2019 Millennial Golf Industry Survey Findings – Part 8

In ongoing research collaboration with Millennial golfer organization Nextgengolf, GGA recently updated its study of the habits, attitudes, and preferences of Millennial golfers.  The 2019 study brings forward survey findings from over 1,400 Millennial golfers and builds upon research conducted in 2017 and 2018.

This is the eighth and final installment of a multi-part series of infographics to feature the latest Millennial golfer feedback. Part 8, below, examines public course golf and the key habits, attributes, and fee tolerances of Millennials who play most of their golf at public facilities. Also included are observations about how this group decides which courses to play, how much they expect to play in the future, and key differences between this group of Millennials and those who play most of their golf at private facilities.

See previous individual installments here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, or view all eight parts here.

Research Overview

In many clubs today, the long-held expectations and perceptions of existing, ageing members are at odds with the entirely different needs and expectations of a new wave of younger, more casual members.  The challenge for clubs?  To create an environment which not only appeals to the new wave, but where members of all types can coexist.

Research findings highlight how golf clubs can adapt and develop their offerings to meet the needs of the next generation of members and customers.  The goal is to provide valuable insights about Millennial golfers, the challenges they face, and the opportunities for clubs to help support the long-term sustainability of the game and the industry as a whole.

Background

As the leading entity for team-based golf in the United States, Nextgengolf connects Millennials to golf and supports the success of their game while GGA specializes in solution engineering and problem solving for golf-related businesses.  A fusion of GGA’s 27-year history of private club research and Nextgengolf’s connection to young golfers afforded the unique opportunity to study a highly valuable Millennial audience.

The survey sample focused exclusively on a sample audience of active, avid Millennial golfers with prior golf interest and experience in tournaments or golf events.  To date, more than 3,600 survey responses have been analyzed during the three-year research study.

Thank you to the Club Management Association of America (CMAA) for the support that makes this research possible.

2019 Millennial Golf Industry Survey Findings – Part 7

In ongoing research collaboration with Millennial golfer organization Nextgengolf, GGA recently updated its study of the habits, attitudes, and preferences of Millennial golfers.  The 2019 study brings forward survey findings from over 1,400 Millennial golfers and builds upon research conducted in 2017 and 2018.

This is the seventh installment of a multi-part series of infographics to feature the latest Millennial golfer feedback. Part 7, below, explores the importance of non-golf amenities and social components Millennials look for in club offerings. Also included are observations about how their outlook is evolving over time and several takeaways on how the golf industry is responding to Millennial interests.

See previous installments here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6 and look for the final installment of this series to be released shortly.

Research Overview

In many clubs today, the long-held expectations and perceptions of existing, ageing members are at odds with the entirely different needs and expectations of a new wave of younger, more casual members.  The challenge for clubs?  To create an environment which not only appeals to the new wave, but where members of all types can coexist.

Research findings highlight how golf clubs can adapt and develop their offerings to meet the needs of the next generation of members and customers.  The goal is to provide valuable insights about Millennial golfers, the challenges they face, and the opportunities for clubs to help support the long-term sustainability of the game and the industry as a whole.

Background

As the leading entity for team-based golf in the United States, Nextgengolf connects Millennials to golf and supports the success of their game while GGA specializes in solution engineering and problem solving for golf-related businesses.  A fusion of GGA’s 27-year history of private club research and Nextgengolf’s connection to young golfers afforded the unique opportunity to study a highly valuable Millennial audience.

The survey sample focused exclusively on a sample audience of active, avid Millennial golfers with prior golf interest and experience in tournaments or golf events.  To date, more than 3,600 survey responses have been analyzed during the three-year research study.

Thank you to the Club Management Association of America (CMAA) for the support that makes this research possible.

2019 Millennial Golf Industry Survey Findings – Part 6

In ongoing research collaboration with Millennial golfer organization Nextgengolf, GGA recently updated its study of the habits, attitudes, and preferences of Millennial golfers.  The 2019 study brings forward survey findings from over 1,400 Millennial golfers and builds upon research conducted in 2017 and 2018.

This is the sixth installment of a multi-part series of infographics to feature the latest Millennial golfer feedback. Part 6, below, examines the tolerance levels of Millennial golfers to pay annual club dues and considers these within the context of what inhibits or triggers them to join private clubs. Also included are some suggestions from Millennials on how clubs can increase the relevance of their dues structures to the Millennial audience.

