Red-Hot Memorial Action -or- Who Will Barry Punch Next?

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Re: Why do we have to pay to watch the Memorial coverage?

Postby Chuck Kennedy » Fri Jan 22, 2010 12:15 pm

If you think I'm defending the plans, you are mistaken. But I understand and can hopefully try to explain why they are being attempted. I've been one of several nagging that until we start seeing spectators the concept of pros in our sport is premature. However, the 3000 "pros" in the PDGA for many years have indicated thru surveys they wanted the PDGA to do more marketing to try and get sponsorship and do things like the live coverage to help increase sponsorship. Frankly, I'm glad I don't have that task even though my MBA was in marketing. I don't know what we have to sell to sponsors as a sound business decision for them without many spectators.

The National Tour was founded to showcase the sport's top pros and be underwritten with a large national sponsor. The Marketing Director position was mostly justified to support the NT efforts. The PDGA has attempted to get a big or even several smaller sponsors for the NT over several years with minimal success. Stork, who has been involved with big sponsorship efforts since the 70s for disc sports doesn't believe anyone could have done any better than Duesler considering the lack of business proposition for potential sponsors. But you keep knocking on doors each year for that magic moment when someone says yes. The NT series still continues to bounce along with a more typical format that includes ams and all pro divisions different from what was originally intended with only Open Men and Women playing.

SkaBob, it's much easier to get larger sponsorship locally than it is to get them for a national scale. Many places like Target have budgets for "throwaway" sponsorship at the local level so they look like good citizens in the communities. That's why some of the NTs can do okay with decent added cash for purses. But not every local team has the skills or desires to do the efforts needed to get the larger local sponsors.
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Re: Why do we have to pay to watch the Memorial coverage?

Postby veganray » Fri Jan 22, 2010 12:19 pm

Man, I wish I had a job like that. No expectations from my boss + no results from me + major public gaffes (and that's being generous) = continued employment. Where does one sign up? :lol:
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Re: Why do we have to pay to watch the Memorial coverage?

Postby Chuck Kennedy » Fri Jan 22, 2010 12:27 pm

Maybe Virginia state government?
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Re: Why do we have to pay to watch the Memorial coverage?

Postby Frank Delicious » Fri Jan 22, 2010 12:31 pm

veganray wrote:Man, I wish I had a job like that. No expectations from my boss + no results from me + major public gaffes (and that's being generous) = continued employment. Where does one sign up? :lol:


Get a job working in a schools system in the central office. They don't do anything there.
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Re: Why do we have to pay to watch the Memorial coverage?

Postby Timko » Fri Jan 22, 2010 12:37 pm

Chuck Kennedy wrote:The Marketing Director position was mostly justified to support the NT efforts. The PDGA has attempted to get a big or even several smaller sponsors for the NT over several years with minimal success.

Many places like Target have budgets for "throwaway" sponsorship at the local level so they look like good citizens in the communities. That's why some of the NTs can do okay with decent added cash for purses.


So if the Marketing Director position was created to help the NT events, but the local TDs actually running the events are the ones who get sponsorships, what does the Marketing Director do exactly?
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Re: Why do we have to pay to watch the Memorial coverage?

Postby SkaBob » Fri Jan 22, 2010 12:39 pm

Has the PDGA considered approaching retailers of outdoor goods rather than just manufacturers?

I'd imagine REI, Backcountry.com, Moosejaw and others like them would appreciate the exposure and quantity of different types of gear that would get sold if say...the PDGA got a special discount code to include in the Nats/Worlds players packs.

I know none of those stores sell a very wide variety of golf discs, but they sell the shoes, clothing, stools and other gear that disc golfers use all over the country...
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Re: Why do we have to pay to watch the Memorial coverage?

Postby Frank Delicious » Fri Jan 22, 2010 12:43 pm

SkaBob wrote:Has the PDGA considered approaching retailers of outdoor goods rather than just manufacturers?

I'd imagine REI, Backcountry.com, Moosejaw and others like them would appreciate the exposure and quantity of different types of gear that would get sold if say...the PDGA got a special discount code to include in the Nats/Worlds players packs.

