Twenty-two year-old Jordan Spieth is ‘hot’ right now. Currently ranked number two according to World Golf Ranking, he was the youngest player to win five times in a season since a 21-year-old accomplished the feat in 1929.
In doing so, it seems he’s attracting Millennials (ages 18 – 34) back to the game of golf.
According to Ty Votaw, chief marketing officer of the PGA Tour, there’s a “healthy” number of Millennials playing golf: The PGA Tour said that 6.5 million Millennials played 100 million rounds of golf in 2015. The age group made up 28 percent of all total golfers, mirroring its percentage in the population.
This is good news, and growth is on the horizon. In 2013, the National Golf Federation stated 200,000 Millennial golfers left the sport to pursue other hobbies and activities.
According to the National Golf Foundation, Millennials spend about $5 billion annually on golf. This includes green fees, which have jumped from 12.6 rounds per year in the 1990s to 14.7 in the 2010s.
Since last year, Votaw said the PGA Tour has seen a 43 percent increase in its website traffic from Millennials year over year, while its Twitter followers went up 39 percent in the same timeframe. By using a mix of showcasing Millennial golf stars and digital media marketing, Votaw believes Millennials are interested in the sport again.
GOLF 20/20 is focusing considerable effort on encouraging this age group to pick up the game. Recently, the “Millennial Task Force” was created to increase awareness, interest and participation in golf through industry education, non-endemic media outreach, digital campaigns and other exciting events.
How do you market to and engage Millennials at your club while balancing the interests of Gen X and Baby Boomers? What are your ideas to help clubs develop Millennials as loyal members and lifelong players for the continued success and vitality of the game?
Heather Arias de Cordoba is vice president of creative and associate editor with Boardroom magazine, the resource of choice for private club directors, presidents, owners and general managers (http://www.boardroommagazine.com). She can be reached at (949) 365-6966 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org