If you aren’t taking advantage of the holiday season, then you must not like making easy money. Golf courses are notorious for their lack of marketing skills. That’s what makes marketing for the holiday season so easy for a golf course. The media does the marketing for you. Everyone knows about Black Friday and Cyber Monday. The public just needs to be told that you’re participating. You can be pretty successful with very little effort or marketing know how.
This is a huge gift (pun intended) to golf course operators. Basically, you just have to deliver something that is worthy of gift giving and you’ll be profitable. The best part about a holiday promotion is that the mentality to spend money in our customers is already created for you. Your golfers and more importantly, your golfer’s loved ones, are programmed to spend money on these two days.
You just have to do SOMETHING!
Sometimes I wonder if I’m old or if I’m just so busy doing golf course stuff that I forget to notice the rest of the world. I’ve been blogging on my golf course’s website for about three years. Mostly, I have used it as a way to get to know my golfers better and to help them get to know me. I give them background information of all the fun jobs we’re doing behind the scenes.
Last year, I kind of hit a brick wall when it came to my blogging. I just felt like I was doing it all wrong, and I all but stopped blogging entirely. Yes, we still had funny things happening at the golf course, but I just didn’t take the time to grab my camera and snap a few photos of my superintendent falling into the pond when he was trying to fix the water aerator like I once had. That may have been because I was too busy laughing, now that I think about it.
I began searching for some ideas on what to blog about at my course to try and help me get my rhythm back.
Then, I fell down a giant rabbit hole known as the internet.
Hey! Today’s post is going to be short, but it’ll pack a heavy punch!
We’re talking about branding today. It’s important for you to have an overall “look” for your golf course. You want all of your marketing materials to look the same, font use consistent, logos, and theme of your business to be cohesive in all areas – right down to your training materials.
The trouble with keeping a consistent look is that you are probably dealing with a number of designers, staff members, and others who play a role in your marketing and worksheet/flyer creation. They are looking for the colors you use and your font selection, but often just do what they want because you don’t have something specific in place.
That’s right. Facebook is everyone’s favorite big brother. Watching our every move. On a positive note, at least Facebook doesn’t fart in your face every time you walk by as my brother did to me.
That’s right folks. My brother is ten years older than I am, so I spent a majority of my childhood being significantly shorter than he was.
For his own pre-teen and teenager humor, he literally farted in my face EVERY SINGLE TIME he passed me. As I grew, he even mastered the Jump and Aim Fart, so the fun could extend a few more years.
It was always a proud moment for my parents.
The good news is that my brother is now in his 50’s, so he can only get about an inch of air time. I sure do hope his daughters allow me to pick his nursing home, though.
If you’re anything like me, when someone starts talking about Landing Pages your eyes glaze over and you start thinking about the laundry you forgot to take out of the washer from three days ago or you wonder if you left the oven on. You know. Important stuff takes over your brain.
Seriously, though. What in the world is a Landing Page?
They are so frequently referred to when you talk to a website person that I was kind of afraid to ask. I felt like that kid in math class where everyone understands exactly how 4=2x solves as 2 and I was left scratching my head wondering. Do I raise my hand to ask the question? Am I the dumb kid in the room?
Since I have looked at hundreds of golf course websites, I can feel quite comfortable that I have found my tribe.
The people who know absolutely NOTHING about Landing Pages. Thanks, Golf Course Operators.
It’s time to fix that! I’m raising my hand and giving you a big fat explanation of why you need to have a landing page for your golf course.
Let me paint you a picture.
It’s the end March. My golf course is just coming out of winter. We haven’t made much money in the last three months (yay for northern states!) and my property taxes are due. No. Not property taxes to the tune of $5,000. We’re talking PROPERTY TAXES to the tune of $60,000+. In other words, some serious cash.
I’ll be honest with you. For some reason, owning a golf course gives the public perception that you pretty much have more money than you know what to do with yourself. I think people have always assumed that we stuff our mattresses with all of our leftover cash.
That, sadly, is not the case. I’m ok with that since I, personally, think that sleeping on a wad of cash sounds incredibly uncomfortable.
Back to why you need an Online Shop…
In my previous post, I discussed the advantages to having a blog on your website. It’s a great way to set yourself apart from other golf courses in your area. Telling stories about the events and activities taking place around your course helps to validate you and gives automatic characteristics to your golf course. It’s your online first impression.
When you first begin writing on your blog, you might experience a little writers block. That’s where I come in. I’m here to help!
The best way to begin is to record yourself having a conversation with a golfer, vendor or staff member. That will help you determine your voice. You are a human, so you want to write how you’d speak to your golfer when they arrive at your course.
Finding your voice is where you determine your copywriting style. If you’re having a hard time, then look at the type of advertising you produce. Is it formal with slogans? What is the stage that you have set for your first impression? Are you a casual greeter? Do you have a nickname you use with golfers?
I’ve been blogging on my golf course’s website for about three years. Since I began, I have developed a relationship with my golfers that simply didn’t exist before.
When they see me in the clubhouse, they’ll stop me and talk to me about something that I have written or ask me a question about a topic that’s been covered.
Blogging has helped to establish my golf course as an expert in many areas. It has also made me be a human in my golfer’s eyes. I am very open and candid with the activities that take place around the golf course. Golfers have a better understanding of what exactly goes in to providing a quality golf course.
Blogging is a great platform to explain processes that might otherwise not seem relatable to your average golfer.
When designing your website, it should be an extension of your relationship with your golfer that you have when they are greeted at the door. Are you more formal? Relaxed and easy going? What is the language that you and your staff use with your golfers? You’ll want that language to translate to your blog.
Let’s face it, there are many different types of golfers out there. Some golfers are avid with low scores and enjoy a challenge. Then, there are some who enjoy the game, but have never really mastered it.
I’ve been working at my family’s golf course since I was eleven. I can remember waiting on golfers at the snack bar for years, assuming they were good golfers. When I was eighteen, I began mowing the fairways and tee-boxes. Imagine my surprise when it turned out that these golfers who played nearly daily for the last seven years of my life turned out to be HORRIBLE golfers!
Step away from your desk and take a look at your golfers. Get to know them and their skill level!
You need to really dial in the type of golfer your course attracts. Without this information, you’re wasting valuable time and money in your marketing.
It seems like a minor detail, doesn’t it? The About Page on your website. Your golf course’s name and designer. Maybe your location. Number of holes. Description of other amenities.
Bulleted points about your business.
In other words. BOOOORRRRING…
Your About Page should be the first impression of your business. It’s your tuxedo. Your glimmery dress of the internet. It should give your golfers and other patrons the first glimpse into the experience they will have when coming to your facility. Paint a picture! When you meet someone for the first time, you take some extra time on your hair or pick out your favorite shirt or maybe you’re like my husband and always make sure your belt and shoes match.
The same care should be made when writing your About Page.
It sets the stage for you and your golf course. It gives your customers a glimpse into what they will experience when they come to your golf course. Are you a boring bulleted list?
No. I didn’t think so.
Your About Page is one of the most visited pages on your website.