Planning is essential in any organization. You need to have clearly defined goals that are in line with the companies mission statement. One must set short, mid, and long term goals and objectives. Before you put your business plan into action you would need to identify your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats to your tour (SWOT analysis). How many golfers do you have in the area? What is the average salary in the area? How many golf courses? How many top of the line golf courses? What is the weather like? There are many questions that have to be answered through your SWOT analysis. After thorough planning you will find if it is feasible to run a successful golf tour in your area.
Once you find that there is a good opportunity for a golf tour you move on to organizing. All organizing should be done well before the tour starts. You must divide all the work to be done. In my case it was the founder/ owner and myself the tour director. Many tasks have to be done. Once you divide the work, one must prioritize.
- First and foremost you must get with the very best golf courses in your area and get the lowest price per golfer for your tournaments. You should always get free range and complimentary rounds of golf (great for giveaways and prizes). You have to distinguish yourself from other tours, so go for only 1st class courses within your budget.
- Next come up with a schedule. Decide how many tournaments you want to host and at which courses and make your tour schedule.
- Get all your prize and merchandise vendors in order. You should research and find the companies that can serve you the best, convenience and price. This includes all prizes and membership package.
- Must find sponsors. You have to seek out companies that are a good fit to a gold tour and sell advertisement for $ or trade (golf clubs, gift cards, etc).
- Point of contacts –Start a database of all contacts, vendors, golf courses, golf pros, media contacts, ect..
3. Market/ Promotions
Once you have properly planned and organized for the tour to go forward you have to get your name out there to attract members and sponsors.
- Establish Yearly Marketing Goals - financial projections and assessments, number of members, and number of sponsors.
- Your Target Market - Know who your target market is and what marketing tools will be best to get your name out (TV, radio, flyers, ect)
- Your Unique Factor - You have to set yourself apart from other competitors. Cheaper memberships? Better prizes? Better Courses? Discount green fees etc…
- Use of Internet and Media – Have to have a website for easy access of information and management of fees, tournament sign up, ect. The media can be help spread the word for free many times. Can send out press releases to all form of local media and a lot of the time the will put it out in the newspapers and so on, free advertisement, publicity!
- Sales – Membership is the key. Get people signed up on the tour and they will start to spread the word also. The more members you have it gives you much more marketing power. This will be ongoing throughout the year. You are always selling your tour. Whether its purely friendly for publicity or at a meeting with 50 people. You have to find a win/win situation to all the people you are selling to. For potential sponsors, if they don’t want to pay you money, get some type of trade. Have to have a simple sponsorship package to hand to potential clients and a complete presentation for bigger clients (title or presenting sponsors)
- Public Relations – You have to build a good reputation. It all starts with taking care of your members and sponsors. Cater to them, once you make the sell it should be the beginning of a long relationship. Constantly stay in contact and welcome feedback, make them feel important and like they have a say in the tour.
With all directing and evaluating you want to take the team approach. Work with each other and set goals together. Take all suggestions into consideration. Give co-workers the feeling that they have a ownership feeling, this will motivate them. Work closely with the golf courses, with the right kind of relationship they will do most of the work on tournament days. Must be fully organized going into the tournament day. Find volunteers to work the tournament (college students!)
The key is constantly assessing your goals and objectives. Are you on course or do you need to take another look at the direction you are going. Also if you have reach your goals, set new ones and always find new strategies to help your tour grow. You should have evaluation techniques in place to help motivate.
Today’s article is part of a Two-Week series on “How To Get Your Dream Golf Job”:
SERIES - Week One:
- “How To Become a Tour Pro” (Monday)
- “How To Own and Run a ProShop” (Tuesday)
- “How To Become Golf Club Designer” (Wednesday)
- “How To Become A Golf Sales Rep” (Thursday)
- “How To Become a Professional Long Driver” (Friday)