Tania Crouse Hardy
Tania Crouse Hardy, Event Specialist

Why is golf the official sport of business?

It’s a common saying that golf is the official sport of business, but why is that? There are a number of reasons:

  • People of any age can play – the goofier you look the better!
  • Different abilities can compete against one another – golf has unique equalizer not found in many other sports called a handicap (or in a tournament, the best ball rule). Lowest score wins!
  • Plenty of time to talk and build relationships – 18 holes takes four to five hours to play, with a small portion of time dedicated to actually hitting the ball.
  • Good test of character – are you calm under pressure and never lose your temper, can you think strategically, do you respect others and their property, and are you honest? Think about it: it’s an easy sport to blow your cool, cheat and disrespect the grounds you are playing on!

The people you will find on the golf course are the people who run things: successful entrepreneurs and business owners, middle managers, executives and CEOs, and most of all professionals. Playing with people like this helps you make powerful contacts that you may not have access to otherwise!

Business as a player at a golf tournament

You may be asking, what’s in it for me (other than a great day on the greens of course!)?

You are there not only to show off your stuff on the course, but also to show everyone you are open for business. Tell them who you are and about your company. Get to know your three teammates, the sponsors who have paid good money to present their companies to you, and all 24 teams (144 players) who have signed up to play that day and meet you!

Not everyone on course will know how to play or have proper golf etiquette; however, keep in mind that they just might be looking for a product you sell or offer a service you or a friend have been looking for, and are ready to make a deal with you.

Come prepared and be ready to make a connection with someone (or everyone); carry lots of business cards and enough pocket space to hold all the ones you collect. Be ready to play and most of all have fun!

Business as a sponsor at a golf tournament

How can you get the most for your sponsorship investment?

The more people you know, the more new customers you will find for your company. By attaching and promoting yourself and your business with an event, you expose your brand and its values to all participants involved, which helps them in turn remember who you are. It’s all about EXPOSURE!

It’s true that participation in a golf tournament as either a sponsor or a player is not the lowest cost option on the market. However, events such as golf tournaments tend to attract influential and top corporations, who are looking to do business and/or make connections.

To ensure return on your investment, be prepared;

  • Display your brand – have your logo and company name prominently displayed.
  • Bring a variety of materials to reference – business cards, brochures, take-a-way items with your brand on them. You never know where a conversation might lead, and  you don’t want to miss the opportunity to have everyone walk away with your name and information.
  • Make your activity, booth or presence on the greens stand out – entice people to stop and talk by offering food, refreshments, a great activity to engage them and remember you.
  • Smile, be approachable and talk with everyone – don’t spend the entire time sitting behind your table. Engage in conversation as you never know what connections you might make!
  • Take names and be prepared for a speedy follow up! – don’t expect to confirm or make a deal on the day, as these things take time! A quick connection afterwards is all it takes to show people you’re ready to do business.

Now that you’ve read our tips, why not take it to the greens? The Chamber Golf Challenge, our annual golf tournament, is taking place this year on Friday the 13th of June (so you can blame your game on bad luck!) at Glen Arbour Golf Course. Visit our website for more information on how to participate as a player or sponsor.

Tania Crouse Hardy is an Event Specialist with the Halifax Chamber of Commerce. She can be reached at (902) 481-1226 or tania@halifaxchamber.com . Visit the Calendar of Events for information on all of the Chamber’s upcoming events.