Carly Sostheim, Director of Membership, The Clubs by JOE
“Someone is sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.” –Warren Buffet
We often find ourselves so focused on growth and how to reach the next step of success (or budget for that matter!) that we forget the processes that get us there. In the Club Management sector, it’s especially easy to focus on future amenities coming down the pipeline and the booming real estate market. When we lose focus on the implementation and streamlining of processes, we fail to reach our true potential of growth that we wish to achieve.
Nestled within beautiful planned communities, natural coastal surroundings and gracious, southern hospitality, you’ll find The Clubs by JOE and located on the beachfront corridor of Hwy. 30A on the Gulf of Mexico, we are a collection of Northwest Florida’s most prestigious properties. In 2013, we made a strategic business decision to merge three stand-alone private Clubs into one Membership, offering exclusive amenities marked by the quality and excellence that the St. Joe Company has been known for as a pacemaker for over a quarter of a century.
As a result of the unified Club model with Camp Creek Golf Club, Shark’s Tooth Golf Club and WaterSound Beach Club, The Clubs by JOE has increased Membership over 54% in the past five years alone. As a Club Management team, we have focused on many different processes and systems that emphasize improving the digital customer experience. In turn, this personal touch to the overall digital experience has allowed us to scale our Membership and put us on the map as the right destination of a luxury private Club.
The use of multiple digital platforms has been essential to the interaction between our Members and the Club. By strategically planning emails, event management software, mobile APP, print publications and text messaging services, we’ve learned that these collectively are what create the personal touch for Members and better the digital customer experience. By utilizing online event registration, we have increased the number of members that participate in social events and creating stronger relationships amongst fellow Members. The most recent implementation of the Mobile APP, a branch of the Club website, has provided the ability to deliver announcements through push notifications, provide accounting statements and deliver a real-time Member roster database at the Members’s fingertips.
Most importantly, the interaction that the Member is having with the Club through all platforms is more favorable as it is also more often. Repetition has proven to be essential. The semi-annual Member Magazine speaks genuinely of this as Members anticipate the Magazine each summer and winter. While also getting delivered to Members mailboxes, having the publication in the Clubs and throughout hotels and resorts in the area is a continual representation of who we are and our commitment to grow year over year.
By providing ourselves efficient and effective working methods and processes, this has allowed us to look ahead and anticipate growth in Membership sales as well as devote attention to other systems that have potential to be streamlined to better the Member experience. In turn, all of the processes and policies put in place through Club Management have increased the value of the Membership for the Member. If we allow ourselves to focus on today and the now, we are not understanding the impact and importance that these processes have on our ability to grow. Always look ahead but never forget the methods that allowed your Club to be where you are today.