How to stay connected with your members from behind closed doors

By Debbie Goddard

In the past few weeks, the Coronavirus (Covid 19) pandemic has really started to impact on the world economy and many businesses, including clubs, have had to close their doors.

Whilst the world is in lockdown, there has never been a greater need for community and although the club experience can’t be replicated online, there is still a great deal we can do.

You can be as creative as you like and use the skillsets of your various staff to share stimulating and useful tutorials and videos that members can tune into remotely from their homes. Here are a few ideas we have listed to get you started…

Golf tuition
With the golf course being closed why not get your golf instructor to provide an instructional video on how your members can improve their game. Now might be the perfect time for your members to perfect their swing or improve their putting skills. Although there is no shortage of these currently, it could be personalised by specifically covering the challenges at your particular facility.

Fitness classes
There are several benefits to doing regular exercise not just physically but mentally. It is important now more than ever for people to look after their physical and mental health to help keep their immune system strong and their mind in a good place.

Your fitness staff can provide daily online classes that members can do in their homes. Yoga, HIIT workouts and personal training sessions could be done LIVE via a streaming service or pre-recorded and posted online for members to do at their own leisure.

Cooking lesson
Why not get your chef to provide an online cooking lesson. Whether its mastering knife skills or 5 recipes to make using pasta, your club culinary expert can provide tips, tricks, and recipes that all of your members can enjoy and learn at home.

You could also give members a preview to a new dish that will on the menu when the club re-opens giving members something to look forward to when they return.

Maintenance Vlogs
Whilst the club might be closed for the time being, that doesn’t stop the tireless work that goes on behind the scenes keeping the clubhouse, golf course and sports pitches maintained. Arming your greens staff, maintenance team or gardeners with a camera will allow you to show the work that is continuing in maintaining the club and course to a high standard ready for when the club re-opens for the members.

For the kids
With many countries having now closed their schools many of your family members will find themselves at home with their kids on an indefinite school holiday. Add the fact many will be attempting to work from home, keeping children entertained – and also active – can be an almighty challenge.

Many of the above ideas can be tailored towards children of all ages, giving your younger members much needed time being active or getting creative.

What site to use?
There are many different video sharing sites that you can use and mostly for free. YouTube needs no introduction as it is the most popular video sharing platform on the web. You can upload videos both publicly and privately and live stream by creating a free account. Vimeo is available both as a free as well as the paid version with a few extra features.

Some popular social media sites such as Facebook are also good for video sharing and will allow you to upload and share videos to a company page or a group, although content will only be viewable to those members who have a Facebook account. You can also live stream on Instagram.

Remember… if you are going to be streaming LIVE then always inform your audience of the time and date so they know when to be online, otherwise you could be live streaming to nobody!

If your audience requires specific equipment for your video then make sure you warn them so they can be prepared.

Below is an example of how the Champions Run, a golf and sports complex in Nebraska, USA is actively engaging with members by LIVE streaming various activities daily online.

Debbie is the Association Manager for the Club Managers Association of Europe and has been working with the association for around 11 years. Debbie is responsible for the CMAE’s administration function and ensuring the communications are sent out in a timely manner, in addition to supporting the Director of Education with the organisation of the Management Development Programmes and other events.