
We can do it all for a lot less than you might think too.
Let’s start a conversation about our cost effective Verified Partners Program and for less than $5 dollars a day we are your marketing team working 24/7
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