Jump to content

Why is golf a hard sell?


Big money
 Share

Recommended Posts

11 hours ago, RickyBobby_PR said:

Disagree with this part. I know lots of bad or so so golfers that enjoy the game despite not playing well. 

I wish that I knew any golfers like that.  Most people I know and even randoms who I get paired up with, when they are bad at golf, they dont seem to enjoy it much.  I cant imagine how it would be much fun to slice your drives into the woods, top your fairway wood, duff your chips and 3-putt every hole.

I know that for me, even when I dont score very well, I still enjoy golf when I pure an iron or when I shot works out exactly like I planned.

"I suppose its better to be a master of 7 than to be vaguely familiar with 14." - Chick Evans

Whats in my Sun Mountain 2.5+ stand bag?

Woods: Tommy Armour Atomic 10.5* 

Hybrid: Mizuno MP Fli-Hi 3H

Irons: Mizuno T-Zoid True 5, 7 and 9-irons

Wedge: Mizuno S18 54* and Top Flite chipper

Putter: Mizuno Bettinardi A-02

Ball: Maxfli Tour X

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, ZenGolfer said:

I wish that I knew any golfers like that.  Most people I know and even randoms who I get paired up with, when they are bad at golf, they dont seem to enjoy it much.  I cant imagine how it would be much fun to slice your drives into the woods, top your fairway wood, duff your chips and 3-putt every hole.

I know that for me, even when I dont score very well, I still enjoy golf when I pure an iron or when I shot works out exactly like I planned.

Guys like that in my experience get frustrated at golf and will complain all day and then come back out for more. Others won’t complain and just go about the round. When both go home they look back and enjoyed the time out playing. There are many ways to enjoy golf and ability doesn’t always impact enjoyment. I know guys who are single digits that don’t seem to be enjoying a round because of a bad shot or two. 

Driver: PXG 0811 X+ Proto w/UST Helium 5F4

Wood: TaylorMade M5 5W w/Accra TZ5 +1/2”, TaylorMade Sim 3W w/Aldila rogue white

Hybrid: PXG Gen2 22* w/AD hybrid

Irons: PXG Gen3 0311T w/Nippon modus 120

Wedges: TaylorMade MG2 50*, Tiger grind 56/60

Putter: Scotty Caemeron Super Rat1

Ball: Titleist Prov1

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think there's a few reasons it's hard to get new people in to the game.

1) Cost to entry - yes I know you can go get used or beginner set for $100 or less, however most people like the top of the line things and without knowing think that a $1000 set of irons will instantly make them better than a $100 set.  The cost of lessons isn't cheap either

2) Cost of rounds - Its hard anymore to find a good course on the weekends that's under $40. If you do it's not in the best of shape which can lead to frustration hitting out of bad fairways or greens that even the best putters would struggle on

3) Time to learn to play - The amount of time you have to dedicate to practicing the game is a long process, if you want to be decent. Also it can fade quickly (like over a long winter). I deal with this every time my wife comes to the range with me, she hits 3 semi decent shots in a row and then hits a few bad ones and hates it. 

4) Time to play - This is not a fast paced instant gratification game, 3 to 4 hours is a lot to invest in an activity

  • Like 1

Driver  :titelist-small: TS 2, Hzrdus Smoke Black Stiff 9.5* Setting, A2

Fairway Wood:   :ping-small: G30 Stiff Shaft

Hybrid:   :titelist-small: TS2 19* Hzrdus Smoke Black Stiff shaft

Irons:     :titelist-small: 718 AP1 (4-PW) AMT Red Stiff Shafts 

Wedges:  :cleveland-small: RTX4 52* 56*

Putter:   :cameron-small: Scotty Cameron Golo 5

Right Handed 

Pittsburgh, PA

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Trying to throw another angle at this here, but the perception that golf can only be played and enjoyed over 18 holes of stroke play may be a factor that keeps people from participating in the game.

There are many people that I know that play 2v2 or other small sided variations of larger games. As a former soccer player and coach, it’s not always easy to find 22 people to have a complete match. But it is much easier to find 8 people to play a 4v4 game.

Creating opportunities for “pick-up” type games could help draw people into the game.

