Hosting your own golf tournament is actually fairly easy and if done right, you can raise a significant amount of money. Here are some tips for maximizing your golf fundraising results.
Obviously, the bigger the crowd, the better you'll do with your tournament. Promote with quality posters at golf stores, your own offices, and other high-traffic, high-visibility locations. Use your newsletter and email lists as additional ways to get the word out. Distribute a press release about your golf fundraiser to all your local media outlets. Describe your most noteworthy news angle in the summary paragraph and then get into the who, what, when, where, why, and how aspects.
Most golf courses will give you a substantial discount for a large group, particularly if you're scheduled for a weekday when traffic is low. You can charge the regular price and do quite well. Or, you can pocket the discount, markup the regular greens fee by $10, and do even better.
Contact local businesses and ask them to sponsor a hole. To attract eighteen sponsors, make it affordable, say $100 or so. Show them a mockup of the signs that will be placed for each sponsor and your event program where you'll list all your sponsors.
For the biggest financial impact, approach large corporations and ask them to sponsor your event. Companies with headquarters or substantial operations in your area are your best bets. Price your corporate sponsorships at a reasonable level, say $1,000 for a smaller golf tournament, and you'll get a good response.
Put together a sponsorship request on your letterhead and be specific as to what's in it for the corporation, i.e. prominent signage at the event, corporate logo golf balls for all golfers, newspaper coverage, golfing slots for top executives, etc. Ask around within your group to see if anyone has personal contacts at the management level. Managers often have discretionary funds available for reasonable promotional expenditures.
Just like individuals get sponsors for Relay For Life walks, Multiple Sclerosis bike rides, and other types of event fundraisers, so should your players. Put together a sponsorship form and ask each player to raise at least $100 in pledges along with their greens fees. Silent auction Solicit items from local businesses and even offer to pay for some popular items that will attract serious bidding such as golf lessons from the club pro or a set of new irons.
On the day of your golf fundraiser, setup a couple of tables full of donated goods and services. Tape bidding sheets and descriptions of each item to the tables so that golfers can place bids one-handed. Make sure to get the bidding started on each item and encourage everyone to bid.
Do a last call for bids as everyone is gathering for the awards ceremony that wraps up your tournament, then announce the winners, collect the funds, and disperse the merchandise.
You can sell raffle tickets for quality prizes in conjunction with your event. They don't even have to be golf related, but it does help to have at least some prizes such as a new golf bag, free round, season pass to top course, etc. Price your tickets so that you raise at least twice as much as your prizes cost. If your prize costs total $5,000, then sell 1,000 tickets for $10 each. You can make even more if you get prizes donated.
To increase sales, sell tickets to the general public and not just to your group of supporters. You can even set up a sales table at high-traffic locations like shopping centers. obviously, follow all local regulations concerning raffle ticket sales.
Load up the back of a golf cart with ice and cold drinks, then drive the course and sell your golfers what they want. Cold beer and sodas are the best sellers, but don't forget to include snack foods like pretzels and chips.
Work with the club to offer a catered lunch to all your golfers or at least a boxed lunch of sandwich, chips, and a cookie. Depending on what you're offering, markup your costs by $2 to $4 per person and you'll do well. overcharging will actually cut into your total profits.
If done correctly, a golf tournament can raise a substantial amount of money. Leverage all these fundraising tips and you'll have a record-breaking golf fundraiser!