Shaun Bezilla, the 2013 Michigan PGA Section Youth Player Development Award winner and Golf Professional of the Year, is the PGA Head Professional at Harbor Point Golf Club in Harbor Springs, Michigan.
Shaun Bezilla on the importance of hosting golf ball fittings on the range:
As PGA Professionals, the more face-to-face engagement we have with members, the more enhanced their member experience is. These relationships add greatly to our value as leaders at our facilities. As a golf shop owner, the connections I foster on a daily basis directly affect our shop’s bottom line. So, any opportunity we have to speak with members, play with them or just share our expertise, should be embraced. We recently conducted our first-ever golf ball fitting in conjunction with one of the biggest golf ball manufacturers in the industry. Working with my sales rep, we invited members to come to the range and take some swings at a variety of golf ball offerings. Based on their handicap and breadth of experience in the game, members hit an assortment of golf balls ranging from a harder, mid-priced ball to the top-of-the-line premium ball that is the number one golf ball on the PGA TOUR. We used our launch monitor for analysis with some of the participants, and simply had others try the different golf balls on the range to view ball flight, as well as near our putting green to see how they react when chipped and pitched onto the putting surface. We asked probing questions of the golfers to further help determine the optimal ball for them. Similar to the more traditional golf club demo day and custom clubfitting events, members enjoy trying the wide array of equipment they see advertised on the weekend PGA TOUR telecast. These events give them that opportunity. And the free golf ball samples often handed out by sales reps and vendors don’t hurt either.
Shaun Bezilla on the business impact of hosting golf ball fittings on the range:
We had a decent turnout for the event and look forward to attracting an even larger group of members next time. After all, I think it’s beneficial for my members to hear consistent messaging from industry professionals other than just me. It validates what I’ve told them over the years and offers yet another service that we can provide. As of now, we can’t really gauge the direct impact on golf shop revenues, as the event was very recent and the rep was handing out sample sleeves anyway. The impact on our business comes from the service provided, engagement enjoyed and knowledge shared with our members. The more facets of the business they see me in – teaching, fitting, selling, running events, managing staff – the more they will seek my involvement in all their golfing endeavors and will participate in events and support our golf shop.
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