Perched atop Perth’s iconic Cottesloe Beach sits Sea View Golf Club. A true links, Sea View offers sweeping views across the azure blue waters of the Indian Ocean towards Rottnest.
Despite commanding a prime location in one of Perth’s most exclusive suburbs, Sea View Golf Club had seen a steady decline in membership numbers across recent years.
Declining membership isn’t an issue unique to Sea View, but the club was feeling the full impact of this negative trend.
For new golfers, walking into a private golf club can be an intimidating and nerve-wracking experience. After all, golf is a sport with strong traditions and a quirky set of rules and etiquette.
Getting new people through the doors can be one of the biggest challenges that a golf club faces.
Sea View Head Professional, Tristan McCallum knew that the club needed to take action to help arrest the decline in membership numbers.
Tristan recognised this issue and set about smashing down the barriers that turn prospective members away.
Sea View’s first membership drive in 2018 offered women a 5-week beginner course for $99. On top of this, they also offered each participant in the course a free three-month trial membership.
“This program proved to be an instant hit with 54 ladies signing up to the initial clinics and trial membership,” Tristan said.
This initiative proved popular as it helped to breakdown many barriers that had previously stopped these women from taking up golf membership.
“The ladies enjoyed the group sessions because it allowed them to instantly connect with other like-minded golfers and reduced some of the fear of joining a golf club,” Tristan noted.
“There was no fear of judgement or embarrassment if someone accidentally had a windy or duffed a chip.”
From the original group of 54 ladies that participated in the 5-week clinics, 36 took up full membership at the end of their 3-month trial membership.
Sea View have repeated the ladies’ membership drive in 2019 which saw 52 women sign up for the clinics and trial membership.
A few years ago, the club would struggle to get 10-12 women playing in their mid-week competitions. As a result of the membership drive the club now regularly sees in excess of 30 women teeing it up.
The ladies’ membership drive was so successful that Sea View has just launched a similar initiative targeted at new male members.
The new men’s lesson and membership offer includes six individual lessons for the price of five and free membership from October until the end of December.
“We are currently sitting at 44 new male members having one on one lessons with Andrew and I and they all commence their free trial membership next week on the 1st.”
Tristan’s fellow PGA Pro, Andrew Marchbank is also kicking goals with his ‘Time Poor Dads’ initiative that encourages like-minded men to come together to enjoy a hit of golf in a relaxed setting.
Time Poor Dads offers on-course coaching, a chat, a few laughs and a beer in the clubhouse afterwards whilst Andrew conducts a short Q&A session.
Not content with the success that they have had so far, Sea View is hosting a WA Golf Foundation-funded Family Open Day this Sunday, September 29 from 1-5 pm.
Long drive competitions, chipping challenges, kids’ activities and free golf lessons will be on offer across the day. The club will even be offering free memberships as prizes.
Designed to attract the entire family, Sea View’s Family Open Day is just another way that the club is breaking down barriers and opening its doors to new members.
The success of Sea View’s membership initiatives proves that if you’re willing to break the mould, willing to think outside the box and willing to take a risk then there are serious benefits to be reaped.
By opening their doors and incentivising people to give their golf course a try, Sea View is now seeing a resurgence in membership numbers.
After all, it’s hard to beat sitting in the clubhouse looking out across Sea View’s rolling fairways to the blue waters of the Indian Ocean beyond.