Creative Contests, Games

Steve Hupe, the 2004 and 2006 Georgia PGA Section Merchandiser of the Year for Resort Facilities, as well as the 2000 Georgia PGA Section Merchandiser of the Year for Public Facilities, is the PGA director of golf at Promontory Club in Park City, Utah.

If your course hosts corporate outings, one of the more creative ways to increase revenue for the golf shop is to include a “Beat the Pro” contest on one of the par-3 holes. Players can wager their own money that they can hit their tee shot closer to the hole than a PGA Professional. Typically, the incentive is a chance to double or triple the wager in the form of a shop certificate if the player is successful. Even if the player fails, they are rewarded with a consolation prize such as a sleeve of balls, or even receiving their money back in the form of a gift certificate. More importantly, using a little creativity can also be a great incentive for players to participate in the contest. For example, Little Caesars Pizza held their international meeting at our course one year, and so we dressed up a golf professional in a white toga, sandals and a leaf headband. The attendees loved it and couldn’t wait to wager. Even in sandals, the professional won more than 85 percent of the time. A couple years later we hosted the National Homebuilders Association’s annual golf outing and dressed a professional in overalls, boots, a tool belt and a hard hat. In addition to the shop certificates, a nice byproduct of creating such a memorable experience for the group was that they rebooked the resort for their next year’s event before they even left.

The point is to be creative no matter what additional games you implement to create revenue. This just might be the creative twist that will set your event apart from the norm and create the best opportunity to generate additional shop sales or revenues. Between the two events described above, we managed to generate over $14,000 in additional certificate sales at a cost of only $2,000 for the times the professional was beat.