Call clubhouse. Sign up child/self for lesson program. Get email when to show up for lesson. Instructor gives group coaching information, then walks down the line up of golfers to correct swings.
Is it any wonder that people are constantly leaving the game? Beginning golfers are like little robots on an assembly line of instruction. Position your thumb here. Tuck in your elbow there. Put your weight on this foot. Bee Bop Boo Bop.
Have you ever thought about the experience of your customer? Do you build up their anticipation before the lesson even begins? What about after it’s over? How is your follow through when their lesson is complete? Are they still on your radar, or have they become one of the many forgotten golfers?
Here are Seven Ideas to breathe new life into your lesson program!
If your potential golfer can’t sign up right on your website for your lesson program, then you need to get with this century! Put a form on your website! Then, you need to take it one step further and make sure your Thank You Page is also interesting.
Create an interesting Thank You Page online that appears when they sign up for the program. If you already have one, does your Thank You Page simply say, “Thanks for signing up”?
How does that get the participant excited about your program?
What to Include:
1. Change the copy on your page. Include more inviting information on your Thank You Page by including a story about your program or a testimonial from someone who has participated before.
2. Include a button that allows them to share that they just signed up on their FB page or Twitter. When participants click that button, they have a pre-written post from you that directs their friends to the lesson page to get them to sign up.
3. Be yourself! Have you ever noticed that golf courses write like they are trying to attract the most boring person in the world? Get rid of your corporate speech, and write like you’re talking to a friend.
4. Tell them what they can expect next from you.
5. Include a link to your online store, so they can pay the fee and come to your first lesson prepared and ready to participate.
Write an email series that they get once a week when they sign up to participate. You can cover a wide range of subjects. This is a great way to introduce people to the game. Golf is much more than learning how to swing a club.
This email series might include information about the advantages to playing golf with your children or how it is a lifetime sport.
Provide some of the common mistakes that people make when they first take up the game and how to correct them.
Give links to where to find the best products. If you use Amazon, you can sign up to be an affiliate, and if the person purchases the products you recommend, you’ll even get a small commission! Say hello to free money!
Create a closed Private Facebook Group for your lesson participants.
A Private Facebook Group is one where you approve the people before they can join. In the settings, make sure you select the closed option and NOT the secret option. This allows people to be able to find the group, but you still approve them.
This is a safe community for golfers to be able to interact with one another and find local players. Many times (particularly for women), they don’t have friends who play golf, so much of the barrier is in finding a group of golfers.
Here, players can ask questions about the game and get information about learned behavior. This helps with the intimidation factor that is often present in the game. It’s a safe environment to ask questions they might feel uncomfortable asking at the golf course for fear of “looking stupid.”
Create short videos of instruction.
When you’re learning something new, it’s always hard to take in all of the information at once. If you create short videos that reinforce what you’re teaching, then participants can watch these at their leisure.
Upload the videos to YouTube, but set them to the private setting, so they can only be accessed by a special link.
Each week, send out an email and corresponding video that explains what they learned in the group setting. Provide drills they can practice at home to help improve their skills.
These videos can easily be made using your phone or tablet. They don’t have to be high quality productions. As long as you are providing good information, they will be appreciated by your lesson participants.
Hold a bootcamp for your instructors. At my course, I have two main instructors, but in the summer, we bring onboard our local high school’s golf coach, and his golf team assists with the lesson program.
We hold a bootcamp for all 20 members of the golf team to provide them tips on how to reinforce lessons. This helps to make sure everyone is instructing in a similar manner.
Each one of our junior golf sessions has over 100 golfers in it, so we require lots of hands-on help to make that happen. Junior golfers are grouped according to their skill set based on their years of experience, and then we separate them into groups of 10-15 students.
Each grouping of junior golfers has 2-3 high school golf team helpers who assist the main instructor/pro.
It’s a great way to instruct a large number of new lesson participants.
For our women-only lessons, we hold a training seminar where we look at different golf products and services and how to use them. For this, you might consider partnering with a local university/college women’s golf team. Use the team to help assist the women with their skills on the course.
Pay attention to who is instructing, and make sure their personalities are in line with your golf course’s. Learning from someone who doesn’t seem to enjoy their job will not translate into golfers who want to continue playing for years to come.
I have women in my program who have taken our women-only lessons five years or more in a row simply because they love their instructors and learn something new from them every year.
Don’t forget about follow up. Set up an automated email sequence for the conclusion of the experience to make sure the participants are being reminded to play golf, and give them the links again to your training videos.
It’s very easy to stop being engaged when you’re no longer actively participating in group lessons. A weekly or biweekly email reminder is a great way to gently nudge your lesson participants to continue to hone their golf skills.
To help with enticement, you might consider offering some sort of a comeback coupon or discount card that allows them to continue to play golf when their lessons are done. If your course is busy, you can make these offers good during designated times.
The key to creating golfers who stay with your golf course (and the game, in general) for the long haul is to get them on the actual course. Remove that intimidation factor, so they feel welcome and valued on the course.