In another thread, it was mentioned that courses could offer rounds of 3, 6, 9, 12, 15, or 18 holes to bring people into the game. Also, showing people that playing team games such as better ball, alternate shot, scramble, shamble, etc. can increase people’s enjoyment of the game.

When I play with my in-laws, we typically will play 9 holes of stroke play and then 9 holes of a scramble or shamble.


Sent from my iPhone using MyGolfSpy

  • Like 1

In my :cobra-small: Ultralight Stand Bag:

Driver:    :callaway-small: Rogue 10.5° - LH -  Project X EvenFlow 60 Stiff
Woods:   :cobra-small: King F9 - LH - 3/4 Wood - Atmos Blue TS 7 Stiff
               :cobra-small: King F9 - LH - 5/6 Wood - Atmos Blue TS 7 Stiff
Irons:      :cobra-small: King F9 - LH - 5-GW - KBS C-Taper Lite Stiff
Wedges: :cobra-small: King Black - LH - 52° 56° 60° - KBS Hi-Rev 2.0 Stiff
Putter:     :1332069271_TommyArmour: - Impact No. 3
Ball:        :taylormade-small: TP5x

Rangefinder: :skycaddie: LX5 Watch

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It may be a hard sell but that hasn't stopped people from playing and picking up the game. There is always a push for membership at clubs, but I think this is just due to the fact that there are a lot of golf courses. The NGF released their annual report not to long ago, I don't have access to the full report $$, but overall participation is up and has actually continued to rise since 2014. Here is a Forbes article discussing the state of the game. 

https://www.forbes.com/sites/erikmatuszewski/2019/05/01/the-state-of-the-golf-industry-for-2019/#7aa85ff85208

:taylormade-small:             SIM 9.5* (GD XC 6X) 

:taylormade-small:             SIM 15* (GD DI 7X) 

:taylormade-small:             3 DHY (GD DI HY8X)

:srixon-small:                    ZX7 4-PW (KBS C Taper S)

:titelist-small:                     Vokey SM8 49 08 F ( KBS 610)

:titelist-small:                     Vokey SM8 55 08 M (KBS 610)

:titelist-small:                     Vokey SM8 59 04 L  (KBS 610)

:scotty-cameron-1:                Special Select SquareBack 2 33"

:titelist-small:                     ProV1

Twitter                     @THEZIPR23

 

"One thing Golf has taught me, is that my muscles have no memory."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you look at any Topgolf location you see the shear joy an entire family can have at the game of golf. TVs, loud music, beer, wine and great food all while everyone is Laughing and someone being horrible at golf.
What does a Country Club have anything similar in what I just explained. They are stuffy, elitist, expensive and full of rules. A family would join TopGolf in a heart beat,, but joining a country club??? Where is the payoff for a family. In today's instant gratification generation the journey to being a competent golfer that can get on a good course and not look like a complete ass is a long one.
If you are a long time golfer like myself but with limited time to play due to work cycles its foolish for me to belong to a club. I like to play a variety of courses. Our local Muni allows walkers $20 for 18 holes. No club house minimum, no restaurant minimum, no fancy dress code. Just golf. Why would I want to join a club??

Sent from my SM-G965U using Tapatalk

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Popeye64 said:

If you look at any Topgolf location you see the shear joy an entire family can have at the game of golf. TVs, loud music, beer, wine and great food all while everyone is Laughing and someone being horrible at golf.
What does a Country Club have anything similar in what I just explained. They are stuffy, elitist, expensive and full of rules. A family would join TopGolf in a heart beat,, but joining a country club??? Where is the payoff for a family. In today's instant gratification generation the journey to being a competent golfer that can get on a good course and not look like a complete ass is a long one.
If you are a long time golfer like myself but with limited time to play due to work cycles its foolish for me to belong to a club. I like to play a variety of courses. Our local Muni allows walkers $20 for 18 holes. No club house minimum, no restaurant minimum, no fancy dress code. Just golf. Why would I want to join a club??

Sent from my SM-G965U using Tapatalk
 

Amen!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 months later...

I was hanging out, talking to the GM and assistant at my home club last night.  Found out a private club with a pretty impressive history in a nearby community is being sold for pennies on the dollar to the town where the club is located.  Similar story to what we've heard over the past 10 years.  They incurred huge debt in the late 90's to early 00's with several expansions that were completely unnecessary and turned a lot of the membership base off.

