December 31, 2012

Bradley Mills: Host Cookouts to Showcase Your Facility

Bradley-MillsBradley Mills is the owner and manager of Big Swing Golf Center in Sewell, N.J.

Bradley Mills on the importance of hosting cookouts to showcase your facility:
Big Swing Golf Center was a foreclosed business from 2008-2010 with a horrible reputation, especially from a family point of view. It was dirty and grimy, and in many places the infrastructure was falling apart. So we’ve spent the last two years rebuilding our name and the trust with the community. Six times this past summer we hosted Friday night cookouts, which served both as a low-cost outing for families and as an opportunity to show off all the changes we’ve made to Big Swing. It costs $8 per person for mini-golf and the cookout, compared with $6 normally for just mini-golf. What we found is that people were genuinely surprised to see the revamped facility; they seemed really excited about amenities offered, and discovered that we are not just a driving range, but a place for the whole family. For example, Mom and Dad can hit balls while the kids can play mini-golf. And because we provided them an opportunity to see the changes firsthand, they can feel sure that the kids won’t hurt themselves on a mini-golf course in disrepair.

Bradley Mills on the business impact of hosting cookouts to showcase your facility:
The business impacts have been widespread. First of all, the cookouts were a success. There was a 34-percent increase in mini-golf sales from the Friday nights that contained cookouts from the Friday nights that did not. And overall, our facility has seen a 32-percent increase in mini-golf sales from our first year here to our second. In addition, we’ve booked three birthday parties because of these cookouts, and our overall foot costs didn’t put a dent in the overall financial benefit of the events.