The game-changing new affiliation model provides a unique opportunity for clubs to review their current membership categories and offerings. No longer restricted by the Member Association per member fee, now is the perfect time for clubs to modify, diversify and innovate how they engage with the local community, potential members and existing members.
Consumers are changing
Australian Sports Commission (ASC) research shows that just as society is changing, sports must too! Check out this short video from the ASC:
Consider new membership types and structures
Offer a reduced-cost membership that removes the cost barrier for students, young adults or seniors.
In partnership with the coach, offer forms of membership to participants who are part of coaching programs that provide a valuable benefit, for example, one-hour court hire free each month.
Targeted membership packages
Offer a membership targeted to a specific demographic of the community such as Night Tennis players, parents, part-time workers or retirees. A smaller annual fee, combined with a pay per play fee provides flexibility.
Offer a non-competition focused membership for players who don’t play all that often, but still like to have a social hit and be part of the club, especially the social activities! This type of membership could also engage parents or volunteers who infrequently play tennis to stay connected to the club longer.
Offer local businesses a specific membership and playing package that might include midweek court hire, business versus business competition events, corporate days that combine meeting/lunch with tennis, free coaching or limited number of Cardio Tennis sessions with the club coach.
Play and go
Some players may not be interested in being involved in club life. They primarily just want to play and go. Offer benefits of insurance, priority access to a competition or court hire if they register their details with the club. There is no commitment, but you can then communicate with this player about other club activities.
Applicable to couples who live together – same entitlement as full adult membership but targeted as younger couples (25–35)
Alternative lengths and conditions
Consider school holiday memberships (kids can play anytime), seasonal or three-month packages.
Conditional morning, midweek or weekender structures
Conditional based on playing access at particular times, so midweek membership could be cheaper because it is an “off-peak” time. Ideal for parents, part-time workers, students and retirees.
Offer more than just tennis
Add club merchandise such as a hat, drink bottle or polo to non-playing members, kids or family membership packages as inclusive of or as upgrades.
Money can’t buy experiences
Add non-tennis items such as an invite to an annual club or social event, or a sponsor’s offer card or vouchers to membership packages to provide greater value.
And don’t forget your traditional membership offerings
Full Adult membership
Allows members to use club facilities at all times they are open, compete in club tournaments, represent the club in midweek and weekend pennants, invitations to club social events and social tennis competitions etc.
Full Junior membership
Same as Full Adult membership entitlements.
Non-playing Social members
Connect with your past – tennis can be physically demanding. You may find that those members who leave the club, may only leave due to an inability to play tennis but would still like to be involved in the club. Offer social benefits and other perks such as invitations to social functions, a free bar tab, four playing visits per year.
Two adults, two children – same as Full Adult membership and Full Junior membership respectively
Consider developing a Reciprocal membership with another local sporting club. Doing this can possibly lead to a mutually advantageous relationship being created, which can lead to an increase in court usage and patronage for the club.
Establish an agreement
- When setting up the agreement with another sporting club, you should ensure the following:
- The agreement is going to be mutually beneficial for both clubs
- The agreement will encourage an increase in participation and court usage at the club
- Ensure the other club is insured for Public Liability, Products Liability and Professional Indemnity
- The agreement provides additional value for your members (for example, your members may enjoy discounted rates at the local golf course).