Know Your Audience: Professional Golf
There were a ton of great things happening in professional golf this season. In addition to four first-time major winners, golf’s return to the Olympics went off with a bang.
Back in April we were able to watch one of the most grueling collapses in golf’s long history. Jordan Spieth took a considerable lead into his Sunday back nine at the Masters and was looking defend his 2015 Championship.
The long standing saying at Augusta is that the “Masters doesn’t begin until the back nine on Sunday,” and it could not have been more true. Jordan bogeyed the 10th and 11th holes and then made a quadruple bogey on the Par 3 12th. All of a sudden his five shot lead turned into a three shot deficit behind Great Britain’s Danny Willet.
After a valiant charge, Spieth finished the round one over par and with a second place finish in the tournament. Willet’s win was his major victory of his career.
At the US Open in June, we saw our second first-time winner. This one came at the hands of American Dustin Johnson. After several majors over the course of his career where he couldn’t close the door on the competition, Johnson cruised to victory at Oakmont Country Club. With a leaderboard full of perennial major contenders, Johnson was able to put aside many of the inconsistencies that have cost him over the years.
In July, Sweden’s Henrik Stenson claimed his first major at the Open Championship. The oldest event in golf was played at Royal Troon in Scotland and featured fierce playing conditions and competitors. American favorite Phil Mickelson chased down the Swede on Sunday, but he could not be overtaken. With rounds of -6 (Mickelson) and -8 (Stenson), fireworks were blasting as the two hit incredible shots and traded birdies until Stenson took care of business with back to back birdies to end the round and win the trophy.
To round out the year’s majors, American Jimmy Walker went wire-to-wire to claim victory at Baltusrol. World #1 Jason Day led a valiant charge on Sunday to challenge the eventual winner, but with a birdie and par to end the day, Walker was able to take the Wanamaker Trophy home.
Blasting down to Rio for the summer games, on a course that was custom-made for the Olympics, professional men and women took to the links chasing gold. After many withdrawals on the male side of the competition many were concerned about the quality of play that would be seen. Those doubts were quickly hushed over the weekend’ play when Great Britain’s Justin Rose took the podium after a duel with Henrik Stenson.
The 2016 golf landscape is certainly one to remember. The golf world is currently lacking a single, dominant power like Tiger Woods, but the viewing audience is one you want to engage with!
The largely male audience (72%) is typically married and in the 35-54 demographic. The key factors that set this group apart are their home ownership (76%) and their affluence as more than a third capture a household income of over $100K.
Golfers as a whole are very loyal. Be it to their favorite equipment manufacturers, home courses or playing partners. So as we roll into the new golf season, be a part of golf’s resurgence and capture some loyal fans along the way.
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