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September 18, 2020

Tom Morton: Use Groupon to Drive New Customers to Your Facility

Tom Morton, the 2014 PGA Youth Player Development Award Recipient and 2017 PGA Player Development Award Recipient, is the PGA Director of Coaching and Development at Morton Golf, in Sacramento, California.

Tom Morton on the importance of using Groupon to drive new customers to your facility:

For any business to thrive, you need to attract new customers on a regular basis, in addition to retaining your existing clients, of course. At Haggin Oaks, we feel once we have them “in the door”, we offer the services and provide the experience and excitement to retain them for the long-haul. One way we attract new customers is to partner with Groupon in offering participation in our New2Golf program at a discounted rate. For the past 5 or 6 years we have been offering two 90-minute group clinics for $15 on the popular global e-commerce marketplace, welcoming 12-15 students per session. In a unique practice, proving to be highly successful for us over the years, we utilize some of our longtime customers and students who have been in and around the game for several years to facilitate the sessions, keeping our costs to a minimum and reserving our golf professionals’ time to be the next step in these new golfers’ evolution. In addition, our New2Golf “coaches” have been in similar situations as the participants they now teach, creating a unique bond or connection that is not always manifested between golf professional and student. To ensure the right topics are covered – subjects like golf terminology, what’s what at our facility, how to get range balls or a tee time, and the parts of a golf course – our coaches use a curriculum I have prepared to most effectively engage our facility’s newest students. It’s a popular program that has grown participation in our player development program, but the partnership with Groupon has brought it to more individuals than any newspaper or traditional avenue type advertisement could.


Tom Morton on the business impact of using Groupon to drive new customers to your facility:

Our New2Golf program has been around for a decade and has been effective method of getting new students and golfers. A successful program supported by a proven method of marketing it to new golfers, we are proud of the results we’ve had over the years. As mentioned, we normally average 12 to 15 students per session, amounting to hundreds of participants each year. Retaining even a fraction of those individuals for long-term instruction, league participation, or added rounds can boost revenues across the facility. The key to this success is looking beyond the $15 initial price tag and forecasting the continued revenue stream that each retained golfer means to the bottom line. The New2Golf program and discount offering on Groupon are a special opportunity for us to get in front of an array of new golfers for what we hope is the start of a long-term, progressive educational experience.


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