Raising Money with Golf Events
Golf events offer enormous potential for raising funds. Over 800,000 golf tournaments are held in the U.S. each year. While the average golf event only raises $5000 with 72 players, the big events can raise up to $300,000. How do they do it? The Golf Tournament Association of America (GTAA) studied many of the largest events in the country and discovered common elements for success. With these strategies, you can make your next golf tournament a huge success.
In general, golfers have extra income. Give them more and they’ll spend more. If you create a memorable experience, they’ll come back year after year.
Well-Connected Committee Members. Your committee helps you obtain everything you need for your event from sponsors to auction items. Make sure your committee members are well-connected in the community—the movers and shakers in your area. Assign each member to manage one area of responsibility: sponsorships, golfers, gifts/prizes, operations, PR and auctions. Train them, hold them accountable and reward them for their efforts.
Unique Money-Making Formats. Scrambles usually don’t make much money. To double or triple your revenue, consider these formats:
- Pro-Ams: put a local golf pro with each foursome and triple your ticket price.
- Celeb-Ams: place a local celebrity (athlete, politician, newscaster, etc.) in each foursome and raise the registration fees.
- Golf-A-Thons: find 40 golfers to raise pledges for each hole. With 100 holes of golf, you can raise $50,000 to $150,000.
Great Golf Course. Private country clubs are the perfect venue—golfers will pay more to play a course they don’t normally get to play.
High-Income Golfers. Sponsors want to reach high-income golfers, such as lawyers and doctors. Ask your committee members to recruit their contacts who fit this description.
Big Sponsors. All companies want one thing: more business! Develop sponsor packages that give your sponsors new business and marketing opportunities. Like golfers, businesses will pay more if you give them more.
Sell Sponsors’ Goods & Services. Give your sponsors a way to sell to your golfers. Send golfers to sponsor’s stores or offices to sign up for a discount. Run ads for sponsors on your tournament website and in your marketing materials.
Add an Auction. Whether live, silent or online, auctions turn regular events into huge events. The bigger the items, the more money you’ll make. Give golfers something worth buying: trips, celebrity memorabilia and appliances.
Strategic Partnerships. Consider partnering with a for-profit corporation to deliver a successful golf tournament. For instance, United Way handles all the details and their partner Publix Supermarkets brings in the big sponsors. Vendors mean big money.
With these strategies, you can create a successful and memorable event that golfers will look forward to year after year.
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