See previous installments here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5 and look for new installments to be released in the coming weeks.

Research Overview

In many clubs today, the long-held expectations and perceptions of existing, ageing members are at odds with the entirely different needs and expectations of a new wave of younger, more casual members.  The challenge for clubs?  To create an environment which not only appeals to the new wave, but where members of all types can coexist.

Research findings highlight how golf clubs can adapt and develop their offerings to meet the needs of the next generation of members and customers.  The goal is to provide valuable insights about Millennial golfers, the challenges they face, and the opportunities for clubs to help support the long-term sustainability of the game and the industry as a whole.

Background

As the leading entity for team-based golf in the United States, Nextgengolf connects Millennials to golf and supports the success of their game while GGA specializes in solution engineering and problem solving for golf-related businesses.  A fusion of GGA’s 27-year history of private club research and Nextgengolf’s connection to young golfers afforded the unique opportunity to study a highly valuable Millennial audience.

The survey sample focused exclusively on a sample audience of active, avid Millennial golfers with prior golf interest and experience in tournaments or golf events.  To date, more than 3,600 survey responses have been analyzed during the three-year research study.

Thank you to the Club Management Association of America (CMAA) for the support that makes this research possible.

2019 Millennial Golf Industry Survey Findings – Part 5

In ongoing research collaboration with Millennial golfer organization Nextgengolf, GGA recently updated its study of the habits, attitudes, and preferences of Millennial golfers.  The 2019 study brings forward survey findings from over 1,400 Millennial golfers and builds upon research conducted in 2017 and 2018.

This is the fifth installment of a multi-part series of infographics to feature the latest Millennial golfer feedback. Part 5, below, illustrates the relationship between household income and Millennial golf utilization by considering the factors which prevent them from playing more golf and assessing whether preferences for facilities, amenities, and booking methods are impacted by characteristics such as income or children.

See previous installments here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4 and look for new installments to be released in the coming weeks.

Research Overview

In many clubs today, the long-held expectations and perceptions of existing, ageing members are at odds with the entirely different needs and expectations of a new wave of younger, more casual members.  The challenge for clubs?  To create an environment which not only appeals to the new wave, but where members of all types can coexist.

Research findings highlight how golf clubs can adapt and develop their offerings to meet the needs of the next generation of members and customers.  The goal is to provide valuable insights about Millennial golfers, the challenges they face, and the opportunities for clubs to help support the long-term sustainability of the game and the industry as a whole.

Background

As the leading entity for team-based golf in the United States, Nextgengolf connects Millennials to golf and supports the success of their game while GGA specializes in solution engineering and problem solving for golf-related businesses.  A fusion of GGA’s 27-year history of private club research and Nextgengolf’s connection to young golfers afforded the unique opportunity to study a highly valuable Millennial audience.

The survey sample focused exclusively on a sample audience of active, avid Millennial golfers with prior golf interest and experience in tournaments or golf events.  To date, more than 3,600 survey responses have been analyzed during the three-year research study.

Thank you to the Club Management Association of America (CMAA) for the support that makes this research possible.

2019 Millennial Golf Industry Survey Findings – Part 4

In ongoing research collaboration with Millennial golfer organization Nextgengolf, GGA recently updated its study of the habits, attitudes, and preferences of Millennial golfers.  The 2019 study brings forward survey findings from over 1,400 Millennial golfers and builds upon research conducted in 2017 and 2018.

This is the fourth installment of a multi-part series of infographics to feature the latest Millennial golfer feedback. Part 4, below, takes a look at the facility preferences of low-handicap Millennial golfers, their willingness to pay private club fees, and suggests ways clubs can look to attract them as members.

See previous installments here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and look for new installments to be released in the coming weeks.

Research Overview

In many clubs today, the long-held expectations and perceptions of existing, ageing members are at odds with the entirely different needs and expectations of a new wave of younger, more casual members.  The challenge for clubs?  To create an environment which not only appeals to the new wave, but where members of all types can coexist.

Research findings highlight how golf clubs can adapt and develop their offerings to meet the needs of the next generation of members and customers.  The goal is to provide valuable insights about Millennial golfers, the challenges they face, and the opportunities for clubs to help support the long-term sustainability of the game and the industry as a whole.

