Not all PGA tournament action happens on the course.

Sometimes the best moments of the year of the biggest golf tournaments happen on your favorite social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, and Youtube.

Social media allows golf tournaments to control the online narrative – sharing scores, highlights, big moments, and behind-the-scenes looks into life as a professional golfer, caddy, or spouse. And for that reason, golf tournaments are often pros at sharing social media content that engages and inspires

Which is why today we’ll break down 3 golf tournaments using social media to make an impact and how we as comms pros can hit a hole-in-one of our own.

1. The Masters

One of the most renowned sports events of the year, The Masters draws in millions of viewers each year. Even casual sports fans and golfers probably recognize the Green Jacket!

But The Masters was not an overnight success. It took years and years of careful promotion, marketing, positioning, and thousands of people along the way to make it possible. To this day, marketing for The Masters is a year-round event. 

To creatively promote the tournament year-round (while also turning a small profit), The Masters’ social team uses the hashtag #mastersmerch to sell products directly to their followers on Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, and Facebook. To date, the hashtag has been used more than 5,000 times across social media with fans gladly sharing their recently purchased merch! Talk about social proof

Key Takeaway: If you’re using social media to promote an event that only happens once or twice a year, you’ll need a way to keep audiences engaged. Selling merchandise on social media, hosting contests and giveaways, creating niche groups, and posting top memorable moments from the event for people to relive is critical for your ongoing success.

2. Waste Management Phoenix Open

The Waste Managment Phoenix Open, officially dubbed “The Greatest Show on Grass” and known on social media as #ThePeoplesOpen, is one of the PGA’s most famous and longest-running events (started in 1932).

One of the reasons it is so incredibly popular, drawing in hundreds of thousands of visitors each year, is the real-time hype that the WMPO team builds on social media. Even if you’re not a golf fan, you can’t help but want to be in on the action!

On social media,#ThePeoplesOpen feature real-time stories of both golfer and fans. Their accounts are a great example of how social media can be a powerful tool in community building

Key Takeaway: Successfully promoting a golf tournament or event doesn’t end when the event starts. It’s important to have a “live” team ready to post real-time content and interact with fans as the event is happening. When you’re organizing an event, set aside time in your social media calendar for a solid mix of pre-planned and spontaneous content.

3. The Open Championship

The Open Championship often referred to as the “British Open,” first played in 1860, is the oldest of the four major professional golf championships.

But just because it’s one of the oldest golf tournaments on tour, doesn’t mean their marketing team can’t keep the social media content fresh. In fact, The Open Championship posts some of the most engaging PGA golf content seen on social media.

How do they do it? By using a variety of interactive and fun media formats to keep their audience on their toes.

Take this Tweet for example:

Many brands would have settled for a photo or a GIF. But The Open Championship team uses both a relevant hashtag (#MondayMotivation) along with video, which tends to outperform other types of media such as text, photos, and GIFs.

Key Takeaway: Look for opportunities to up your content game. Don’t settle for the “typical” posts such as a meme, GIF, or photo. Continually experiment with new types of content such as video to keep your fans interested and engaged on social media. 

3 Takeaways from Golf Tournaments on Social Media:

  1. If you’re using social media to promote your event that only happens once or twice per year, you’ll need a way to keep your audience engaged. Hosting contests, creating niche groups, and posting memorable moments is critical to your success.
  2. Successfully promoting a golf tournament or event doesn’t end when the event starts. It’s important to have a “live” team ready to post real-time content. Get your fans involved on social media as much as possible!
  3. Look for opportunities to up your content game. Continually experiment with new types of content such as video to keep your fans interested and engaged on social media. 

When you’re ready to build out a robust social program, download our ebook on the topic.

how to build a serious social media program