Golf Math: How Much Less Would It Cost To Do Business On The Links?

Yes, you read it right… LESS!

My favorite expression I hear often and love to debunk is when a business owner tells me they want to golf more but it’s too expensive. My second favorite is when they say they don’t have time. I’ve helped hundreds of business owners grow their business and it just isn’t true – unless, of course, you’re a complete idiot and after 4 hours with you no one ever wants to see you again.

As a matter of fact, I would challenge anyone to prove that they have a better conversion rate anywhere else.

In corporate America, I can leverage similar examples around building teamwork, making critical decisions, getting key decisions turned in your favor and even raises.

Being in a beautiful environment where you can’t rush, there’s lots of downtime to be human, and you have people’s undivided attention is a gift. It helps us decide if this relationship is a good fit for you or not. Rather than me spewing hundreds of statistics about how you’ll earn more – do a simple Google search.

Despite all of the research done on the topic – there are those who still don’t believe. I’d like to fix that today.

Let’s look at your last sale. Chances are you probably spent time and money trying to find a lead that was right for you. Lead and brand marketing? Networking to get to the person you want to know? Phone calls and pre-meetings before you got actual time with them. If you use Gary Vaynerchuk’s boxing metaphor, minimally, it’s a ‘JAB, JAB, JAB, Right Hook.’ (For those who don’t know this strategy, Vaynerchuk says you have to give 3 times before you can ask for the sale.) All that giving takes time. Why do you have to give? Relationships fuel sales and it takes time to build relationships.

I might argue that in 18 holes you can build 3 solid new relationships at one time. Seems like a productive use of time – nevermind being a better way to spend everyone’s afternoon.

So let’s use a real example:

Bob is a client. Bob spent $23,500 on marketing last year and acquired 14 new clients. This did not include travel, entertainment expenses or time spent. On average, this averaged about $950 per client. This brought his average client acquisition cost to $2,629 and doesn’t account for the time spent romancing prospective clients and managing his sales funnel.

Bob and I looked at his acquisition costs together and asked, “What if he had leveraged Network&Golf?” His first response was, “Well then I’d get back out in the field and sell, too!”

We did a little golf math and he strongly believed he could cut his acquisition cost in half! Bob also believed that they would not have wasted their time with a couple of clients who they ended up losing money on had they played golf with them first.

It’s hard to fake it for four hours.

Turns out, by the way, when we asked his 3 salesmen, the one with the best results always golfed with his clients and accounted for half of the company sales and had the lowest expenses.

Here’s Bob’s math:

Today’s COA (Cost Of Acquisition): $2,629/per client

After looking at his top salesman’s results and the Network & Golf program, Bob believes he can:

  • Cut his marketing costs by 60%
  • Add 10% of what he saved to his travel/entertaining budget to now have meaningful conversations with twice as many clients each year more simply
  • Have a happier team who produces even better results.

Bob also decided he would leverage Network & Golf internally to plan team building events and hold monthly business statuses with his sales team. Our favorite line?

I bet we start seeing leads come to us just because some of these guys know we’re going to bring them out on the links to talk business. Everyone needs an excuse to golf more!

Based on industry sales and marketing statistics, this quick chart will show you how golf can actually save you time as well.

It shows how much time the average sales rep spends from acquisition to close (of course there are exceptions, but this is based on national averages.) Think of all the networking meetings and handshakes. Add in phone calls, coffee meetings (and travel back and forth) and trips to their office. Now compare that to using Network&Golf to capture a meeting and then having a relaxing 18 with 3 potential clients at a time:

The math adds up. Doing business on the links is not a luxury, it’s a savvy strategy to build better relationships and grow your business.

Share your success story with us!


Advice From a Pro

In golf there are a lot of choices out there to be made. For example, should you use one ball position for all clubs or move it around? Should you chip like you putt or chip with wrist hinge? When searching for a better game one seeks advice-this comes in the form of varying and at times conflicting statements on the same subject. This debate has been around as long as golf has.

The truth is, there all correct to some degree. No matter how much we want to help everybody, golf instruction is rarely universal. It is individualized based on variables like situation, skill level, or physical makeup.