Background

As the leading entity for team-based golf in the United States, Nextgengolf connects Millennials to golf and supports the success of their game while GGA specializes in solution engineering and problem solving for golf-related businesses.  A fusion of GGA’s 27-year history of private club research and Nextgengolf’s connection to young golfers afforded the unique opportunity to study a highly valuable Millennial audience.

The survey sample focused exclusively on a sample audience of active, avid Millennial golfers with prior golf interest and experience in tournaments or golf events.  To date, more than 3,600 survey responses have been analyzed during the three-year research study.

Thank you to the Club Management Association of America (CMAA) for the support that makes this research possible.

2019 Millennial Golf Industry Survey Findings – Part 3

In ongoing research collaboration with Millennial golfer organization Nextgengolf, GGA recently updated its study of the habits, attitudes, and preferences of Millennial golfers.  The 2019 study brings forward survey findings from over 1,400 Millennial golfers and builds upon research conducted in 2017 and 2018.

This is the second installment of a multi-part series of infographics to feature the latest Millennial golfer feedback.  Part 1 focused on the demographics of respondents and their exposure to the game.  Part 2 summarized the reasons why Millennials play golf and explored what will trigger them to join a private club. Part 3, below, considers barriers deterring Millennials from joining private clubs and looks at their tolerance to pay annual dues and joining fees.

Keep an eye out for new installments to be released in the coming weeks.

Research Overview

In many clubs today, the long-held expectations and perceptions of existing, ageing members are at odds with the entirely different needs and expectations of a new wave of younger, more casual members.  The challenge for clubs?  To create an environment which not only appeals to the new wave, but where members of all types can coexist.

Research findings highlight how golf clubs can adapt and develop their offerings to meet the needs of the next generation of members and customers.  The goal is to provide valuable insights about Millennial golfers, the challenges they face, and the opportunities for clubs to help support the long-term sustainability of the game and the industry as a whole.

Background

As the leading entity for team-based golf in the United States, Nextgengolf connects Millennials to golf and supports the success of their game while GGA specializes in solution engineering and problem solving for golf-related businesses.  A fusion of GGA’s 27-year history of private club research and Nextgengolf’s connection to young golfers afforded the unique opportunity to study a highly valuable Millennial audience.

The survey sample focused exclusively on a sample audience of active, avid Millennial golfers with prior golf interest and experience in tournaments or golf events.  To date, more than 3,600 survey responses have been analyzed during the three-year research study.

Thank you to the Club Management Association of America (CMAA) for the support that makes this research possible.

2019 Millennial Golf Industry Survey Findings – Part 2

In ongoing research collaboration with Millennial golfer organization Nextgengolf, GGA recently updated its study of the habits, attitudes, and preferences of Millennial golfers.  The 2019 study brings forward survey findings from over 1,400 Millennial golfers and builds upon research conducted in 2017 and 2018.

This is the second installment of a multi-part series of infographics to feature the latest Millennial golfer feedback.  Part 1 focused on the demographics of respondents and their exposure to the game while Part 2, below, summarizes the reasons why Millennials play golf and explores what will trigger them to join a private club.

Keep an eye out for new installments to be released in the coming weeks.

Research Overview

In many clubs today, the long-held expectations and perceptions of existing, ageing members are at odds with the entirely different needs and expectations of a new wave of younger, more casual members.  The challenge for clubs?  To create an environment which not only appeals to the new wave, but where members of all types can coexist.

Research findings highlight how golf clubs can adapt and develop their offerings to meet the needs of the next generation of members and customers.  The goal is to provide valuable insights about Millennial golfers, the challenges they face, and the opportunities for clubs to help support the long-term sustainability of the game and the industry as a whole.

Background

As the leading entity for team-based golf in the United States, Nextgengolf connects Millennials to golf and supports the success of their game while GGA specializes in solution engineering and problem solving for golf-related businesses.  A fusion of GGA’s 27-year history of private club research and Nextgengolf’s connection to young golfers afforded the unique opportunity to study a highly valuable Millennial audience.

The survey sample focused exclusively on a sample audience of active, avid Millennial golfers with prior golf interest and experience in tournaments or golf events.  To date, more than 3,600 survey responses have been analyzed during the three-year research study.

Thank you to the Club Management Association of America (CMAA) for the support that makes this research possible.

First Impressions Matter

First impressions matter. But how do we create positive experiences for all when different customers have different values?

