Recently I was asked why I say “lower the point of entry” in a lot of my golf marketing videos and blogs as opposed to “lower the barrier to entry”? Both are actually correct but I prefer “lower the point of entry” because price points are prices at which demand for a given product, e.g., golf, is supposed to stay relatively high and barrier to entry refers to industries that have conscientiously set up obstacles in hopes of keeping people or companies from entering a specific industry and/or market.
In the golf business, the old paradigm was charge as much as possible because most golf clubs had a monopoly on their market and could charge any price they wanted; this was not necessarily done to “keep people out” (although I am sure there were, and still are a few golf clubs that want to keep certain people out but the majority just want to run a good business) but more for economics and social status. Because there was very little competition (inventory), golf clubs were able to set their price points as high as they wanted because golfers had very few choices where to play their rounds.
But those days are gone and we are not celebrating the 90’s anymore. Yes, the 90’s was great for the golf industry but they were also destructive as well. Everyone was making so much money in the 90’s, it made everyone else want to get in the business and soon it was over built. Golf clubs are struggling and need golfers. The last thing they want to do is put up obstacles (barriers) to keep people from entering the game of golf. Today, it’s all about growing the game, not keeping people out.
We could say we have to lower the barrier to enter the game of golf from a financial standpoint but that would imply we set up financial barriers to keep golfers out when that is not the reality. We could say we must lower our price points, but that too, would be incorrect because we just want to lower the price point at the point of entry but not across the board, because we still must raise as much revenue as possible to stay in business and make a profit. So I coined another phrase “lower the point of entry” which means make it easier for the golfer to get started by lowering the upfront cost of an introductory offering (new product for getting golfers to the door), but still maintain your current pricing structure and business model for those golfers who want and can afford the premium product. If the new golfer can afford the premium product and wants to upgrade their status in the club, it is available. Lowering the barrier to entry, is discounting golf; “lowering the point of entry” is innovating new revenue streams. Just by simply eliminating the negative word “barrier” from your golf marketing vocabulary, you will yield better results.
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