The Visitor Experience
MAKING THE MOST OF GUESTS & VISITORS
It’s always useful to exactly define and categorise your ‘visitors’.
Golf venues have varied types of visitors throughout each day and its important to make a positive impression with each and everyone - as everyone has the potential to become positive advocates for your venue.
However in terms of the Visitor Experience the focus is on those visitors engaged in playing the course and paying a green fee:
- Member Guest
- Paying Visitor
- Golf Tour/Group
- Corporate Golf Day
Each are charged some sort of green fee and each are there to play golf primarily.
Club members want to be able to invite guests to enjoy the club’s hospitality and atmosphere. Whatever the reason for the invitation it’s important to welcome any guest by making them feel valued and ensure their visit is rewarding at all levels.
By carefully managing the ‘member’s guests experience’ its possible to achieve the following:
- Please the member concerned and confirm their association with a great course (Reinforcing any decision to renew membership)
- Create an additional advocate, who will hopefully relay their positive impressions to others
- Possibly convert a guest into returning as a member or corporate client
These non-affiliated players often pay the full rack rate and here the focus is on creating an enjoyable experience and confirming positive perceptions.
Paying visitors are important to your club and by enhancing their ‘visit experience’ you can:
- Help add value to you tariff
- Differentiate your venue from competing courses
- Earn repeat business
- Encourage the casual visitor to become a member
Consider your offering in comparison to competitor courses to help differentiate your advantages and play to your strengths.
These guests are often frequenting multiple courses on a tour and over a season and so meet a wide variety of other players.
Creating a positive experience for this golfing category helps to promote your course as the ideal venue for future tours and golf days – somewhere to return to for a great day’s golf.
Corporate Golf Days
Although corporate golf events are featured elsewhere - the standard ‘visitor experience’ is an ideal marketing opportunity to not only recruit potential corporate golf day business but also to position your venue as having the status, facilities and experience to successfully host well run corporate events.
DIFFERENT ASPECTS OF A VISITOR EXPERIENCE
Arriving at a new golf venue can be a daunting prospect.
To help ensure a positive visitor experience - its important to try to anticipate their perceptions and identify their needs all of which will help in making your club more accessible to them.
We’ve approached a typical visitor experience through three key stages to be considered, separately or collectively to enhance your guests’ overall experience:
- Post Play
First impressions count, setting the tone for either a positive or negative experience.
Pre-arrival guidance is all important along with friendly reinforcement once at the club with personal greetings, well managed registration together with clear signage for parking, bag drop (if available?) and locker room.
Registration first is a golden rule, giving you the opportunity to brief visitors about the course, club facilities and social areas. (all revenue earning opportunities).
Consider inviting your visitors to:
- Enjoy the retail experience / pro-shop for souvenirs and equipment. (Some visitors may not be aware of the range of crested items that are available to purchase)
- Visit the locker room experience
- Explore the range facilities
The centre-point of the day is of course playing the course providing endless opportunities to differentiate your club.
First Tee gifts can come in various forms – for immediate use or to be retained as a commemorative item.
- Items can be personalised in advance of play, either using our rapid stock programme or our ‘in-store personalisation’ options to increase the perceived value of the gift
- Alternatively items can be personalised post-play - encouraging players to revisit the retail experience
- By highlighting items as part of the First Tee gift, selected from your extensive retail collection you can encourage guests to purchase additional items post-play
Play – Locker Room Experience
A well managed and presented Locker Room Experience can form a surprisingly interesting and memorable part of the overall Visitor Experience.
FLocker Room availability for guests is always a plus point but incorporating placement of useful items such as: crested garment carriers, shoe care kits or shoe horns can help reinforce your welcome and delight guests with the quality and attention to detail of your accessories and gifts – creating the right impression!
Play – Buggy Experience
Having buggies available for guests is always a positive experience. Whether provided as part of the green fee or as an additional charge the experience of playing golf with a buggy can be enhanced through the placement of gift items within the buggy.
As part of our recommended ‘buggy experience’ we include:
- Personalized crested hand-towel
- First tee pack
- Divot tool, ball marker, tees and pencil
Prior to departure guests should be encouraged to revisit the Retail Experience to review the ranges and collections on offer. It’s important to use this opportunity to ensure your visitors are fully aware of what you have to offer. Don’t forget to feature:
- Membership marketing literature
- Visitor tariff
- Details on competitions, corporate or social events
- Fitting Experience promotions
- Retail offers
A carefully planned and well-coordinated Visitor Experience has the potential to dramatically differentiate your club, encourage membership and increase your revenue streams.
Your Own Brand’s unique approach to the Visitor Experience is inspiring and motivating venues all over the world.