Historically, golf has been seen as a men’s sport. But nowadays that mentality is changing, and you need to make sure that all members understand that women as the same right to golf as any. And have fun in the process, too.
It is true that 75% of the golfers that use tee time booking software are men. But imagine if you could increase female participation in the course! If the same amount of women book rounds as men, the revenues will increase by around 47%.
Therefore, we need to help close the gap and erase the large cultural and discriminative issue in the golf community about female golfers. Even when it takes hard work to change the culture in a clubhouse, we can take some practical steps to get women interested in golf and playing at your course.
Host camps and lessons for young women
In order to attract females to the game, we have to make them love the game since they are young and start early with teaching and instruction.
A good idea to do that is to host a summer camp to get them started while giving a break to parents during the summer holidays. Maybe they will leave their young ones in the camp and pick them up later, but a plus is that parents involved in these summer camps are likely to be golfers too and take the opportunity to play a quick game. Or maybe they will hit the restaurant while waiting. Anyway, it will be an extra for the club.
Be sure to find female leadership for the summer camp: young girls will be more inspired and willing to learn if they have a female coach. Keep in mind that it makes a huge difference in keeping them interested in the game because they are going to see her as a role model.
Organize events related to women in golf
Social events are great to attract new customers, so why not do one, especially for women? Maybe a “Wine and 9” night, Mother-Daughter tournaments, family events, or even a charity tournament is a good moment to get women playing at your golf course.
The key is to remark that your club values women in the community and seeks to organize social events interesting and fun for them. If you can get them to have a positive attitude towards your course, you can expand your customer base immensely and improve your brand image.
Implement an special “Bring a Friend” discount
Maybe you have already this option for your loyal customers, but what if you make the price lower if the friend is a woman? There’s a good chance that members want to introduce a female friend or family member to the golf course, so a discount to guests who bring in a female player for the first time will be good for business.
If this first-time experience leaves a lasting good impression on that new golfer, maybe she will come back for a second round, or encourage her to take private lessons.
Remember that you can target this campaign to costumers groups using the CRM in your golf club management software integrated with e-commerce and marketing platforms.
Create a golf program at local schools
Do you want to attract young girls to the game? Then, it is a pretty good idea to start early. Offer a golf program to the local schools and you will see how you will get mass exposure to your golf course.
The obvious drawback is that students are not going to buy course rounds or memberships, but maybe their parents will. And you can always introduce value with the free course: if a parent buys a membership, you may offer a free junior membership to his child. Or offer an important discount if a student of your golf program participates in parent-child rounds.
However, be sure to specify that your golf program is unisex and girls are welcome to it. A good idea is to send a female golfer to school to talk with the candidates interested. Of course, this is a long-term strategy, but your course will be greatly benefited from the exposure to your local community.
Organize a Women’s Golf Day Event
In case you don’t know, Women’s Golf Day is an international initiative to get more women interested in golf. It takes place in many golf courses worldwide in June, so be sure to join this movement.
The event will help to promote both your golf club and the local female talent that uses it. A tournament is in order in this case, that will generate healthy competition between female golfers for the years to come. Use hashtags related to Women’s Golf Day to announce the event in your social media strategy to get female golfers involved and increase your followers.
A Women’s Golf Day event will typically include four hours long and feature two hours of golf, and then two hours of socializing. During the golf session, it takes place a nine-hole round, some lessons, a club fitting, a product demo, or a practice session on the driving range. Then, participants socialize over drinks and food, maybe with a presentation of a guest speaker or some corporate networking elements.
If you plan it right, you will impress a lot of potential female customers.
Offer significant discounts on golf lessons for women
Without a shadow of a doubt, golf is very demanding skill-wise. The learning curve is steep: mastering the basics can take years of practice. Then, you need to make sure that lessons are less expensive for the people that really need them.
If you want to attract female newbies to golf, you need to reduce the cost of lessons, making the initial steps easier to take. This way, there’s also a higher chance that new golfers will be eager to acquire the basic skills they need to finally face a round at the course with dignity.
Promote an #inviteHER Culture
#inviteHER is an initiative recently set up by the LPGA to invite women into the game. Even a simple invitation is capable of making someone willing to try something new, so the initiative targets to increase female participation in golf.
The initiative website provides lots of resources for both golfers and course operators to encourage women to get into the game. Toolkits, e-Books, and lots of advice for making the course friendlier to women can be downloaded. As golf manager, you can also register and host an #inviteHER event: the initiative will help you with free marketing and planning tools.