Dear Golf Industry Professional:
The season is now officially "open" for the vast majority of the country as the golf clubs emerge from the closet for those of us in all but the furthest northern reaches of the US. Early indicators are cautiously optimistic for a flat-to-slightly-upward trajectory this year but, as they say, there's still a lot of golf to be played.
In a recent interview I was asked to characterize the current industry environment which I described as "reorganization and consolidation" (lots of activity but little evident forward movement). This month's headline story by Editor-in-Chief Jim Dunlap describes two recent events at ClubCorp which highlight the current industry see-saw pattern with the company withdrawing its sale efforts and the announcement of CEO Eric Affeldt's pending retirement. That particular picture will likely become clearly once his successor is named and one can divine whether they've brought in an operator or a financier to take the company forward in '17. For more on this, click here:
In addition, the May issue covers the following topics in our pursuit of providing monthly insights and entertainment for our readers:
- Publisher Jim Koppenhaver asks the question of whether TopGolf will "save golf." With the continued buzz around its growth and how its appeal to Millennials is the "fix" for that particular industry challenge, everyone from the WGF to the NGF (and any other industry associations that ends in "F" we guess) is making the growth argument that engagement through TopGolf = increased golf relevance. The only challenge with this position is that, even as TopGolf grows, golf participation declines or flattens. Read more to understand why engagement doesn't necessarily beget involvement and the math behind the number of new players that TopGolf should be bringing to the game annually.
- Contributing Editor Stuart Lindsay brings to light a very interesting topic on which he's been doing considerable research in his piece titled: Mobile Apps and MAC (Media Access Control) Addresses, Is the Golf Industry Paying Attention? The basic fact is that, as more consumers move from PC to mobile interactions with the web and service providers, more information on their identity and behavior can be gleaned and used to deliver more personalized services. This can yield more effective marketing as well as better align with the Millennials' expectations in their activities of choice and where they spend their money.
- Plus the monthly Industry Scorecard (the only integrated scorecard of multi-source performance indicators) including weather impact for the April month (back to positive territory, +8%) and Year-to-Date (also positive, up 5%), March Utilization (also positive but result of rounds decline less than weather decline), the February equipment sales figures (still in the green), as well as San Francisco CA as this month’s Market Focus which registers as the 4th healthiest of the Top 25 US Golf Markets in our annual ranking.
We recognize and thank our continuing sponsors; KemperSports, Troon Golf, Bayer CropScience and EZLinks Golf. We cordially invite additional industry stakeholders who want to increase their brand exposure and be associated monthly with intelligent discussion on key issues to join our merry little band through our most popular 12-month sponsorship program (offered at an improved value relative to our entry-level six month sponsorship rate). Twelve-month sponsors also receive all Pellucid industry-standard reports (State of the Industry, Outside the Ropes, Monthly Weather Impact Tracking (Nat'l, Reg'l, Markets), Top 25 US Golf Markets Scorecard and National Golf Consumer Franchise Health Scorecard). Sponsorship provides monthly exposure to approximately 30K industry leaders and followers and associates your brand with Pellucid’s effort to expand intelligent thinking on today's most challenging industry issues. For more "opportunistic" spenders, we might suggest one of our smaller-bite "Ad Partner" programs for those who may not be able to make a 6 or 12-month commitment (as short as 3 months are now available) or who may not need a half page or more exposure (quarter pages now available). If you're interested in knowing more about sponsorship opportunities or are interested in a preview of our ad partner options, contact Editor-in-Chief Jim Dunlap (760-212-3714, email@example.com).
If you know of associates who would benefit from the topics and insights covered in this issue, feel free to forward this email and encourage them to register on the Pellucid website (http://www.pellucidcorp.com/news/elist) to join the conversation, discussion and debate.
As always, you can review and order any of Pellucid's range of reports and services at www.pellucidcorp.com. We also want to bring to your attention Pellucid's recently- announced participation in the next generation golf course database, the Internet Golf Course Database (IGDB) with partners Apparation LLC, Never-Search and GolfCourseRanking.com. For more information on this comprehensive database, updated quarterly and refreshed completely every 12 months (all 15K+ US courses), contact firstname.lastname@example.org. From the numbers and details of how our industry's consumer base is changing at the national level to our individual facility-level services including weather impact (Cognilogic) and market analysis (Golf Local Market Analysis), we'll keep you one step ahead of the competition in this continuing challenging industry landscape.