Get the most from every stroke with the Golf.nl app

Gertjan van Laar
Business Consultant

More enjoyment in the game

Golf is a surprisingly versatile sport that can be played whenever, with whomever and wherever you want. The NGF (Royal Dutch Golf Federation) is committed to making the sport more attractive to both beginners and experienced players. Driving more pleasure into playing the game and raising the quality of golf are the credo. Laik and Redhotminute have joined forces to achieve these goals with a personalised app and the my zone in Golf.nl. "It is the Runkeeper or Strava in the world of golf apps. It can be regarded as an equal to those apps," says Maarten Voermans, NGF Marketing and Communication Manager.

Intensive pitch trajectory

After an intensive pitch trajectory at the end of last year the NGF entered into a collaboration with Laik and Redhotminute. "We were seeking a partner that is specialised in Sitecore CMS and could take our platform to the next level to encourage golfers to feel more engaged with the sport" says Maarten.

Take the time to get to know each other

He continues: "For the NGF the development and launch of the app is a long term investment. It is critical to the selection process that our partner is of the same mind. That means taking the time to get to know one another, to brainstorm and discuss any potential improvements that can be made. This is a shared interest. Without this there is no bond, no mutual understanding and thus no long term relationship."

OutSystems, Xamarin and Sitecore

That their long term creative partner Laik would be active in the creation of the concept, the interactive design and the visual design of the app was never open to question. Maarten: "They understand the world of golf and they know exactly which buttons to press to fire our enthusiasm." He continues: "Laik asked if they could pitch with one of their partners since they are aware of the frustrations that we have endured with some of our previous collaborations. We thought this was a good idea." That's how Redhotminute became involved, in this case only for the technical realisation. This realisation included the implementation of an entirely new member database in the Rapid Application Development tool OutSystems and the creation of an integration layer between the front and back office systems. The iOS and Android app were constructed in the cross-platform technique Xamarin, the my-zone was developed in Sitecore.

Realistic solution

Maarten reflects: "We started in January. The start was positive and the scrum approach worked really well." The goal was to launch the app in May. "It quickly became apparent that with our requirements, that was too ambitious. As a consequence we had some extensive conversations with Redhotminute until we had found a mutually agreeable solution.

Online coach

The result of the close cooperation is an online coach that informs, motivates, activates and facilitates during the playing of the game, while encouraging improvement and refinement of skills. The app allows NGF members to record their scores and share them with their friends. The app also allows the user to compare and record their scores with the rest of the Netherlands. This functionality can be accessed in the my section of the Golf.nl website. This is where extra information and extra personal insight can be found. Maarten: "A unique feature of this app is that it is not linked to a club. Even if you and your friends are members of different clubs you can compare your scores. All data is stored in a central database."

Future development

There are already plenty of ideas for the future development of the app. We will start by looking at how the app is used in the coming months. "Sitecore is designed to give us more insight into the behaviour of the golfers. How often does he play and where? We can access all of this data and better focus our offerings to the golfer. For example, 'You play this particular course quite often. Would you like to become a member?' We will use this data and the feedback from the app users in the development of the app 2.0."

Joost Luiten

Laik added substantially to the launch campaign with a commercial featuring the Netherland’s highest ranking golfer Joost Luiten. He demonstrates the apps highlights in this video. 
Are you curious about the app and a member of the NGF? Download the iOS or Android version.