During the European Tour Properties’ Annual Conference, Anja Schneider, Head of Strategy & Customer Innovation, SAP highlighted how digital transformation and innovative technology is reshaping the golf industry and the potential it can offer venues both now and in the future.
There are many ways in which technology is reshaping the golf industry, here SAP’s Anja Schneider highlights five:
People Behaviour – Mobility
The golf customer today uses their phone more than using a laptop to both communicate with their friends, family or colleagues, but also conduct searches that eventually are converted into sales. Mobile apps are common in our daily lives, and help us to stay in touch with our preferred services and brands. We need to make sure to react fast on people behaviour and to learn from that on the golf experience. Creating a more trusted and closer relationship between brands and customers is key.
Digital Reach – Online bookings
The online world is evolving rapidly, sometimes faster than brands assume. While we can’t afford to open businesses from sunrise to sunset, brands need to be discoverable 24/7 in the digital world. Giving customers what they want, all day, everyday is the power of the hyper connected world. Google statistics show that 70% of users who search for a brand will end up buying a product or service at the store within one year.
Connect physical with digital – Wearable technology
One of the most innovative technologies that is shaping the way we analyse and track offline activities in the digital world is sensors and wearables. Did you know there’s a headband that can monitor your stress levels as you play golf? Did you ever think sensors embedded in your golf glove could record swing path and tempo? Would you be interested in having a sensor to be included in your club to measure core golf data when it arises? All this information is giving a new dimension to the golfer that we can now leverage in a useful way to improve scores and overall enjoyment.
The user is even more digitally savvy today and golf-learning environments can now take place online. Instruction is no longer just a present activity that requires people to go to the lesson tee, but instead is available any where in the world, at anytime. Multiple videos of how to improve your golf game can be seen on YouTube, Vimeo or via bespoke apps, like that developed by Golf Club St Leon-Rot for their pupils, which hone in on the aspects of your game that can be improved – either in your living room or at the golf club in your own time.
Social networks and social platforms are one of the most revolutionising technologies that we have seen during the last decade. People are having a dialogue with others online and brands can join the conversation as well by humanising their presence and tone with actual customers and potential new ones. Social media is giving a voice to golf courses and letting them get involved in the new digital space, helping them grow the appeal of the game and its social (in the traditional sense of the word) aspects.
So what steps will you take in the digital world to help position your club for the future?