The word is out—millennials are now the largest population in the United States. Private clubs should take careful note of this audience, who range in age from 23 to 38 and whose population has surpassed more than 72 million. Estimates put the buying power of millennials in the $1.4 trillion range. How can country clubs and other private clubs harness this buying power and attract this new generation to their organization?
Six Ways to Attract Millennials to Your Private Club
The reality for your marketing team is simple: You must attract millennials to your club. If you don’t, the aging of the baby boomer generation will likely close your doors within the next decade. Here are six ways to harness some of that millennial buying power out there in the market today.
1. Build your digital brand by increasing your digital presence.
Many private clubs have been members-only for so long. Because of this there may have been a generational handoff and word of mouth interaction, but very little digital impact. Traditional membership organizations may simply not know where to start on their digital strategy—but they need to start somewhere. Updating your website is a bare minimum. Having a user-friendly mobile app, leveraging social media, and email marketing will stretch your brand across channels to reach the millennial audience.
2. Use text messaging more.
Millennials don’t make phone calls; they text. Golf courses and country clubs should use these tools to reach a targeted millennial audience. You can use texting to confirm or take reservations or send out members-only offers or invitations to special events. No matter how you use it, text messaging is the way to communicate with a millennial audience.
3. Use email automation to attract millennials.
There are plenty of platforms out there that allow you to schedule advanced email notifications via an automation app. Use these tools to reach a targeted millennial audience with the benefits of a private club membership.
4. Increase engagement on social media.
Use social to share your story. Most importantly, do this in a way that is creative and engaging and not the same old event invitation that you’ve been posting for years. Instead, post some behind-the-scenes photos of happy hour in the bar or a long course shot on a sunny summer day. Share information on programs for kids or junior/teens and post videos of your latest event. Get creative and use the medium to your advantage.
5. Set up a virtual tour.
Many millennials will not want to do a physical tour until they’re ready to buy; therefore, set up a virtual tour that will pique their interest. Make sure the video tour is mobile-friendly and link it to a scheduling app or even a chatbot to answer common questions. It could be as simple as a walk-around video from your cell phone with a running commentary about the facility. Then, get the video out there to YouTube, on your website, and on social media.
6. Ramp up your events.
This can be targeted toward current members. Start a membership drive aimed at their millennial family members. Similarly, try to host events that would appeal to millennials, such as a Valentine’s Day Golf Tournament or a singles happy hour.
While these are just a few suggestions, they will help you attract more millennials to your organization. Gecko Hospitality can help by providing you with talented, hardworking staff members to provide best-in-class service to all the new members you’ll attract. Call on us.