We’re doing something a little different for our golfers this year.
I can’t remember where I heard about this, but our marshals are going around and, if they see a great shot out there or somebody doing something over and above – like raking two or three bunkers, for example – that golfer will receive a poker chip.
When the chip is awarded, the marshal will say, `Nice shot,’ or `Thanks for your help,’ followed by, `Have a burger on us.’
For us, it’s a little bit different and we’ve just got to be sure we don’t give away too many poker chips and blow the budget, but I think it’s something our golfers will remember.
I think, historically, golf hasn’t done a lot of that. We probably haven’t had to because the game has, historically, been so strong, but if golf was a different industry, I don’t think it would be as successful because of the lack of customer service. That might sound a little harsh, but I think we can all do better.
Right now, with the way the economy is and with a gazillion golf courses out there, everybody’s fighting for business. I think we all have to be on our games.
Everybody’s battling for the same discretionary funds and golfers’ dollars, so it’s great to find something that sets us apart and doesn’t cost us a lot.
It’s not in our budget to do a lot of advertising and promotions, so we’ve got to do some things in-house. If people leave with a smile on their faces, the chances of them coming back are much better and they may even tell their friends.
Hopefully, there’s a ripple effect that will lead to more rounds played through a simple but effective act of appreciation on the part of the golf course.