Give me £1000!!! Really? Why not? – Try building trust and a relationship first.

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One of the biggest mistakes golf clubs make when they go looking for new members is to leap straight into a hard sell of the full membership package. I’ve heard many clubs tell me that marketing doesn’t work. This is incorrect. What tends not to work is the message that golf clubs put on their marketing. Focus on the possible relationship rather than the financial gain.

Join Now! Just £1000 for a limited time only! – we’ve all seen things like this and is it really a surprise that people don’t come flocking to the doors of the club with open wallets? How about getting to know people first? Introduce them to the golf club with something which isn’t even to do with golf. You might be pleasantly surprised at the response.

One option could be a gin evening. In the past five years gin sales in the UK have more than doubled (Source : Thedrinksbusiness.com) to £1.5 billion. Varieties of gin are growing and more and more people are giving it a try – that £1.5 billion equates to approximately 55 million bottles!

Inviting someone to an event like this may be much more successful in getting them to your golf club. There is no hard sell, it is a fun event, you can use the evening to get to know people and you’ve taken the first steps in building a relationship. If they like the event then they will automatically receive any further communications from you in a positive manner.

This does not mean an immediate follow up with a membership offer!

Build the relationship, thank them for coming, highlight other events and start to learn about people so you can tailor what you send to them. They may never become members but you have shown them your club and given them a reason to be happy to engage in further communications. They may consider the club for an event they may be planning, they will almost certainly mention it to their friends and a positive recommendation from a friend can go a long way towards driving more business.

There are loads of ways to encourage people to start to interact with your golf club and this is just one of them.

For more ideas go to the Golf Club Marketing Resource website.

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