By Gary Firkins, Founding Director

 

I’m surprised more golf clubs, resorts and courses don’t consider rebranding.

Look around. So many venues present themselves in the same way: golf course, clubhouse, pro shop, practice… a one-way description of near identical amenities.

Many golf clubs I speak to mistakenly think their brand is their logo, not the promise of a customer experience or the story of what makes them different or special.

Private golf clubs are not golf courses, they’re communities of people – and the value of membership is being part of that community.

At one club we rebranded, all it had was a logo, a dated website and a membership application form. That was it.

If you asked staff what they were selling, they would give you a list of amenities, primarily the golf course – not the experience and benefits of membership.

That club now has a brand model, positioning statement and consistent brand messaging for all its communications.

It also has collateral to help tell (and sell) its brand story and customer experience: videos, presentations, events, a new website and even a hardback book with testimonial quotes from members about why they love their club.

The logo – or brand identity – was not the real issue.

There are different reasons and times to rebrand, including:

Repositioning

When you are moving the market position of your venue, perhaps on the back of investment or an upgrade.

Targeting new customers

Maybe you wish to target specific customers or segments, including females and families, and need your brand to reflect and appeal to those new audiences.

Retaining customers

Perhaps there has been poor engagement with members or the venue has suffered with a negative reputation and you want to 1) retain customers 2) enhance loyalty 3) signal a fresh start.

Acquisition is another appropriate time to consider rebranding, especially if the business model is changing.

At all times, it should be primarily with customers in mind.

At too many golf venues little thought goes into branding because there is not enough focus on the customer and the experiences they want and need.

So it’s imperative to understand your customer and the value proposition – and then rebrand in a strategic, systematic and process-led way.

If you’d like to learn more about Landmark’s strategic approach to rebranding, contact me at gary@landmark-media.com