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April 4, 2012

Susan Roll: Schedule a Healthy Number of Clinics on the Range

Susan Roll, the 2011 PGA Merchandiser of the Year for Public Facilities, is a PGA and LPGA Professional and co-owner of Carlsbad Golf Center in Carlsbad, Calif.

Susan Roll on the importance of scheduling a healthy number of clinics on the range:
We host upwards of 50 classes a month in various areas of our practice facility. Drop-in, one-hour classes require no pre-registration and are scheduled at the same day and time every week for juniors, seniors, women, men and adults. We also hold specialty clinics with titles such as “Wedgucation” and “Driver’s Ed” for golfers who want to work on a specific part of their game. With as many as four events on some days, it is important to have everything mapped out well in advance for both staff and customers. We make it easy for our customers to mark the dates for events they want to attend by posting a calendar on our website, which includes dates, time and details on every event we offer. We also keep a print copy of the calendar available in the pro shop. We plan our calendars about a month in advance and post them about 10 days prior to the upcoming month. We also post reminders on Facebook and send semi-monthly email newsletters that include the schedule to remind people about classes, because we know a lot of people decide to attend at the last minute.

Susan Roll on the business impact of scheduling a healthy number of clinics on the range:
On average, we have approximately 600 page views a month for the website calendar, so golfers are certainly doing their research to see when we are offering certain clinics. Featuring so many clinics creates thousands of all-important facility visits as people come for the classes themselves, and also return to practice, make purchases in the pro shop, or introduce friends or family to golf. We have also found that group clinics provide an inexpensive way for students to “test” different instructors, which often leads to private lessons. Clinics also provide a way for our pro shop professional staff to not only generate revenue for the facility, but also to create rapport and trust with golfers who will turn to our team when it’s time for new clubs and other gear.