INCREASING REVENUE (with group travel)

Increasing revenue is the name of the game.  No business is out there to lose money or remain stagnant in its earnings.  Private clubs are no different.  There are several ways to increase revenue.  But only a few of them are fun, rewarding, and have a positive lasting effect on your membership through engagement and experiences.  Let’s talk Revenue, Loyalty, and Group Travel.

REVENUE:  When people buy additional services, revenue goes up.  It’s that simple.  So, let’s get your members into the club house and pro shop more often!  Let’s get your membership utilizing that great kitchen and magical chef you have.  Let’s encourage participation at the monthly meet ups or holiday banquet events.  Let’s incentivize them to bring guests to dinner or to play golf.  Let’s do all of this and then do what our parents and grandparents taught us: Say THANK YOU! 

LOYALTY:  Loyalty programs are everywhere from airlines to hotels to the movie theaters to your local coffee shop.  The philosophy behind a customer loyalty program is simple:  Repeat customers are rewarded (thanked) and businesses increase sales.

For instance, My Starbucks Rewards™, the coffee giant’s customer-retention program, significantly contributes to the company’s record growth.  Starbucks claims that the loyalty program played a key role in its 26 percent rise in profit and 11 percent jump in total revenue in 2013’s second quarter fiscal results.

A well-designed loyalty program can help any size business scale and reach new heights.  Small Businesses who adopt a customer loyalty program recognize the program makes more money than it costs.  In short, loyalty programs should matter to the private club industry.

Private clubs have a unique position.  They have a membership that pays annually to be a repeat customer.  In the public arena a repeat customer spends 67 percent more on a given purchase than a new customer does.  A member of a private club absolutely spends more than they would elsewhere.  It’s time to reward your members for this action.  Say thank you for the continued business and motivate them to continue to be the brand ambassador of the club.  Subtly encourage them to spread the word about the deals, the rewards, the experiences, the friendships, and the perks of being a member.

Competing against the large brands is difficult.  The famous restaurants, box stores, and online retailers have more marketing dollars and ability to offer lower prices.  However, a good customer loyalty program is an effortless way for a private club to show their personal side and remain competitive in spaces dominated by big business.

Chances are, your club’s point of sale software has the ability to track individual spending.  USE IT!  If a loyalty program was not bundled into your software when originally installed, perhaps its time to upgrade the software?  More and more software companies are recognizing the need to provide loyalty programs to small businesses; ask for it!

GROUP TRAVEL:  Group travel is a bonding experience.  Group travel is something everyone can look forward to.  Group travel provides a cost-effective way for people to do things they wouldn’t normally do but have always wanted to.  BUT as far as you, the private club, is concerned, group travel is the promotional tool and ultimate reward to be used within your loyalty program.  It’s the reward that you can use to drive profits, bring members together, increase food and beverage sales, boost catering and event bookings, and finally to drive membership enrollment.  Travel is the ultimate thank you for the member’s loyalty.

Consider this; your club has decided to announce the Inaugural Club Trip to Costa Rica in June 2018.  To promote this trip, the club is reaching out to all the members in January and February – contact is important.  The club house has planned an amazing Costa Rican themed dinner to generate excitement and bring the members together – new food and beverage revenue has just been realized.  Members are excited and are already planning who will be in their foursomes or which day they are going to go deep sea fishing for the prized Marlin and Sailfish!  Word of mouth is spreading around town about the value of the club’s trip.  AND THEN BOOM – the loyalty program is announced!

Members who spend x amount will receive points.  These points can earn tours, private dinners, or even room upgrades on the trip!  For the members who choose not to travel this year for whatever reason, they can accrue points throughout the fiscal year to pay for the club’s trip the following year; or buy-in to the club’s trip at a highly discounted rate in 2019.

SUMMATION:  To quickly recap:

  • Every club can increase its revenue through group travel
  • Customers love loyalty programs and will spend more to earn rewards especially if its travel related
  • Group travel will drive your loyalty program to great heights while increasing member engagement and loyalty

Think about how your club can use an annual group travel package to drive revenue, gain loyalty, and encourage member engagement.  Give us a call to brainstorm!   We’d be delighted to talk.


What on earth is a KOTERIE?

Hello and welcome to our blog.  I am delighted and honored you took the time to visit.  Like with any introduction and initial meeting, it is customary to make a proper introduction.  My name is Wes Snapp and I am the founder of Koterie Travels.

What in the world is Koterie you may ask….Well, as you may have seen throughout our site, we have the definition listed on every page:

Koterie: [koh-tuh-ree / koʊ tə ri]

[noun] : exclusive group of people that associate closely.

“a koterie of friends”
“a koterie of kindred spirits” (synonyms: clique, set, circle, inner circle, in crowd, band, community, gang)

Truth be told, this is a false spelling of the word with some creative license of definition.  The actual word is Coterie and according to Merriam-Webster is defined as an intimate and often exclusive group of persons with a unifying common interest or purpose.

The purpose of Koterie Travels is to provide pre-designed, cost effective premium travel packages to the semi-private and private club market.  We want to give each club the opportunity to provide group travel to their membership without all the hassle of coordinating the many details that make a group’s trip a success.

This naturally leads to the next two important questions: “Who is Wes Snapp and what makes him think he can do this better than I.”

Wes Snapp has been doing this a very long time for Fortune 500 companies.  But if you don’t mind, I am going to switch back to first person as it’s much easier to write.  When I moved to Costa Rica in 1998, I was employed by the Melia Playa Conchal in Guanacaste to be Group and Events Coordinator for the corporate incentive programs operating onsite.  These incentive travel programs are of the highest quality and demanded the utmost care in delivery and execution.   Every detail is triple confirmed and perfected come the date of the group’s arrival.  And I mean EVERYTHING.  From where the bellman would be standing to welcome the bus arrivals – to how the beds would be made – to what the floral decorations would be on the welcome night reception’s buffet line…. and the list goes on.

18 Months later, I am back in the USA with a firm understanding of what premium group travel service means and am working for DMS Incentives.  At DMS my role evolved from sourcing and contracting with the finest resorts in the Carribean and Americas to being the Vice President of Sales and Operation working directly with the C-Level decision makers.

All of the above results in 19 years of group travel purchasing, planning, communicating, and delivery with superior service. I have developed a vast network of hospitality professionals who represent every aspect necessary for success: hotel, resort, airline, local tour operators, and transportation companies to name a few. In short, I’ve been successfully doing this my entire career.

The final question you may have is “Why do you only have one destination?”

This is a simple answer – power of economy (or scale). We select a new destination every year that fits the needs of the semi-private and private clubs.  Koterie Travels uses the volume of groups to negotiate a group package that is the most cost effective in the industry. No travel agency or other organization can match the price considering the program inclusions, service, and delivery. As the number of groups we operate continues to grow, we recognize we may have to increase our offering to two or three destinations. Time will tell and only you, as a client, can help us in making that happen.

Traveling on a professionally orchestrated trip is something everyone should experience at least once. Having all the details handled for you is the only way to travel. Group vacations are that much easier when a private concierge, not a hotel concierge that attends to everyone in the hotel – but your private group concierge, is a local expert who is eager to help with local restaurant reservations, a private car and driver for the day, or arrange a tour to one of the many attractions around.

We look forward to delivering a perfect group vacation for your club’s membership,

Wes Snapp