Golf club employees as influencers: a blessing?

By: February 18, 2020

Influencer marketing is likely to become a $5-10 billion industry by 2020. One of the trends in influencer marketing in 2020 is authenticity.

Today, influencer marketing is not about collecting likes, but rather about creating deeper relationships and connections with the followers.

To have a deeper relationship influencers must give a real glimpse into their lives and create value-driven content.

I am expecting that 2020 will be the year of Influencer Mix.

As a golf club manager or marketing manager of the golf club/resort don’t believe that one type of influencer will help you to generate a favorable image and sufficient awareness for your golf club and resort.

Different strategies, content channels, and influencer profiles can be employed and combined for a single brand.

hearts and likes golf club employees

I am expecting to see more combination of the power of macro, micro and nano influencers for one unique project or different ones:

  • macro-influencers provide reach and are the right choice for awareness campaigns;
  • micro & nano-influencers are great for true cost-effective solutions for engagement and conversions.

Yuval Ben-Itzhak (CEO, Socialbakers) says

Micro-influencers became more important and now comprise the majority of influencers (over 75% of all influencers in North America are micro-influencers).

A Later report found

Micro-influencers have the highest engagement rates (averaging at 7%) on their feed posts!

We should not neglect the notion to create partnerships with the selected influencers to be able to achieve continuous engagement with the right potential customers.

Another reason why your golf club should create partnerships with the best influencer is one-off influencer posts or stories aren’t enough to bring results to most golf clubs/brands.

Just like in other areas of advertising, customers need to meet with your message several times (cca. 4-8 times) to achieve the desired action.

influencer-marketing-golf club employees

Golf club employees as influencers

Who could better explain the experience available in your golf club than your golf club employees?

Their social media networks are usually stronger than any relationship the people in their networks may have with your golf club or brand.

Employees today have got on average 1000-1200 social connections.

This is why I recommend turning your golf club employees into brand ambassadors.

An Altimeter Group study found these are the TOP3 benefits of employee advocacy programs:

  1. Increasing reach of brand messages in social media;
  2. Drive increased understanding and brand health of our organization;
  3. Engage employees more deeply in our company mission & their work.

When we are talking about employee experience development, we highlight that value is created by satisfied, loyal, and productive employees.

Satisfied and loyal golf club employees are indispensable for successful employee advocacy programs!

However, it is worth noting that not every golf club employee has got the right skills for this task. This means it will require you to provide them training about social media skills and a basic understanding of marketing.

You can ask those colleagues who have got sufficient experience in this field to help those who aren’t familiar enough with the social media world.

smile-face-customer - golf club employees
6 tips to succeed with your employee advocacy program
  1. Define the goals & objectives of the program!
  2. Provide guidelines & hold their hands! – tell them what to do and what don’t in social media + how can they achieve higher engagement. Make sure your golf club employees know what they can and can’t share publicly.
  3. Create great content! Many of you already have created a visual content library. Provide access to it for your employees, so they can use it freely in line with your guidelines. If you think your golf club employee’s content is outstanding then distribute it with the employee’s permission.
  4. Make easy to share! – Provide a link from where they can download the club’s latest visual content, press releases, etc. Include sample posts, tweets, and hashtags they can use.
  5. Give chance to contribute: to the golf club’s website, social media channels, etc. If you put your golf club employees into the spotlight they more likely to share the content within their social media network.
  6. Thank them continuously! – Creating content and being active in social media is really time-consuming. Therefore, thank your employees who are willing to invest their time and energy to promote your golf club voluntarily. E.g. by giving a hand-written thank you card, a friendly social shout out, etc.

It is very important to do the employee brand ambassador/influencer program properly because the competition in the digital environment is increasing.

Hilton Suggests – employee advocacy program example

The Hilton Suggests initiative was launched in 2009. This international Hilton initiative is a collection of Hilton employees who volunteer their best local advice, to help and delight travelers on Twitter.

Hilton is using Lithium Social Web for social listening to find those travelers who need help. Hilton Suggests is voluntary for Hilton employees.

It is very good that Hilton wants to add a personal touch via their employees. I like also that they would like to share this way that cannot be googled.