Backed by recent research findings, GGA’s Ben Hopkinson looks at why clubs need to think carefully about their product perception in relation to a key target segment, and provides some guidance.

First impressions of a Club can come in a variety of different forms, be it an initial tour, as a member’s guest, at a social event, or otherwise. Increasingly, it need not require an actual visit for someone to form a first impression. Even something like a video advertisement of the Club can form a lasting opinion in the eyes of a potential customer.

One thing, however, is for sure: you never get a second chance at a first impression. So how do you create a memorable first impression of your club’s product and services?

It’s not an easy question to answer, but successful club marketers go above and beyond to understand the key attributes that their target customers value most, because preferences around joining can change drastically based on age, gender or economic status. While it’s important for clubs to isolate their key strengths and core competencies, this shouldn’t lead to inflexible, one-size-fits-all marketing that force-feeds the same joining factors to all of the different target groups.

Understand the Joining Preferences of each Key Audience

Let’s take Millennials as an example – the age segment that continues to keep club marketers up at night. Here’s what we know for sure about the characteristics and values of my confusing and intriguing generation:

  • We’re getting married and starting families later in life
  • We move and switch jobs more often
  • We lead busier lifestyles than previous generations and devote less time to leisure pursuits

Because of this, our ideal private club experience needs to maximize the family time we do have, be flexible, and offer much more than just golf. But, perhaps most importantly, we want to be around other Millennials!

So, how does this translate into the experience and amenities we are looking for? Recent GGA client surveys have continued to show my generation placing a higher value on the non-golf amenities and social experience. In a recent study of Millennial golfers*, when asked “what non-golf amenities or social components would be important to you in joining a private club”, the top three selections were ‘Fitness Center’ (76%), ‘Pool’ (71%) and ‘Socialization and Events’ (68%).

Customize the First Impression

Offering the programs and amenities to attract Millennials is step one, but turning those offerings into a memorable experience is the clincher. First impressions for Millennials must help us visualize a comprehensive club experience that becomes the social hub for the entire family – fusing friends, family, fun and fitness. Create first impressions of your club that bring Millennials and our young families together, and the membership value will resonate with us.

Easier said than done, right? How do clubs bring Millennials together when many barely have any current under-40 members to help in the recruitment effort? The answer lies in rolling out a tailored plan of attack for targeting different customers.

Evidence suggests (for some groups at least), that clubs are getting this right. The majority of clubs we work with are well-versed in a member tour for the classic ’empty-nesting baby boomer couple’, where typically the male wants to see golf, golf and golf, while the female prefers to find out more about the dining and social calendar, make sure the staff are friendly, and learn about fitness and tennis programs. Clubs can typically meet all of these expectations while introducing them to current members with similar interests for added appeal.

So how do you create a similar memorable experience for Millennials? First off, you need to build up the programs that Millennials value. If you don’t have a strong under-40 program at your Club then I’m willing to bet you have a strong group of children and grandchildren of existing members waiting to use the Club. They may not have full access to the Club, but it’s critical to Millennial recruitment that you continue to engage them in Club events and socials. Leverage these days to create ‘group’ first impressions. Rather than invite a Millennial couple to experience the Club on a quiet lazy Sunday where all we see is baby boomers, try a different approach:

  • Invite all of your Millennial prospects out to a ‘Swim and BBQ’ day or a holiday social, along with current children and grandchildren of members
  • Host a Junior Golf Tournament or Golf Camp and give the parents a free Chef Tasting Luncheon while the kids are out on the course
  • Follow up a Mitzvah or wedding by offering guests the opportunity to come back to the Club for a ‘free yoga class’, ‘trivia night’ or a ‘tennis/golf group lesson’

These types of initiatives will help your Club standout from the pack, positioning it favorably in the minds of Millennials and increasing your chances of converting new members. Even in the worst case, you have created a memorable group experience; one which generates positive feeling and word-of-mouth in a key customer segment, plus the opportunity to capture images and videos to leverage for the next recruitment effort.

“Memorable is creative, unique, unforgettable, and anything but boring”

It’s true that current members will always be a Club Marketer’s best tool for recruitment, but there are other creative ways to provide a memorable experience and a positive first impression to a prospective member. A ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach simply won’t work anymore. Not only are you competing against other private clubs in the area, you’re also competing against every leisure alternative available to the prospective member.