The only thing we have in common, is that we are different. Some of us are right-handed/left. Some play a high fade-swing with a little inside-out. That old college knee injury makes one lean to one side. One design for a golf club will never be perfect for all of us. There is no sameness in golf. This game is played by different people in different ways. All have different swings, each shaped under different conditions. The swing is put to a test on each hole, and its honed by an infinite number of different factors.

If you want to get more insight; then please take a moment and step up to the tee with Network&Golf!!

Jeff deCoen
USGTF Certified Teaching Professional
LIFE Team Member
LPGA Caddie/Coach/ Golf  Consultant
Living Intentionally For Excellence

Relationship Sales

770 marketing images daily. 5 new contacts daily. 10 sales calls daily. 300 emails daily. 2,500 new content posts on your area of expertise daily (this one is totally a guess.)

How do you stand out?

The holy grail of any sales person is the ability to get the appointment that reaps time to build a relationship with a prospective client. Perhaps you’ll meet 3-4 times prior to closing a deal; maybe more. If you’re lucky, after a couple meetings you’ll get some time on the golf course with them. Smart business leaders know that 4 hours on the links proves to be just as valuable for the client as it is for the salesman. Several studies have actually verified that business owners whom golf earn 17% more than those who don’t while 84% of executives surveyed found golf to be an important currency in the business world. It simply gets you where you need to be, faster.

So what if you don’t golf?

Well, it’s time to learn. NetworkAndGolf ( will be creating handicap specific networking events starting spring of 2017. You can learn the sport with other business leaders while you get to grow your business. Visit their site to get an early invitation.

And if you do golf?

Join golf networking groups or leverage NetworkAndGolf ( to meet the people you want (and need) to meet directly on the links. Stop wasting time looking for appointments. In late spring you’ll be able to invite others to golf and set up tee times for both of you in seconds. You’ll be able to see whose golfing and join foursomes while you travel or at home with other business golfers looking to network.

Here are some other steps to help you build better relationships and stand out from your competition:

  1. Do your homework

Do you pick up the phone and call someone and have nothing to talk about besides getting an appointment or selling your wares? This happens to me 10 times a day from solicitors. When I pick up a phone and someone has done his homework (i.e. has read things I’ve posted, knows about my companies, has checked out my Facebook page and has taken a genuine interest…) that’s a call that’s easier to take.

2. Appropriately target your audience first.

While I was in temporary housing and looking for a new home, I started becoming aware of the irrelevant phone calls and email I received. I received calls from contractors, solar panel and electric companies, landscaping companies and more. In several cases, I asked if they knew my current address (an apartment complex), which they did. Why I wondered, would they be wasting their time with me?

What do you do when you receive irrelevant (read “annoying”) calls or emails? If you’re like me, you permanently block them with your phone or spam filter – never giving them an opportunity to spam or call you again.

What if those contractors were instead reaching out to build relationships with realtors who were selling outdated homes? They could then become part of the sale process – a far better way to reach me.

3. Don’t sell!

Dear Lord, don’t sell! Build. Build relationships, connections, rapport, laugh… going in for the sale will NOT build a relationship. Yes, there are some exceptions. Every time you go for the sale first, you risk the relationship forever. Take your time. Once the rapport is built, you’ll be surprised how easily the sale can come.

84% of sales are built on trust. -Gallup poll 2014

So please, please, don’t cheat on the golf course.

Colleen Ferrary is the founder of Small Business USA and CEO and Founder of NetworkAndGolf. She has been helping businesses grow for 30 years.

Selecting the Right Golf Clubs for Your Game

Choosing the Right Clubs for your golf game

Selecting the Right Golf Clubs to Drive Your Game

Choosing the Right Clubs for your golf gameGolf is a gentleman’s game. Stalwarts of the game usually mull over which club to choose. A golf club can make or mar your game. You should be well informed before buying your golf clubs. Here are a few guidelines for choosing the apt club for a great game.

Golf rules allow you to carry a maximum of 14 clubs. They are

  • Driver
  • Fairway Wood
  • Hybrid
  • Iron Set (4 – PW, AW or SW)
  • Wedge (SW and/or LW)
  • Putter

The 4 principal categories of golf clubs are woods, irons, wedges, and putters. These have several components common to all the golf clubs available in the market today. They are the grip, shaft, hosel and club head.