They tripled the size of the clubhouse which was very unpopular.  The quaint quarters of the old clubhouse made everyone feel welcome and right at home.  The new expansive clubhouse just feels dead and empty.  They built a huge pool and facilities to support the pool in a community that already had a town owned parks and recreation aquatics center.  They built a new bar/restaurant that is almost always empty.  They didn't do anything to the golf course and conditions have deteriorated badly.  It's a viscous cycle where the newly constructed "amenities" drag down revenue, which leads to less money for the golf course, which leads to poor playing conditions, which leads to the town purchasing the property for the land.

I can never understand the desire for opulence.  Why can't golf facilities do golf and do it as well as they possibly can?  Forget the other garbage.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

15 minutes ago, sixcat said:

I can never understand the desire for opulence.  Why can't golf facilities do golf and do it as well as they possibly can?  Forget the other garbage.

Couldn't agree more. Too much money is spent on buildings that few golfers will spend much time in and the other amenities often attached to a golf facility can easily be found elsewhere.

  • Like 2

Driver: Mizuno ST190 9.5* Aldila RIP Alpha 60 S
Fairway Wood: Mizuno ST190 15* Fujikura Atmos Blue 6S
Hyrbrid: Mizuno CLK 19* Fujikura Speeder EVO HB
Irons: Bridgestone J40 CB (4-PW) Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100
Wedges: Bridgestone Tour B XW-1 50*, 54*, & 58* Nippon Modus 3 105
Putter: Cleveland Huntington Beach SOFT Premier 4 34"
Ball: Snell MTB-X
Bag: 2017 Titleist Players 5 Stand Bag

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm sure it's different in the different parts of the country or world.  We haven't had a new golf course in my area in over 20 years.  My course, a muni, was completely rebuilt 20 years ago as the area was developed for business and houses/condos.  They kept the same land, but turned an 18-hole par 66 course and 9-hole par 3 course into our current 18-hole par 72 course.  It's not the best of courses, but it's well maintained for a muni.  The clubhouse that was built is just a building for the pro shop, cafe (such as it is), and rest rooms.  It's also deteriorating, but I doubt any updates will be made.  Price is competitive with other courses ranging from $25-50 depending on day and time. However, memberships are reasonable, and a Player's Card purchased for $300 get's you 50% of any rate/any day.  A membership also gets you Player's Card rates at our sister course.

The other "new" course was built 24 years ago out in the desert with a housing plan around it.  There were very few houses around it until two years ago.  Now there are houses on every hole.  It's still a couple of miles out into the desert, and there are no services there.  The clubhouse was a modular building for pro shop and cafe.  The course has gone downhill the last couple of years IMO, but it was purchased this year and the new owner has stated that he is improving the course and building a new clubhouse with a nice restaurant.  If it's a decent restaurant, it should be packed even by non-golfers that live there as other food options are miles away.

Our golfing population has been fairly steady over the years; new young players taking up the game as us old guys die off.  We do not have a First Tee program anymore, but every course has kid's clinics in the summer, and special kids rates apply at certain times when accompanied by an adult.  I suspect that the younger generations will either take it up if they enjoy the challenge... or they won't.  I also suspect that at some point in their life, some of those that don't will tend to migrate to golf after they settle down, played their other games, and had their families. Just like I did.  They will look for a pastime that provides challenges when they become too old for the more strenuous activities of their youth.  I see both young kids taking up the game, and I see middle-age people learning the game for the first time.  I think it's always been like that, and it will always be like that.  What becomes the "normal" varies from area to area based on a lot of factors.  Clearly, it's different in rural areas than in metro areas.

  • Like 2

We don’t stop playing the game because we get old; we get old because we stop playing the game.”

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Kenny B said:

I'm sure it's different in the different parts of the country or world.  We haven't had a new golf course in my area in over 20 years.  My course, a muni, was completely rebuilt 20 years ago as the area was developed for business and houses/condos.  They kept the same land, but turned an 18-hole par 66 course and 9-hole par 3 course into our current 18-hole par 72 course.  It's not the best of courses, but it's well maintained for a muni.  The clubhouse that was built is just a building for the pro shop, cafe (such as it is), and rest rooms.  It's also deteriorating, but I doubt any updates will be made.  Price is competitive with other courses ranging from $25-50 depending on day and time. However, memberships are reasonable, and a Player's Card purchased for $300 get's you 50% of any rate/any day.  A membership also gets you Player's Card rates at our sister course.

