It’s now 2011 and where are we? Are the Jetson’s zipping around the galaxy yet? Do we all have our own personal robot to carry out our mundane chores? Nope, sorry. Social media hasn’t even reached it’s peak yet! That’s why I would like to revisit our post from last year on Social Media and the Modern Golf Professional and how it has evolved to this point right now in 2011.
Is Social Media Actually Working for Golf Professionals?
This past year, we have talked to and worked with many, many golf professionals who have tried using social media (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc.) in an effort to help their business. Some golf pro’s use a Facebook Fan Page for their business, while others just use their personal Facebook page to help advertise their business. A few golf professionals are trying to get more business from their Twitter account. Some golf pro’s have found great success while others haven’t noticed one bit of change. Most pro’s have noticed the large amount of time that it takes to acquire any business from social media outlets. So what’s the secret? What’s all this buzz around social media if no one is actually seeing results? Is it even worth getting into? Well, we want to give you some helpful information that will help you determine which social media strategy is right for you.
Let’s Break it Down for You.
You’re a golf professional. You are busy. You don’t have time to sit in front of the computer all day and “tweet” about what you ate for lunch or try to surpass the 500 friend mark on Facebook. You just want more lessons, right? You want to keep your teaching book filled to the brim! OR if you’re more concerned with getting more golfers on your course – then you just want to see a full tee sheet. So here are a few steps to determine what is right for you PLUS we’re giving you the best form of social media that you can use right now.
Lesson 1: Define Your Audience
Who is it that you want to engage? What kind of customers are you after? If you’re a leading junior instructor and you want more junior lessons, than Facebook just might help you with that. If you’re looking to book up your Tuesday morning tee sheet – then your audience is probably the retired crowd. Do you really think they are on Twitter?
Lesson 2: Research Your Audience
Lets say you just figured out that you want to target golfers living within your city that are between the ages of 25 – 40. This is probably a high tech group, with extra income, but not much time to come out and play during the week. So your research will start on the weekends. Talk to the weekend crowd, offer incentives for filling out surveys, collect their personal information to store in your database, ask for their email address and twitter name, ask them to “like” your Facebook fan page, ask what beer they like, simply find out what they want and what will keep them coming back!
Lesson 3: Determine a Social Media Outlet
So now that you know who your audience is and what it is that they want – find out the best way to get in front of them. If your target is seniors – then magazine and newspaper ads will probably be more effective. If your crowd is younger and more tech-savvy, then get yourself a Facebook fan page. If you think the “professional crowd” is more willing to come to your course then set up a LinkedIn account and start sending invitations.
Lesson 4: Offer Something Real
In the world of social media it’s all too easy to see who acutally cares about something and who doesn’t. If you don’t actually care about your customers and just want them to buy your stuff, then shame on you. That customer will pick up on your true motives and stop coming to you! You need to care about your customers/clients and you need to let them know. The offers you make and the ads you run will reflect the type of response you get. Basically, treat your customers how you would want to be treated! After someone becomes a fan, then give them a reward. After they “re-tweet” your message, show them some love back. Social media is NOT a one-way street.
Lesson 5: Keep up with Your Social Media
The worst thing you can do is start a social media profile, then never update it! Your fans will expect to see consistent messages and updates. If you don’t deliver on being consistent, then you will lose more friends than not. A good tip: the consistency of your updates is almost more important than the quality of your updates.
The BEST Social Media tool that Golf Professionals Use Right Now
Do you know what it is? It’s not Facebook, nor is it Twitter. It’s something that we all use everyday – even the stodgiest of golf professionals. It’s e-mail. E-mail continues to be the first and foremost point of digital contact for golf professionals. It’s been around for a long time, it’s trusted, it’s accepted, and it’s easily accessible. No one doubts the effectiveness of e-mail anymore – it’s simply a standard. If you don’t have an e-mail address by now, you’re well out of the loop!
Stay tuned for our next post on why E-mail Marketing is still the most effective advertising tool that you should be doing right now.