Firstly, you need to decide between an expensive but lighter graphite shaft and a steel shaft. Graphite shaft will allow greater swing and greater speed to increase the distance, especially if you are a beginner. Steel shaft is for accomplished players and they help you to be accurate. Professional players love the feel of steel more than graphite.

Secondly, you have to choose from five different types of flexes of shafts. The range is from ladies shaft with the most flexibility to extra stiff shafts that barely bend. When in doubt, you can consult a professional fitter who can help determine the speed of your club head. Alternately, you can buy one by judging how far the ball travels after you hit it with a driver.

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Thirdly, you should choose a club head made up of titanium or steel. Titanium is more expensive than steel and lighter. With less weight, the drivers’ club heads can have larger surface which will make it difficult to mishit the ball. Graphite shafts and Titanium heads are the best combination for a golpher.

golf clubs on greenFinally, you have to combine your woods, clubs, irons and wedges to make the most of your game. Most people replace irons by hybrids because it is easy. There are many kinds of wedges to choose from. The gap wedge or the approach wedge, the sand wedge, pitching wedge and the lob wedge are the commonest. The putter is the most important club in any bag. There are two types of putters 1. Blade putter and 2.Mallet putter.

Which club should you use?

A driver can be used to swing a ball for 230 yards, 3 wood – 210 yards, 2-iron – 190 yards, 3-iron – 180 yards, 4-iron – 170 yards, 5-iron – 160 yards, 6-iron – 150 yards, 7-iron – 140 yards, 8-iron – 130 yards, 9-iron – 120 yards, a pitching wedge – 110 yards, a sand wedge – 90 yards and a lob wedge – 65 yards.

 Care for your clubs.

If you look after your clubs, they will look good and last long.

Always clean the club face with a towel after each shot.

Use a tee to clean the grooves.

Clean your grips with lukewarm water and soap.

Stay up to date on all the latest golf news, info and more.  Join our newsletter.

Join us every Wednesday 9pm ET and Friday 12pm ET to talk Golf…LIVE.  

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Why are Country Clubs and Golf Courses losing their appeal? 

Have County Clubs Lost Their Appeal

Country Clubs and Golf Courses Are Struggling, Why?

“Golf is a good walk spoiled.”  Mark Twain

Have County Clubs Lost Their AppealCountry Clubs and Golf Courses across the United States are struggling, but why?  Are people not interested in golfing?  Are costs too high?  Or maybe Country Clubs and Golf Courses are their own worst enemies, not keeping up with the times.

According to the National Golf Foundation, the number of golfers in the United States has dropped by almost one-fifth since 2003. And golfers are playing fewer rounds. In 2013 U.S. golfers played four hundred and sixty-two million rounds; this might sound like quite a lot but Golf Datatech reports that is the lowest number since 1995.

Only fourteen new golf courses were built in the United States in 2013, yet one hundred and fifty-eight closed. Things have been going downhill since the global financial crisis hit in 2007. But that’s not the only reason.

Baby boomers were expected to tee-off in droves but they seem to prefer other pursuits, like trekking the Andes or surfing the breaks in Hawaii. As for the millennials: who needs to spend six hours glad-handing on a golf-course when you can do your networking with a hand-held device? Gen Xers have been squeezed every which way financially so an expensive, elitist sport that takes all day isn’t for them either.

Gone are the days when Dad could disappear on Saturday and leave Mom with the kids. These days, fathers are more likely to be the chauffeur who takes their offspring to their various sporting activities.

It is not just the clubs that are struggling. Sellers of golf clothing and equipment are also feeling the pinch. Earlier this year national retailer, Dick’s Sporting Goods, laid off hundreds of employees in its golf division. Sporting goods manufacturers like Nike and Adidas have taken a hit in earnings due to the slowdown in recreational golf. Television ratings for golf have also declined.

Country Clubs, once the holy grail of middle-class aspiration, are suffering too. People no longer join because their parents belonged or to get a foot-hold in local business networks. Once the bastions of old money and gracious living, surviving clubs are relaxing dress codes and dropping fees in an attempt to attract new members. While some of the very top clubs may be holding the line, those that were built to appeal to corporate middle managers are in desperate competition for survival. With retrenchment cutting a swathe through corporate ranks, many clubs have lost their base.

