Golf has long been associated with premium audiences and whilst the sport has become more accessible to a wider demographic of people watching and playing golf over recent years,
its audience remains dominated by the high income bracket – a trend witnessed globally.
Across four premium audience criteria, including ‘Income’, ‘Education’ and ‘Chief Income Earner status’, golf over-indexes in all areas against 11 other major global sports. This demonstrating the
premium audience that golf commands and in turn, this audience type is what attracts the more premium and luxury brands we see engaging with golf sponsorship today.
For brands, this information is of course very valuable. Understanding the profile of the audience of any sports event is the first stage in deciding whether sponsorship is an appropriate fit for the brand. It means that brands are not only able to quantify the size of the audience but are able to also qualify the type of person that they communicate with through sponsorship activity. The investment into golf by the likes of Rolex, Omega, BMW, Audi, HSBC, UBS, Ralph Lauren and Dunhill are all good examples of this.
The Masters has built its own brand which sponsors want to be associated with it. It has cleverly used the tradition, heritage and iconic status of Augusta National alongside the exclusive nature of the event and a stellar playing field of greats past and present to attract the premium audience and as such, the premium brands. The unique proposition is provides its sponsors is exclusivity.
This year’s sponsors which include Mercedes-Benz, AT&T and IBM as global sponsors and UPS and Rolex as international partners demonstrate just that. Whilst ‘Business to Business’ might play a significant role too, the audience profile of golf coupled with the exclusivity of The Masters means that this event is a prime vehicle for the premium brands year in, year out.