For a game so closely associated with leisure, golf sure is polarizing. Listen to your local sports-radio station long enough, and you'll inevitably hear a few (poorly articulated) "Are golfer's really athletes?" arguments. Turn on the Master's at a family gathering, and you'll elicit as many groans as you will debates on the nuances of Phil Mickelson's putting mechanics.
Even if you're into golf, there's little middle ground: Maybe you watch it for the 50-foot birdie putts that tiptoe just right along the break, or maybe you just hope to catch a club-throwing, divot-inducing meltdown. Maybe you're a fierce competitor working tirelessly to improve your 7 handicap, or maybe you just like having an excuse to wear white pants and drink outdoors in the middle of the day.
However you feel about golf, though, there's one thing everyone can agree on: The maybe-or-maybe-not-sport is teeming with promotional product sales opportunities. Want in on the action? Get in the game with the sales tips below.
While sports like soccer and basketball require little in the way of special equipment to play, golf is a bit trickier. You need clubs (drivers, irons, putters, wedges, etc.), a bag for your clubs, towels, a golfer's cap (preferably plaid), shoes, a bag for your shoes, and more. (OK, you don't need a golfer's cap, but they look totally cool.)
But what's the one item you need more than all of those? Golf balls. Lots of them. As if water hazards, woods and the occasional golf-ball-snatching-seagull weren't taxing enough on your supply, there's also regular wear-and-tear that necessitates frequent golf-ball replacement—according to the website Golf Ball Planet, an individual ball will typically be used for only 12 to 15 shots. In other words, golf balls will always be in demand. "Golf balls continue to represent the largest percentage of golf business and are a needed staple," said Kim Shaw, senior trade marketing manager for Norwood & BIC Graphic.
Pro Tips: Find the ball that best fits your client's needs. If your client is running a fundraiser tournament, for example, you may not need a Titleist Pro V1, a ball popular with professional golfers that has a number of fancy, expensive features. Golf balls are designed for different skill levels and come in a wide range of prices (Norwood's website lists 80 items in the golf balls category), so do your homework when choosing a ball.
Also, keep in mind that while golf balls have similar quality and available features across brands, established golf customers may still prefer one brand to others. "Many customers are very loyal to specific golf brands, similar to how we prefer certain brands of clothing," noted Shaw. "A brand is a golf vendor's greatest asset and [should be] protected highly by its marketing efforts."