Country ClubNot all commentators see doom and gloom in this situation, some believe that it’s just about recalibrating an oversupply problem. Ed Weathers, former senior editor at Golf Digest believes that the high end clubs with swathes of emerald grass and top-dollar fees will survive, as will the smaller courses, with low annual fees where people go with only one thing in mind: to play golf.

And while golf might be declining in popularity in the United States, it seems to be on the up in China. Despite an official ban on building new golf courses, Chinese state media reports that the number of courses in China increased from two hundred in 2004 to six hundred in 2015.

Seems the burgeoning Chinese middle class have gold-plated aspirations too.

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Can Golf Appeal to the Next Generation?

Golf and Business for the Next Generation

Golf and Business for the Next Generation

Can Golf Appeal to the Next Generation?

Let’s just get it out of the way; golf is an elitist’s sport.  Typically only high-powered executives, well to do business owners and old money family members are found at the country club.  Country club memberships are expensive and sometimes exclusive.

The next generation of entrepreneurs, business owners and executives have advantages (or disadvantages depending on your thoughts) because of the technology available today.  It’s far easier to meet people today than in generations past.  Meetings, conversations and networking can happen instantly thanks to smartphones, computers and high-speed internet.  So why would the next generation of entrepreneurs, business owners and executives ever consider golf?

The Upside:

Technology is great, and we’re all using it but have you ever participated in a meeting with someone who was constantly distracted by said technology, or disconnected because they’re answering email and text?  Can you shake a hand over the internet (not yet)?  Is body language obvious on a skype call or video conference call?  Probably not..

In our previous blog post we discussed 10 Important Golf Etiquette tips.  Among the tips included things such as not talking when another player is taking their swing, ensuring you play your ball where it lies, and not crossing in front of another player’s path to the hole on the green.  The reason for these tips is really just common courtesy.  If someone chooses to ignore these rules on the golf course is this someone you really want to do business with?  That was the overall theme of the previous blog post.

Well you can’t establish a person’s personality over the internet as well as you can on a golf course for 4 hours.  Golf will show you how someone responds during times of stress, challenge, embarrassment, not being the best, and temptation to lie or cheat.  Spend 4 or 5 hours with someone on the golf course and you will know whether or not you want to do business with them.

You cannot learn that much about a person over a conference call, email or skype.  You can’t even learn that much about a person during a 1 ½ hour face to face network meeting.  The fastest way to learn about how a person reacts to different situations is on a golf course.

How Does Golf Appeal to the Next Generation?

Society is at a cross roads when it comes to being social.  Facebook, Twitter, Instagram allow us to communicate instantly and frequently without ever actually talking over the phone or in person.  Text messages mean we never have to pick up the phone to talk.  Dating sites allow us to find a mate without fear of rejection or social interaction.  Our society has adopted these things as the norm.  There are even apps that match golfers up with other golfers in the area..what a great convenience.

Golf Networking for the Next GenerationI just said it..that’s how we appeal to the next generation.  We need Golf apps & networking opportunities and appealing to the business savvy entrepreneurs and executives who are looking to get ahead.  Country clubs have to adopt social media as part of their marketing campaign.

And an organization that brings people together for the purpose of networking and golf while utilizing a bit of the old school method of past generations (and current), and the new school approach of the next (and current) generation of using technology to communicate with their peers would catapult future generations to the golf courses and country clubs.  And Jordan Spieth will also help grow another generation of golfers!

The Back-9 Boardroom is such an organization.  Our intent is to grow networking groups of business owners and executives who want to meet other business owners and executives to learn more about them, on the golf course.  It’s almost a guarantee that after 18 rounds you will know whether or not you want to conduct business with another person.

It’s promising that whenever I visit a golf course I often witness a group of kids learning to play the game of golf.  It’s also promising that there are groups out there whose purpose is to get more children involved in the sport of golf.  My own son has expressed an interest in golf without ever having played.

The 18th Hole!

Golf can, and already is appealing to the next generation.  In fact I see different generations golfing together all the time, sometimes 3 different generations in the same foursome.  The future is bright so long as everyone adopts the changes in society and incorporates them into the golf universe.  Remember this truth that still holds today, the biggest deals are closed on the golf course.  Are you missing out?

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