Golf is an individual sport
Richard Payne (Pictured), senior manager at SPORTS MARKETING SUREVEYS INC., offers some research data to emphasise the importance for golf clubs and pro shops to understand their customers, and how to appeal to them
“Whilst understanding the trends and state of the market can help contextualise performance, the true strength of research is getting behind the minds of your consumer and teasing out what motivates them.”
This statement, above, might be obvious but it is worth remembering that “NOT ALL GOLFERS ARE THE SAME”. The golden days whereby “we build it and they will come” have long since disappeared, and the reality of golf as a sport today is people do not consider it as a ‘must-do’ weekly activity, but that it is a sport competing with a myriad of other pastimes, from cycling, gardening or computer games, to simply spending more time at home with the family.
To succeed, golf courses, retailers and manufacturers need to understand and appreciate the different wants and needs of each golfer, rather than just pushing the same product to all and hoping it sticks.
Now, we aren’t talking ‘Big Brother’ here, but there is a rationale for why mega retailers such as Tesco and Sainsbury’s have loyalty cards, and that certainly isn’t purely to give back to the consumer. The data they receive from card holders enables supermarkets to compile customer profiles to minute detail.
In a previous GOLF RETAILING Data Report, the differences between smart phone ownership and app downloads was highlighted, with younger golfers – unsurprisingly – being the most likely to own and use both. This is one example of how the age of a golfer differentiates their behaviour, yet as an operator or retailer, identifying the differences between segments such as age, gender and playing ability is critical to your business.
In the bar
The nuances between these sub-groups vary from what motivates them to them play more golf, to what drink they prefer after a round.
In the shop
In terms of retailing, the specific motivations behind what different golfers want from the various equipment categories is also critical in ensuring pro shops are stocked with the right product make-up for its customer base, and that promotions are highlighting the right key factors for the right audience.
Separating golfers by their handicap category, we asked how important the following factors are when deciding what golf ball to purchase, on a scale of 1-5 (where 1 is not at all important and 5 is very important)
Lastly, here is a bar chart that illustrates the differences in equipment used by different types of golfer in the UK, in that variable zone between mid-irons and driver. Among other preferences, it shows that female golfers are four times more likely to carry a seven-wood than male golfers.
For further information, contact Richard Payne:
T: 01932 345 539