Player Development

October 30, 2014

Use Get Golf Ready to Upgrade Memberships

zachary-wymanZachary Wyman, winner of the 2013 New England PGA Section Player Development Award/President’s Plaque and the 2012 Vermont PGA Chapter Teacher of the Year, is the PGA director of player development and sales at Vermont National Country Club in South Burlington, Vermont.

Zachary Wyman on the importance of using Get Golf Ready to upgrade memberships:
I’ve worked at Vermont National since 1998 and wanted to try to grow the game here at our club. I felt that the best way to do that wasn’t to reach out for new members, but rather get our current members more involved. I convinced our owner to allow me to dedicate my days to growing our club’s golfers by reaching out to our social members, inactive spouses and children of active golfing members, and, most specifically, females. I started offering Get Golf Ready last February. Because most of Vermont is still under snow at that time, I held the first few clinics in the club dining room. We mostly discussed the ins and outs of the club, the game, etiquette and Rules, but we also covered fundamentals of the swing and used rubber balls indoors. These first few sessions were successful because it allowed non-golfers to become more comfortable with the club and game and by the time spring rolled around,┬ámany of the students came out to practice on the range and play. I also offered an accelerated program for mothers in which the clinics were completed over three days (six hours in all). In addition, I offered 20-30 drop-in clinics per month, many of which were well-attended. Some of these drop-in sessions were targeted only to women or parents and children and we received tremendous feedback. I also offered all-day junior clinics (9 a.m.-4 p.m.) where we would cover Rules, swing fundamentals and even meal etiquette during lunch, such as how to order properly, washing hands after being on the range or course, and so on.

Zachary Wyman on the business impact of using Get Golf Ready to upgrade memberships:
The Get Golf Ready clinics and other player development programs that I enacted have been an amazing success for our facility. Due to the programs that targeted either non-golfing members or family members of golfing members, we were able to upgrade eight single memberships to couples memberships and five to family memberships. And all but two of the upgrading members were women. I was able to reach out to these non-golfing members through our clubwide email service and through our member website where I included a calendar of events for our player development programs. I strongly suggest to PGA Professionals working at private or semi-private facilities to concentrate on your non-golfing members in addition to new members, as this market can be a real boon to your business.

If you would like to email the author of this Best Practice directly, please email ZackW@vnccgolf.com

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