A first impression must sell the prospect that the day-to-day member experience is memorable, and the best use of their valuable and limited leisure time. Memorable is creative, unique, unforgettable, and anything but boring. So next time a prospective member inquires about the Club, ask yourself… “What does memorable mean to them”?

*As part of an ongoing research collaboration with Millennial golfer organization Nextgengolf, the 2019 study brings forward survey findings from over 1,400 Millennial golfers and builds upon research conducted in 2017 and 2018 of the habits, attitudes, and preferences of Millennial golfers.

This article was authored by GGA Senior Associate Ben Hopkinson

2019 Millennial Golf Industry Survey Findings – Part 1

In ongoing research collaboration with Millennial golfer organization Nextgengolf, GGA recently updated its study of the habits, attitudes, and preferences of Millennial golfers.  The 2019 study brings forward survey findings from over 1,400 Millennial golfers and builds upon research conducted in 2017 and 2018.

Illustrated below is the first installment of a multi-part series of infographics to feature the latest Millennial golfer feedback.  To establish a baseline for discussion, Part 1 focuses on the demographics of respondents and their exposure to the game.

Over the next few weeks, keep an eye out for new installments featuring the Millennial outlook on public courses, golf skill, club fees/costs/dues, private clubs, membership recruitment, barriers to golf, and much more.

Research Overview

In many clubs today, the long-held expectations and perceptions of existing, ageing members are at odds with the entirely different needs and expectations of a new wave of younger, more casual members.  The challenge for clubs?  To create an environment which not only appeals to the new wave, but where members of all types can coexist.

Research findings highlight how golf clubs can adapt and develop their offerings to meet the needs of the next generation of members and customers.  The goal is to provide valuable insights about Millennial golfers, the challenges they face, and the opportunities for clubs to help support the long-term sustainability of the game and the industry as a whole.

Background

As the leading entity for team-based golf in the United States, Nextgengolf connects Millennials to golf and supports the success of their game while GGA specializes in solution engineering and problem solving for golf-related businesses.  A fusion of GGA’s 27-year history of private club research and Nextgengolf’s connection to young golfers afforded the unique opportunity to study a highly valuable Millennial audience.

The survey sample focused exclusively on a sample audience of active, avid Millennial golfers with prior golf interest and experience in tournaments or golf events.  To date, more than 3,600 survey responses have been analyzed during the three-year research study.

Thank you to the Club Management Association of America (CMAA) for the support that makes this research possible.

What’s Important to Know About Recruiting Millennials to Join the Club?

Occam’s Razor is the work of a Franciscan friar and theologian, William of Ockham, who reasoned that itis better to keep things simple when attempting to understand complicated ideas.  This is good advice for club directors and managers when trying to plan ahead.

The confusion begins in answering, “What do they want?” As club leaders’ eyes have turned from generation X to the millennial generation, a good source for answers can be found from Kris Hart, the co-founder and CEO of Nextgen Golf, whose motto is “Live Life.  Play Golf.”

Hart emphasizes two basic needs that clubs meet for millennials: flexibility and community.

“Millennials are often on the move and need flexibility for when they can play.  More importantly, having flexible membership costs and initiation fees are an important factor for millennials when joining a club,” says Hart.  “Some may not stay in one city for a long time, paying up-front costs are less attractive.”

According to Hart, millennials need to be part of something.  “Clubs that have younger members and a good community around the club are attractive.  Millennials rely heavily on recommendations from family and friends and want to hang out with people like them.”

Now the largest market segment in America, the millennial generation has high expectations, in general.  “Millennials expect to be treated the same as a full adult member and do not want to be restricted or looked down upon as a young adult member.” Hart advises.

And first impressions are important! According to Hart, “Technology expectations are continuing to increase.  The club’s digital presence and online reputation has become much more meaningful given millennials can go right to google and research everything about a club in a matter of seconds.”

Health and wellness are imperative for this generation.  Clubs that have gyms, fitness classes and embrace the health and wellness movement will be better prepared for this generation.

Millennials are getting married and having kids later in life than previous generations.  As Millennials continue to age, family-focused clubs are increasingly more important, Hart stresses.

Keep it simple if your club wants to attract millennial members.

This piece was authored by GGA Partner Henry DeLozier for the National Club Association’s Club Director quarterly magazine.