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Take a moment to envision scrolling through your Facebook news feed. While doing so, you scroll past two posts titled “Tiger’s Impressive Swing”—one is an article … another is a video. Which do you click? If you chose the video, then your response aligns with 80% of online users. Digital content has transformed immensely over the years—and video is the number one medium changing today’s digital landscape. So what does this mean for the private club industry?
In a recent installment of Perspectives from the Other Side, Chambers’ EVP, Skip Avery, helps club leaders understand how pressing ‘record’ can transform member engagement. To continue the conversation, we spoke with Corey Saban, former press-winning television broadcaster and current co-founder of Newstation (named 2018 Member Engagement Tool of The Year by BoardRoom Magazine), who gave us an inside look at how influential video really is and how greatly club leaders can benefit from this versatile medium.
Today, regardless of generation or geographic location, almost everyone is mobile. Currently, the most visited site is, undoubtedly, Google … but the second most visited? YouTube. Video is here to stay, and according to Saban, it’s the future. Saban experienced the growing success of video first-hand during his trajectory as a television broadcaster. And in today’s tech-savvy world, these videos can be created with a tap of a button and uploaded almost instantaneously. The days of bulky camcorders are long gone with the development of smartphones and new applications like Snapchat and Facebook/Instagram stories simplifying short-form video. Years ago, Saban began taking note of this transition as more and more people started pressing ‘play’ on their mobile devise to watch news clips rather than picking up their remote control.
And so, in 2009, Saban’s intuition led him to create Newstation—a business that affordably converts written content for companies of all sizes—including private clubs—into anchor-driven news videos for internal or external use. Their team of experienced news professionals adapts client-written press releases, company updates, and blog posts for a video audience with the help of professional news anchors who deliver the information flawlessly. Today, in a world where everyone is scrolling, Newstation presents a uniquely beneficial and fresh way for club leaders to get highlights in front of their membership and community, respectively.
“When clubs hand out flyers regarding an upcoming event, they tend to get lost or left behind,” says Saban. “Today, everything we want—from news bits to event information—can be found on our phone.” A video can get your message across in a more compelling way and generate excitement and buzz throughout the club. “We encourage our private club clients to not only send out their video internally but also share them on their public social platforms and website. This way the video is broadcast everywhere—boosting engagement and highlighting exactly what it’s like to be a member at that club,” he notes.
Saban also advises to, “Come up with a plan—create a video strategy, and follow through. Consistency is key.” Brett Morris, General Manager of the Polo Club of Boca Raton, experienced this firsthand when he engaged Newstation to create videos for his club. “The difference between text and video is the number of click-through rates we’ve received. They’ve gone up dramatically! And members are actually talking about how exciting the videos are versus reading text in an email,” noted Morris.
There are many different routes club leaders can take when creating a video strategy. If you’re looking to post culture-based content, then share clips from club events and various happenings around your facilities. Here, it’s extremely important to keep these videos authentic as to capture—and share—an accurate depiction of your club’s atmosphere and culture. Each private club has a unique personality that’s inherently their own; highlight that uniqueness and you’ll quickly attract new members that further complement that dynamic.
Video can also be used to create targeted campaigns. “We worked with a club in Georgia who sent videos to those who had recently visited, including a CTA to ‘buy now’ before dues go up at the start of the New Year,” recalls Saban—a tactic that was highly successful. Additionally, internal videos can be created to showcase member highlights. Video creates a sense of nostalgia, and it’s a wonderful tool to show highlight reels of what members—and their families—have been up to. For example, member success stories like grandchildren graduating high school, a family member getting married, or a charity event that was hosted at the club can be shared via video slideshow to foster a sense of community between members.
“Today, many private clubs have a beautifully produced marketing video on their homepage,” says Saban, “and it easily cost them around $20,000 to implement.” Worth it? We think so. But video efforts often end there—most often due to cost. Today, due to accessibility, club leaders can continue creating captivating videos that are much more affordable than ever before. “Clubs that use these flashy videos on their homepage attract new members with an innovative digital presence, but once members are in the door, they generally resort back to handing out paper flyers to those same people,” notes Saban. “Instead, clubs should continue to use video clips wherever possible to showcase various elements of their club experience.”
The evolution of social media is the number one driver for digital marketing today. Platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram give us access to free marketing opportunities while still reaching hundreds—even thousands of people. Presently, 500 million people watch Facebook videos every day (Tubular Insights), and social video generates 1200% more shares than text and image content combined (Wordstream). Use these platforms to your advantage, create content that aligns with the statistics, and your marketing efforts will surely reap the benefits.
And this type of marketing and communication shouldn’t end with social events. For years, clubs have documented major golf course or clubhouse renovation milestones with before and after images posted on their website or social media. “Next time,” advises Saban, “Try posting a video walk-through along the way to take current and prospective members on the journey with you.” A picture is worth a thousand words, right? Well, according to Forrester Research, one minute of video is worth 1.8 million words. That’s pretty powerful.
“Industry data shows that if you don’t capture an online viewer’s attention in 8 seconds, they move on,” states Saban. “So ideally, videos that are 60 seconds or less are most effective.” On Facebook and Instagram, videos begin playing automatically as you scroll past, and a moving picture is far more eye-catching than a still image.
And while we’ve touched on how simple it is to create and upload videos—it is also important to pay attention to the quality of these videos. Saban advises that seven out of 10 people have a negative perception of poor-quality video—regardless of how great the content is. So ensuring your club’s videos are high-quality is crucial to ensuring you keep a user’s attention. This is where companies like Newstation come in to help clubs create high-quality, affordable videos that paint your club, brand, or event in the right light.
Certainly, if you enjoy being in front of the camera, then press ‘record’ as often as possible—however, if that isn’t your forte, a company like Newstation can be a huge asset. Historically, creating professional videos (that don’t include a smartphone) would cost clubs thousands of dollars. Newstation has simplified the process, making it cost-effective to produce professional videos in a short amount of time. Of course, short clips to show member highlights and fun events can be done via smartphone—so please, record away! But having professional broadcasters and video editors in your back pocket can help boost your club’s video efforts immensely.
Our point? Your members (current and prospective) are active people leading busy lives; and with a plethora of information quite literally at their fingertips, it’s important to create content that grabs their attention and adds value. An engaged membership is a happy membership and from there it’s a ripple effect. So go ahead and capture that excitement—press record.
Has your club utilized video recently? Comment below with success stories! And for more insights on how video can boost engagement, click here.
Hoping to chat with Corey Saban regarding Newstation’s services? Click here to contact him!