For nonprofit professionals, finding efficient and effective ways to raise funds is a constant challenge. When it comes to event fundraising, it’s about balancing return on investment, time demands, and positive outcomes.
There’s one option that, when planned and executed properly, can not only bring in a hefty amount of money, but accomplish other mission-critical functions, like raising awareness, broadening your organization’s donor base, and building long-term partnerships: a charity golf tournament.
Golf events have seen a resurgence in popularity and value, thanks to tools that make holding a lucrative golf tournament fundraiser easier than ever. Here’s why a golf tournament needs to be in your nonprofit’s fundraising portfolio.
1. People want to play golf.
When your fundraising event is centered around an activity that aligns with donor interests and preferences you’re more likely to attract engaged participants and donors. When it comes to a golf fundraiser, consider that golf’s overall reach is 119 million people, or more than one-third of the U.S. population (over the age of five) that played or interacted with golf in some way in 2022. Golf saw a huge surge in rounds played during 2020 as a result of COVID-19 related restrictions on gatherings, and while numbers have subsequently dipped, more people played golf in 2022 than they did before the pandemic.
What does this mean for your nonprofit? Golf’s popularity and staying power make it the perfect mechanism for a fundraiser. And when you combine something people love, like golf, with raising money for a good cause, you have a great recipe for a successful fundraising event. And the best part? You don’t have to be a golf expert or even a golfer to throw a great golf tournament.
2. Golfers make great potential donors.
The value of the golfer donor can’t be understated—these are generally folks with a high net worth, higher than average annual income, and a propensity to give. The golfer segment is one that every organization, no matter the type or size, wants represented in their donor database because:
- The average golfer has a net worth of nearly $770,000
- Golfers have an average household annual income of $125,000 (nearly twice the national average)
- One in three golfers are in top level management positions
- 90% of Fortune 500 CEOs are golfers
Golf tournament fundraisers give your team the chance to connect with this audience through an activity they enjoy over the course of four (or more) focused hours on the golf course. What’s more, the donor data from your tournament tells a broader story about who is supporting your organization through golf, at what levels, and at what times.
Properly collecting and managing donor data is a crucial step in engaging in onboarding this donor segment after the tournament. NXUnite suggests collecting data such as demographics, contact information, and employer details to create a comprehensive profile for each prospect. Though this is a lot of information to capture, it’s easier to do than you might think with the right software!
To level up your tournament’s overall digital presence, you’ll want a software solution that includes an event website with online registration so you can capture complete information right when a golfer commits to your event. It should also have an integrated payment processor so you can instantly collect donations and save payment information into your donors’ profiles. Ultimately, your golf tournament management tool should be able to generate reports to seamlessly sync data into your CRM to track and steward these donors.
3. Sponsors want to connect with your tournament’s audience.
Golf tournaments have a unique advantage over other fundraising events due to the audience they attract: an affluent, influential demographic that businesses want to reach. Your golf tournament puts your organization in a unique position to offer sponsors premium exposure to their ideal client or customer. Sponsorships are where golf tournaments can raise the most money, so leverage this advantage to boost your fundraiser’s sponsorship revenue.
Golf tournament sponsorships appeal to a number of different industries, due to businesses wanting to be associated with a worthy cause while gaining valuable exposure for their brand. Food and beverage, healthcare, sports and fitness, home services, and luxury brands are just a few of the potential industries that would be great fits for golf tournament sponsorships.
You can be flexible in the types of sponsorships you offer, beyond monetary contributions. For instance, you could approach a golf apparel company to donate pieces for player gifts or pin prizes and allow them to set up a pop-up shop at the event to sell their products. Reach out to relevant providers in your community and offer a custom sponsorship package based on their size, capacity to give, and business offerings.
4. You have options to supercharge fundraising.
Another pro for event planners—golf tournaments come with a ton of options that not only increase the event’s fundraising power, but a lot of these come with added fun and excitement. Organizations can mix and match these add-ons and extras to fit their style, priorities, and goals.
These recommendations from GolfStatus engage golf tournament participants while driving dollars for your cause:
Charity golf tournaments are most often held in a two or four-person scramble format, which makes them accessible to golfers of all skill levels. What’s more, this particular format means golfers reach out to their networks to fill a team. This means more people learn about your cause and your donor base snowballs with new potential supporters.
5. Golf tournament management software makes it simpler than ever.
A golf tournament fundraiser comes with a lot of moving parts and unique details to manage. Fortunately, event planners of all experience levels can (and should!) leverage golf tournament management software to streamline and simplify the event from start to finish. You’ll spend less time dealing with spreadsheets, checks, and receipts and more time stewarding donors, building relationships, and making your tournament a memorable experience.
Using a platform built for golf is key! The right software solution can help you:
- Handle golf-specific details like hole assignments, flighting, and handicaps
- Customize an attractive event website
- Register participants online with secure payment processing
- Track sponsorship packages
- Offer digital exposure to sponsors
- Display live leaderboards and mobile scoring
- Sync data with your CRM
- Collect and report robust donor and fundraising data
- Access knowledgeable live support
If you’re ready for a fun, memorable, and lucrative fundraising event, now’s the time to start planning a charity golf tournament! Leverage golf tournament management software to streamline and simplify the process, maximize fundraising, and build valuable donor relationships.