The other "new" course was built 24 years ago out in the desert with a housing plan around it.  There were very few houses around it until two years ago.  Now there are houses on every hole.  It's still a couple of miles out into the desert, and there are no services there.  The clubhouse was a modular building for pro shop and cafe.  The course has gone downhill the last couple of years IMO, but it was purchased this year and the new owner has stated that he is improving the course and building a new clubhouse with a nice restaurant.  If it's a decent restaurant, it should be packed even by non-golfers that live there as other food options are miles away.

Our golfing population has been fairly steady over the years; new young players taking up the game as us old guys die off.  We do not have a First Tee program anymore, but every course has kid's clinics in the summer, and special kids rates apply at certain times when accompanied by an adult.  I suspect that the younger generations will either take it up if they enjoy the challenge... or they won't.  I also suspect that at some point in their life, some of those that don't will tend to migrate to golf after they settle down, played their other games, and had their families. Just like I did.  They will look for a pastime that provides challenges when they become too old for the more strenuous activities of their youth.  I see both young kids taking up the game, and I see middle-age people learning the game for the first time.  I think it's always been like that, and it will always be like that.  What becomes the "normal" varies from area to area based on a lot of factors.  Clearly, it's different in rural areas than in metro areas.

My home club has 355 active members currently.  We do allow some guest play but they are limited to when and how often.  Since this area is roughly 65% retirees from the Northeast, that policy is most often enforced during the summer months given many of those retiree/residents spend the winter in Florida.  Basically, we have a lot of dues paying members that spend half the year in Florida. 

The course is always in great shape.  It isn't a course that will win any awards.  It's short at 6,164 from the tips but plays quite a bit longer given the elevation change.  To give you an example, I played 18 holes Tuesday afternoon and hit 10 drivers to only 1 wedge approach.  I had several wedges around the greens for a third but only one full wedge following a drive.  The elevation change comes into play virtually everywhere.  It is great to see all the kids around my club nowadays.  At least 13 have been mainstays this summer being dropped off at 7 am by a parent and picked up near dark.

We have had one course built locally since the 1960's.....Primland.  The rest are established courses with varying degrees of a following.  Primland gets a lot of out-of-town play but the locals know, better golf can be found at a substantially lower rate.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 5/2/2019 at 8:11 PM, silver & black said:

It's not a cheap thing to take up, regardless of the mantra "it can be as cheap as you want it to be". No, it can't. It can only be so cheap/inexpensive to a point. After that, it costs what it costs. The initial cost, IMO isn't what the problem is. It's the cost of actually playing. Yes, only a few rounds a year is not that expensive, but if you really want to play at least once a week, it gets pricey. Most of us lose quite a few balls over a year (they don't give those away.... not even Top Flights). Most courses in my area are not any cheaper than $30.00 for a round.... most are 2-10 $$$ more than that. Most folks making the median income in this country find that hard to do when there are other things that demand the $$$.

I know this isn't a popular opinion, but as one who has to figure out how to play as often as I like, it aint easy when there so many other things that require money. I'm sure I'm not the only one that feels this way.

I also understand that it takes money to run a golf course, keep staff paid and the doors open. This is why I feel golf will eventually become the realm of the wealthy/affluent... again.

Completely agree, I think you're spot on.

  • Like 1

Right Handed

Driver (9°): :cobra-small: Speedzone (HZRDUS Smoke Green 70g X-Stiff shaft)

2 Hybrid (18°): :tour-edge: Exotics EXS Pro (Evenflow Black 6.5) (2020 MGS Official Review here)

3/Driving Iron (18°): :Hogan: UiHi Iron (KBS Tour V 110g shaft)

Irons (4-PW)  post-76102-0-38507100-1525284411_thumb.jpg TS-1's (KBS $-Taper 120g Stiff shafts)

**Currently testing: 4-GW :titelist-small: T100 irons (Nippon Modus 120 X-Stiff shafts)

Wedges (54° & 58°) post-76102-0-38507100-1525284411_thumb.jpg TSW Forged (Dynamic Gold S300)

Putter: :EVNROLL: ER2B (2019 MGS Official Review here)

Ball: :Snell: MTB-Black OR MAXFLI Tour OR TP5X

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That time of year again at my club. The big push for getting new members signed up.This time around they are offering us referral discounts and prizes.Just about every potential referral  I had has something negative to say about golf.The million excuses why they won’t join or take up golf.Why is this game such a hard sell for introducing new people to the game?

