Book a Court SUCCESS STORY
How casual court hire increased revenue and connected a club to its community
PĀPĀMOA TENNIS CLUB, WESTERN BAY OF PLENTY
Pāpāmoa Tennis Club prides itself on a friendly and relaxed vibe that reflects its coastal community. Twelve hard and four astrograss courts use ClubSpark software and Book a Court hardware to serve 330 members, a professional coaching business, and a host of casual players. There are both intra- and inter-club competitive opportunities and an active social calendar that includes Love Tennis.
In early 2021, the club had an “ambitious committee keen to explore a modern approach to administering tennis” including easier court booking and access for members and casual players.
- Prior to this, visitors could hire courts by phoning the club secretary and seeing if they were available to meet them to open the court gate.
- The club estimate they generated a handful of dollars from casual court hire each year.
- Members accessed courts via a static keypad using a code that was updated at the start of each membership year.
- The club had a free Sporty website with basic functionality that was starting to look dated.
Club management software fully funded by Tennis NZ.
Book a Court
Hardware with integrated lighting and electric gates. The club took advantage of the subsidy scheme on offer and contributed 20% of the hardware installation cost, with Tennis NZ covering the remaining 80%.
Club volunteer, Gerald, attended a regional Tennis NZ ClubSpark roadshow in July 2021 which boosted confidence in making the switch to the fully funded software.
“Importing the old data was a bit complex, but the roadshow allowed us to work through it together face to face which was wonderful. Another bonus was getting to network with the other club reps who would be managing ClubSpark in their respective clubs.
We made a few errors with the initial set-up, but nothing fatal, and having Aaron at Tennis NZ to chat with was really helpful and reassuring.”
“Casual court hire opened the world up for us.”
- The club made over $6,000 in casual court hire revenue within 18 months of the hardware installation.
- Data from ClubSpark led the club to establish a vacation membership package – based on their understanding of dates and volume of court usage from holidaymakers.
- Book a Court has connected the club to its community by making the facility more accessible.
- Made the club ball machine a bookable item and now it’s used more than ever.
- Members that frequently book courts outside of club sessions still have the easy court access that the old keypad entry gave them, but the addition of online booking gives them 100% confidence they’ll get a hit.
- Members love the automated light function if they book after dark.
“We started taking casual bookings online on 1st August 2021. Casual usage immediately shot up because of convenience. We went from having a handful of dollars in our honesty box each year to 259 paid casual bookings by the end of February 2022 – some people booking for 2 hours straight! Most of the bookings were during January over the school holidays when the ASB Classic and Australian Open were on TV and in the news.”
With no marketing budget, the club is reliant on the Book a Court flyers and fence banner provided by Tennis NZ, being on the Tennis NZ ‘where to play’ website, and volunteers sharing information in local neighbourhood groups on Facebook.
The club committee has the confidence to hire summer staff for an even better visitor experience – being able to offer onsite extras like racquet and ball hire.
“We realise how much the buzz of tennis hits NZ in the summer and want our club to be prepared for it. So, we will be brave next summer and actually advertise Book a Court at Pāpāmoa.”