Create a checklist
There’s a lot that goes into promoting your golf outing, so we’ve created a guide to help you achieve your desired outcomes from the event! Think of it as your checklist for success.
Who can benefit from a golf outing?
A golf outing is a great and time-proven nonprofit fundraiser, while a corporate golf outing is a great vehicle for raising money for charity.
On a side note: If you can’t afford to sponsor a golf outing, consider sponsoring a golf outing. You’ll get a smaller banner and your logo will be smaller on printed materials, but it’s a good way to get in the game and raise brand awareness.
Reasons to organize a golf tournament:
- Client entertainment
- Public relations
The importance of effectively promoting your golf outing to achieve your events’ goals cannot be overstated. A lot of planning goes into it, so you want sponsors to get involved and people to show up!
A golf outing also provides an opportunity to advertise to a demographic with a disposable income. This can be a great way to secure future donations for your charity or gain customers for your business.
Your company or organization’s name will appear on programs, banners, and signs. If there’s an awards ceremony, your name will be mentioned. TV and newspaper journalists covering the event present another opportunity for recognition and brand-building.
Identify your goals
A golf outing is a great way to drum up publicity and raise funds; but how do you get the ball rolling?
First, develop a clear focus and devise a specific plan to execute your vision. Define your purpose and put it in writing. This way questions and intensions can be resolved immediately and the committee is on the same page before the execution of the event starts.
Set a specific goal for how much money you want to raise. Be sure that the goal can realistically be reached or surpassed, but you should also not be afraid to challenge your team to reach a “stretch” goal. Determine and define how the money that is raised will be used. Donors want to know where their money is going and that it will be spent efficiently.
If this is your first time planning a golf outing, consider making it a smaller affair and growing it each year so you can maintain a reputation of putting on a high-quality event. It’s always wise to list all of your successes and failures for each event so that you can learn from them and build on those for each subsequent event.
Devise a timeline
Make sure to allot yourself enough time to plan and promote your golf outing. A timeline helps you stay ahead of the game. An event calendar that lists what needs to be done and who is responsible is a helpful tool to keep you on track.
Reasons to plan ahead:
- More pledges
- More golfers
- More corporate sponsorships
- More prize donations
- More publicity in paid and earned media
- Golf course facilities usually book events 8-12 months in advance
- Possibly better rates for the golf course (also inquire about group rates or discounts for charity events)
- And more!
Plan your marketing strategy for players and sponsors.
- Set up a committee and sub-committees
- Schedule committee meeting dates
- Identify financial goals
- Determine sponsor prices
- Determine player price
- Organize volunteers to handle spotting, beverage carts, registration, silent auctions, etc.
- Devise a way to register applicants (preferably online)
- Set up a website, or at the least, an event page on Facebook
- Update the golf facility about the number of golfers as it changes
Setting up a committee
The committee’s role is to help you organize and execute the event. Putting together a committee is a wise move because you have more people helping and a variety of skills to tap into. Some committee members might have planning experience and can share what they know from past failures and successes.
Locating committee members
Consider these ideas for finding prospective candidates. Make sure to put together a diverse group.
- Business people with contacts outside your organization’s network (leading to more sponsorships)
- Your board members
- Your supporters
- People suggested by your board members and supporters
- Individuals with specific talents needed to organize the event
If you are planning a large or complex event, the committee can be split into sub-committees to plan out the specific details needed to make the event a success.
Also consider consulting golfers for ideas.
Committee assignments include:
- Money and finances
- Scouting to locate a site to hold the golf tournament
- Marketing to players and sponsors
- Planning event activities and social functions
- Food and beverages
- Auction items and other prizes
- Logistics (including parking or transportation directions)
- Additional aspects of the event, such as selecting a good date for the event
Choose committee members who are passionate about the event and committed. Serving on the planning committee can be a lot of work, so you want people who will be dedicated.
Setting a fundraising goal
The majority of the revenue will likely come from sponsors. Reasons sponsors agree to participate include:
- The sponsor believes in your cause.
- The sponsor wants to maintain or establish a relationship with you or a committee member(s) or player(s) who are current or potential clients.
Decide how many players you would like to recruit The U.S. average is 120 players, but most golf courses accommodate 144 players.
Charge a reasonable entry fee. The amount should cover the cost of the golf course and a player welcome gift or goody bag. A rule of thumb is to multiply the total cost by 1.25 to set the price.
While this isn’t fundraising per se, it could save you money: Select a weekday for the golf outing because this is when courses and large blocks of time are easier to reserve. You might get even better rates by dropping by and talking to staff or the manager in person.
Make the day about having a good experience so that people tell their friends and come back next year.
Ways to raise money:
- Sponsors’ cost to advertise on signs and banners
- Advertising space in the event program
- Players’ registration fee
- Mulligans (an extra shot or a redo that can be used at anytime throughout a round)
- Contests at the event
- Raffle tickets
- Live auction
- Silent auction
- Door prizes
- Gift bags for sale
- Dinner before or after the event
Advertising to sponsors and players
Marketing options include:
- Ads in the sports section of the local paper
- Local media coverage from newspapers and television stations
- Multiple press releases
- Spokesperson to respond to media and the general public’s questions
- Email blasts
- Social media
- Organization or company website
Your web presence
Your website should include:
- The mission statement for the event
- Information about your organization
- Description of event activities including contests, auctions, and food
- Event details including date, time, cost, and location
- Information on the golf course
- Online registration that accepts credit cards
- The sponsors’ logos
- A link to share information with a friend via e-mail or social media
Signs and banners will guide your guests, making it a frustration-free experience navigating the set-up; and it will make your sponsors happy to see their names and logos displayed throughout the event space.
Ideas for signage include:
- Welcome banner
- Thank you banners
- Charity facts
- Sponsor board
- Clubhouse entrance
- Golf cart signs
- Indicating the first tee
- Reminders for fans to remain quiet during play
- Contest and hole sponsor signs
- Contest announcements
- Post-tournament awards ceremony
- And more!
Eye on the prize
Consider what promotional items and prizes you’d like to offer or distribute. Make sure to have gift bags for players. Prizes are a great way to add to a festive atmosphere and make people feel connected to the event and the organizations sponsoring it.
Items to consider for a golf outing:
- Golf towels
- Key chains
- Logo apparel
- Tote bags
- And more!
Ways to win golf prizes
You’ll gain more golfers with cool prizes. Consider some swag for:
- Longest drive
- Closest to the hole
- Hole- in-one
- Lowest actual score
- Best adjusted score
- Lowest team score
Ask sponsors to donate golf-related items as well.
Establish a new tradition
Follow up with sponsors, participants, and committee members after the event. Personally let them know how much money was raised.
Contact T.R. McTaggart!
T.R. McTaggart provides promotional items and prizes that will be perfect for your golf outing. Our expertise in providing the right items to fit the occasion goes back half a century!
Contact us for all of your promotional item and sports apparel needs. We are happy to brainstorm with you and discuss promotional ideas to make your golf outing a success!
Call us at (800) 433-0983.
Visit us online at: https://trmctaggart.com/events-and-fundraising/
We look forward to working with you!