Today, I was thinking about golf course design vs golf marketing and a question popped into my mind. If you were going to own your own course, which way would you go? The course you’re buying is located on a huge body of water, we will say a Great Lake, the few holes that run along it, are featureless and somewhat blah. Beautiful view though. You have a bunch on inland holes, incredible topography, strategic design, fun to play, but no view of the lake. How would you handle golf marketing of your course?
- Choice A: Sell the view
- Choice B: Sell the golf
Golf Marketing by View
By choosing to sell the view, you have made a decision that people don’t really care about fun golf, they just want to see pretty things. You assume Instagram photos and colored brochures of your boring lake side holes will create a compelling enough reason for people to play. Very few people have seen a lake edge, I’m sure they would want to see yours. And pay a nice price to do so!
Golf Marketing by Feature
By choosing the inland great golf, you have made the decision that people prefer to play cool topography. They can appreciate a designers maximization of features. You think people will get such a rise out of strategic golf, that being on the lake is really just an after thought. It is your belief that people can see a coastline anywhere, but these collections of holes can only be found in one spot in the entire world, and you should highlight the hell out of it?
So what’s your decision? Are you a pretty place to drop $75, or are you a unique golf design worthy of dropping $75?
I guess there is no right answer. Much of this comes down to the vision of the owner himself. A property is generally exactly what the owner wants it to be. Then again maybe its the vision of the marketing person trying to figure out what it should be. Maybe it’s the vision of the each head pro as your poorly run course has been through 5 of them in the last 8 years. What if no one has figured out you have a great lake setting, or awesome topography inland, then you wonder is there anyone with vision?
If you are going to be successful, you need to KNOW exactly what you have, and you need to find the people who WANT exactly what you have. And you need patience too. Probably the hardest part….