Sponsorship generally describes the promotion of individuals or groups through the donation of financial resources. In return, the sponsors, such as self-employed persons, companies, public enterprises or organisations, usually receive the right to communicative services such as naming or product placement. Sponsoring is therefore often done for marketing and communication purposes in addition to the promotion of the sponsored and the charitable goal.
Worldwide, sports sponsorship is by far the most important form of sponsorship. With the prevailing overabundance of advertising messages, the genuine emotions conveyed by sport in particular offer a valuable advantage. Sponsorship has also become indispensable in golf.
In 2019, Tiger Woods earned 42 million dollars from sponsorships from brands such as Nike, TaylorMade or Bridgestone alone, showing how effective golf is in terms of advertising. But the topic of sponsorship is also of great importance for golf facilities and golf clubs. The strategy consultancy Advant Planning and Deutsche Golf Sport GmbH have investigated the relevance of sponsoring for golf clubs within the framework of empirical market research and have shown which advantages targeted sponsor acquisition brings with it.
Income for golf clubs through sponsoring
For some years now, the German golf landscape has been changing. Waiting lists at golf facilities, exclusive memberships and the willingness to pay high fees are dwindling more and more. Flexibility and value for money are also playing an increasingly important role for players in golf. This inevitably leads to golf facilities and clubs no longer being able to finance themselves through membership fees alone. Guest green fees, tournaments and sponsorships are increasingly becoming important economic factors for facilities.
Especially the development of a revenue-strong sponsorship structure makes a valuable contribution. According to the study by Advant Planning, the average income at the 163 golf courses surveyed per sponsor amounts to about 5,000 €. However, this value results from a wide range of sponsorship income, ranging from 100 € to 100,000 €. The positive effect on the revenue side of golf clubs thus clearly shows the relevance of sponsorship. As of 2014, however, only 5 % of the clubs surveyed exploit the potential of this attractive source of financing through targeted, strategic sponsorship acquisition. However, golf courses that have a targeted strategy have approx. 70 % more sponsoring partners and thus also higher funding. The professionalisation of sponsorship acquisition therefore holds a very great opportunity. It is therefore advisable for golf club operators or managers to focus on building up a targeted marketing concept and to appoint sponsorship officers.
Advantages of golf sponsoring for companies
Of course, there are advantages not only for golf facilities and clubs, but also for the sponsors. The most frequently used consideration of sponsoring partners with a commercial objective is the use of a provided advertising space. Due to the high acceptance values for the topic of sponsorship, the conditions for sponsors are very positive. Furthermore, active golfers prove to be a very financially strong target group with high brand awareness. Beyond club members, however, tournament participants, guest players as well as teams and teams of the golf course are also specifically addressed.
In addition to the presence of the sponsor, on various advertising spaces, another sponsoring benefit is the sales promotion. Through increased brand awareness and the tapping of new target groups, customer acquisition can be realised.
A positive image transfer can be achieved especially through the targeted promotion of a team of the respective club or golf event. Through the emotional link with the successful sponsored youth team or the successful sponsored golf event, the attitude towards the sponsor brand is also positively influenced and a deeper relationship is established.
Popular possibilities of sponsoring in golf:
- Placement of logos on apparel (golf caps, jerseys etc.) of the sponsored team (players, coaches, helpers)
- Equipping the team with sportswear and golf caps
- Equipping the team with accessories
- Sponsoring a tournament
- Sponsoring tournament prizes
- Advertising on tee boards
- Performing PR activities with the team or individual athletes
Sponsorship with safetee
Golf is gradually losing its dusty image and is gaining popularity, especially among younger generations. But even in this age group, golfers stand out as particularly health and safety conscious. Another possibility for sponsoring, especially in the area of team and club sponsoring, is therefore the equipping with safetee golf caps. The protective protector in the golf cap offers children and young people, for example, head protection from missed balls or swinging club heads during training. Placing sponsors or golf club logos on the golf cap provides an attractive advertising space on a safety product. This not only enhances the image, but actually makes golf a little safer. This is a win-win-win situation for golf courses, members and sponsors alike.
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