Debate: Are two-for-one offers good for golf clubs?

Many golf clubs are keen to get involved with two-for-one offers while others wouldn't touch them with a barge pole. Are offers good for clubs? Or will they simply annoy existing members who then feel short-changed? James Savage and Jamie Miles debate the issue.

JS – Golf should be accessible to everyone, so making it a bit cheaper certainly helps. Two-for-one offers give clubs the opportunity to showcase themselves and potentially attract new members and visitors. I played at a club before Christmas with three friends on a two-for-one offer and we will definitely play there again after being impressed with the course and facilities.

JM – I think the offers are bad for clubs. They essentially devalue the product and give the control of rates to a third party. 

JS – It’s attitudes like that which put people off from joining clubs in the first place. Clubs can get money from people playing there who wouldn’t normally and then a potential for repeat custom. I think some clubs are too scared to open the doors to more visitors in case the feedback isn’t positive…
I think offers are a short term fix, rather than being part of a successful long-term business plan JM – Two-for-one offers may work for Alton Towers, Dominoes or Pizza Express – everyone knows there is always a deal to be had rather than paying full price. But they have been clever enough to do it so people still end up paying a decent rate. It’s going to upset members if they continually see visitors getting a better deal than they are.

JS – Clubs need to be smarter about how and when they use such offers. If done correctly they can be an excellent way of drawing people in and filling up dead time. There are offers available for almost everything these days. If golf clubs shy away from getting involved I think it shows an elitist attitude.

JM – My attitude stems from seeing golf clubs not being run like businesses and not looking at the long term effect of their actions. It varies club-to-club obviously, but yes it is a great way to get customers who might not have visited. But the fact that they haven’t is probably down to the fact that they don’t perceive it as good value until it is two for one. I think offers are a short term fix, rather than being part of a successful long-term  business plan.  

What do you think about two-for-one offers? Have your say on the issue by commenting below.

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