Magazine article Parks & Recreation

Building Relationships and Communication Are Keys to Patronage, Loyalty and Satisfaction. (Armed Forces Recreation Society)

Magazine article Parks & Recreation

Building Relationships and Communication Are Keys to Patronage, Loyalty and Satisfaction. (Armed Forces Recreation Society)

Article excerpt

Everyone knows that a good tip from a friend about a service or product makes an impact on your opinion. Testimonials work. And places that feel like a second home, where "everybody knows your name, and they're always glad you came," are appealing. You can enhance the patronage of your agency by improving customer loyalty and satisfaction.

Using these marketing avenues, MWR professionals at Fort George G. Meade created a new program, Lane to Links, that was so successful that it was selected by Community and Family Support Center as a concept to use Army-wide. Lanes to Links attracted 120 players in 2001, and 144 participants in 2002. After the first year, 37 golf courses Army-wide considered the duo-tournament, and 11 actually conducted Lanes to Links.

Lanes to Links participants bowled in the morning and golfed in the afternoon, with continental breakfast at the bowling center, lunch at the golf patio grill, and then steak, baked potato and corn on the cob at an evening awards banquet at the golf clubhouse. Recognition was given to overall champions as well as out to four places for best bowling and best golfing. Awards were also given for perfect games closest to pin; worst overall; worst golfing; and worst bowling. All participants also received a thank-you letter signed by the garrison commander.

Why bring these sports together? Easy marketing. Golf and bowling at Fort George G. Meade accentuate competitive advantage in each pro shop, lesson-learning sessions, member tournaments and lots of employee-customer interaction. …

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