Sponsored story: Thorndon Park Golf Club’s marketing boost after using drone photography

Martyn Clapham
By Martyn Clapham August 6, 2015 10:35

Thorndon Park Golf Club has seen a big change as a result of a marketing strategy that includes the addition of a new website, introduced in June.


Featuring stunning drone photography, including aerial video and stills from Stockport based AirPixa, the site gives an enticing introduction to the joys of the club and course to members and visitors alike.

Club manager James Fuller said: “We wanted to reach people’s emotions and promote the club as exactly what it is. We are a traditional club with history and values but new members and visitors are made to feel very welcome.

“I believe it is important that clubs seek out their own USP when they are marketing their offer.

“We are a blend of tradition and innovation and we seek to show that in whatever we do. The clubhouse has been modernised and is warm and welcoming. But it has kept its traditional feel that is part of its charm and is something we do not want to lose because it is part of the attraction.

“These days it is absolutely vital to for all golf clubs to market themselves correctly. Anybody not doing this is missing a trick.

“There is so much competition out there it’s down to who is shouting loudest so find your position in the market, focus on it and then specifically target the marketplace that will pay for your product and come back for more.”

James, who is also company secretary at Thorndon Park, has responsibilities covering the entire spectrum of management and financial activity at the club.

He has overseen significant increases in internal and external income, and profit margins at a time when the club has witnessed a 20 per cent increase in interest in membership.

Drone photography employed by Thorndon Park and an increasing number of clubs up and down the country has become a valuable marketing tool for golf clubs that can embed promotional videos and images on their websites and post links to their on social media.

Several specialist companies such as AirPixa provide their services to golf clubs using unobtrusive drones with high quality cameras and gimbals providing stunning images.

Commercial companies are licensed by the Civil Aviation Authority, fully insured and crewed by two-man team of a drone pilot and a separate camera operator. They can usually provide HD quality imagery and some of the best offer scripts written by golf PR agencies and journalists with voiceovers read by actors.

They can also be used to present a true overhead view of each hole, which can be incorporated into clubs’ online course guides on their websites that prove useful for players plotting their way around a course they may not have tackled before.

Drone photography and filming, once the preserve of the military, is now a cost effective way of showing golf courses and facilities in their true glory from a viewpoint previously the preserve of passing birds. Thanks to a fall in prices and advances in technology, drones have opened up a new marketing tool to many clubs.

“We are AirPixa. We have just broken into the market and specialise in the provision of aerial photography and promotional video production. Ideally suited to locations such as golf courses, our videos and aerial photos show your facilities off in all their glory,” said a company spokesman.

“Our work is creative, fun and professional. We cover all production stages, such as advanced editing, royalty-free music, voiceover and hosting.

“Today’s world is a visual one. People don’t just want to read about something any more, they want to see it and experience it for themselves, even whilst sat on their sofa at home. This is especially true for sporting and leisure attractions such as golf courses. Potential customers want to be reassured of the quality of a location before travelling to it.

“Our photographs and video productions are used to promote, businesses, events, residential and commercial developments, golf course flyovers, schools and workplaces.

“Why choose AirPixa for your golf club flyovers? Producing visual marketing materials for golf courses is our speciality. Our experience with venues such as Thorndon Park and Boyce Hill in Essex allows us to tailor our video productions to best suit the needs of each individual club.

“Our cameras and aircrafts give us the flexibility to produce crystal clear photographs, videos of your golf course and our high definition internal photography shows off your club house and hospitality facilities.

“Our aerial view shows the true beauty of the course and the surroundings and the flyover video shows the variations and intricacies of each hole, allowing potential golfers to visualise playing the course and so convert them into a member.

“We are fully qualified and CAA approved holding a current Permission for Aerial Work (PFAW).”

For more information, visit http://www.airpixa.co.uk/golf-course-flyover-photography.html


Martyn Clapham
By Martyn Clapham August 6, 2015 10:35
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