August 27th, 2020

Eddy Sidani

Content Marketing Specialist, SponsorPulse

PGA Golf - What's the best market?

Playing under a modified season due to the global pandemic, the PGA TOUR has found ways to organize safe competition during a time when many leagues and events have been criticized for poorly managing their priorities. Traditional major events such as the Open Championship and the Masters Tournament have been cancelled or rescheduled, and any events permitted will be played without fans in attendance. This atypical golf season presents challenges not only for the competing players, but also for the sponsors and brands associated with the events. Understanding the need for relevant data in unique/challenging time like this, we thought it beneficial to take a deeper look at PGA Golf and investigate how the property measures up in different global markets.

South Africa leads the way in almost every category

For those wondering which market presents the best opportunity for PGA Golf, look no further than the corresponding chart. While players like Gary Player, Bobby Locke, Ernie Els, and Retief Goosen (just to name a few) are some of the most notable South African golfers to date, there is no doubt that the sport has a major presence in the southern-most tip of the African continent. Although not the official national sport (credit to football, rugby, and cricket), golf most definitely has a prominent role in the South African sport landscape. Compared to other golf-friendly nations such as the USA, UK, and Canada; South Africa ranks among the top in 6 of 7 key sponsorship metrics.

PGA Golf - What's the best market?

Comparing reach-percentage among all nations

One key metric that we investigate at SponsorPulse is Engagement, defined as the "percentage of people who have engaged with the property at least once in the past 12 months." Engagement allows us to understand how far of a reach a property has, depicting how many people interact with the property annually.

Our data shows that of the four biggest markets for professional golf, PGA Golf has the greatest reach-percentage in South Africa (38%). While the USA has a similar reach-percentage (37%), the North American country has a much larger population. Also, 37% of Americans who engaged with PGA Golf interact with the property on a weekly basis, compared to the 18% of South Africans. This results in more frequent opportunities for brands to intercept and add value as a sponsor.

Another key behaviour metric is Momentum, which we define as the percentage of people who expect their interest in the property to increase over the next 12 months. South Africa ranks over 33% higher than the USA and the UK in this metric, indicating great potential for growth and interest for potential sponsors.

Not all fans are created equal

While PGA Golf has the greatest reach in the USA, those who engage with the sport property in South Africa have a much higher level of connection to the competition. SponsorPulse data shows that 35% of those South Africans who engage with PGA Golf are passionate about the property, compared to the 22%-25% of the other countries. South African fans also rank highest for those who are excited about what the property offers (16% to the 10%-13% of other countries). Together, these metrics demonstrate that while more Americans interact with the premier golf competition annually, South Africa is home to more highly-identified fans; a great opportunity for sponsors to connect with the South African demographic.

The Value of a potential partnership

At the end of the day, brands and potential sponsors want to know what their partnerships are worth and whether they are investing in the right properties and locations to achieve their desired goals. For those looking to connect with consumers through the sport of golf, South Africa presents one of the greatest opportunities. Our data shows that South Africans are most likely to be favorable of and consider purchasing from a brand that sponsors PGA Golf than any other country. This positions the country as one of the greatest geographic opportunities to sponsor the sport.

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