Because golf is an outdoor, sometimes fairly expensive, long term commitment and we’re in a culture that wants instant gratification for minimal effort.



In the bag
Driver: Callaway Rogue Subzero 9.5 Stiff flex
3 wood: Callaway Rogue Subzero 15 degree
Hybrids: 17 degree titleist 816 h2
Irons: Ben Hogan Ptx 22-46 degree (4-pw)stiff flex standard lie
Wedges: Callaway Mac Daddy 4 50,54,58 degrees
Putter: Odyssey EXO seven

Gig’em Aggies!

Right Handed

4.5 handicap

Driver: Nike Vapor Flex with Mitsubishi Rayon Fubuki ZT60x5ct S-flex shaft and stock grip.

3-Metal: Nike VRS 15 degree with Mitsubishi Rayon tour issue Diamana S73x5ct X-flex shaft and GolfPride MCC midsize Black/White grip.

Irons: Ben Hogan PTx 22, 26, 30, 34, 38, 42, 46 degrees standard length and lie with KBS Tour-V stiff shafts and GolfPride MCC midsize Black/White grips.

Wedges: Ben Hogan TK15 54, 58 degrees with KBS Tour-V X-flex shafts and GolfPride MCC midsize Black/White grips.

Putter: Nike Method Converge B1|01 with Superstroke Flatso 2.0 grip.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Honestly, I think cost is the biggest thing keeping more people away. Sure it's an instant gratification culture and what not, but I think if you look at former athletes they don't exactly fit that category. By and large people who've spent a lot of time practicing and training in another sport would be likely to enjoy golf that way as well. That's why I enjoy it so much. 

But, paying $4k for a golf membership, that only pays back if you're playing ~2-3 rounds a week, that's just not gonna happen. Certainly the biggest hurdle imo.

  • Like 2

Right Handed

Driver (9°): :cobra-small: Speedzone (HZRDUS Smoke Green 70g X-Stiff shaft)

2 Hybrid (18°): :tour-edge: Exotics EXS Pro (Evenflow Black 6.5) (2020 MGS Official Review here)

3/Driving Iron (18°): :Hogan: UiHi Iron (KBS Tour V 110g shaft)

Irons (4-PW)  post-76102-0-38507100-1525284411_thumb.jpg TS-1's (KBS $-Taper 120g Stiff shafts)

**Currently testing: 4-GW :titelist-small: T100 irons (Nippon Modus 120 X-Stiff shafts)

Wedges (54° & 58°) post-76102-0-38507100-1525284411_thumb.jpg TSW Forged (Dynamic Gold S300)

Putter: :EVNROLL: ER2B (2019 MGS Official Review here)

Ball: :Snell: MTB-Black OR MAXFLI Tour OR TP5X

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 7/13/2019 at 5:27 AM, ncwoz said:

Honestly, I think cost is the biggest thing keeping more people away. Sure it's an instant gratification culture and what not, but I think if you look at former athletes they don't exactly fit that category. By and large people who've spent a lot of time practicing and training in another sport would be likely to enjoy golf that way as well. That's why I enjoy it so much. 

But, paying $4k for a golf membership, that only pays back if you're playing ~2-3 rounds a week, that's just not gonna happen. Certainly the biggest hurdle imo.

I actually had a great experience visiting a club for possible membership.The normal price is an astounding $9k a year for all the amenities.However; do to the clubs need for new members.They are offering a casual member pass for $1k for the season.This is for unlimited golf-range balls-and cart Monday - Wednesday.Sure we can’t play the weekends.But for the course conditions and challenges it is highly worth it.Many courses are really pushing for more members 

  • Like 2

Keep it in the short stuff

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...