I know none of those stores sell a very wide variety of golf discs, but they sell the shoes, clothing, stools and other gear that disc golfers use all over the country...


The local REI started out interested in pairing with our local club to offer a small discount to club members but it got shot down by the GM of the regional stores.
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Re: Why do we have to pay to watch the Memorial coverage?

Postby Timko » Fri Jan 22, 2010 12:45 pm

Frank Delicious wrote:
SkaBob wrote:Has the PDGA considered approaching retailers of outdoor goods rather than just manufacturers?

I'd imagine REI, Backcountry.com, Moosejaw and others like them would appreciate the exposure and quantity of different types of gear that would get sold if say...the PDGA got a special discount code to include in the Nats/Worlds players packs.

I know none of those stores sell a very wide variety of golf discs, but they sell the shoes, clothing, stools and other gear that disc golfers use all over the country...


The local REI started out interested in pairing with our local club to offer a small discount to club members but it got shot down by the GM of the regional stores.


That's EXACTLY the thing the marketing director of the PDGA needs to do. You send suits to talk to execs and managers, not local guys.
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Re: Why do we have to pay to watch the Memorial coverage?

Postby SkaBob » Fri Jan 22, 2010 12:50 pm

I'd imagine if the PDGA got in touch and asked for say, a 5% discount code for NTs and a 10% discount code for Nats and Worlds, the companies would be willing to play ball. It's not a super huge discount, but on things like shoes where you're spending $100+ and winter jackets where you're spending around $200 for the good ones, 5-10% could put the price below other retailers, and earn them the business over their competitors.

I know Backcountry always seemed open minded to that kind of thing when I was working on their website. They gave the company I worked for a code for 10 or 15% off that we all got to use.
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Re: Why do we have to pay to watch the Memorial coverage?

Postby Working Stiff » Sat Jan 23, 2010 9:17 am

Timko wrote:
ChUcK wrote:Live Coverage of the 2010 Memorial, brought to you by Keen Footwear.

Live Coverage of the 2010 Memorial, brought to you by Target.

Live Coverage of the 2010 Memorial, brought to you by Home Depot.

Live Coverage of the 2010 Memorial, brought to you by Insert Random Cash Cow Here.

Get to work, marketing director.


Let's leave Keen out of the discussion right now, since they've donated product to be given away.

Why should Target or Home Depot sponsor this?
The question hung out there unanswered. I'll take a stab at it.

There is no reason for Target or Home Depot to sponsor disc golf events at the national level. There simply are not enough of us for it to make marketing sense. NT's get a couple hundred participants and a handful of spectators, so the on-site impact is negligible. Seriously, you could throw a couple hundred dollars at a local concert in the park series and reach thousands of people, so why would you throw thousands of dollars at a disc golf tournament to reach hundreds of people?

If there was later coverage posted on the Internet there would be some impact there, but you are talking about hits in the thousands spread out all over demographically and geographically. It is really a scatter-shot marketing idea, and not a very effective one.

Something that is great about disc golf is the wide demographic appeal of the sport. Young people, old people, blue collar, white collar...disc golf draws in people who otherwise have very little in common. This hurts us from a marketing standpoint. People say "skateboarding" and "snowboarding" all the time as sports we should emulate in our marketing. Both of those were specifically targeted at a late Teen-early 20's demographic. Those sports boomed right about the time marketers figured out that spoiled kids that age had pockets full of cash from their parents and were buying, buying, buying. There was a very small demographic involved in those sports, so it was easy to market to them. We are much harder to pin down.

The facts remain that disc golfers are a group that is small in overall numbers and not very homogeneous. The only reason for a company like Target or Home Depot to get involved in disc golf would be if someone high up in one of those companies got bit by the disc golf bug and decided to allocate marketing funds based less on sound marketing principals and more on his personal special interests. Chances are a guy like that would not last long and the money rug would get pulled out from under us after a short period of time anyway.

I understand that top players want to be compensated for their talents, and those players put a lot of pressure on the PDGA to do things like prop up an NT and try live coverage. So try they will. I think we have a long way to go before we have the basic numbers in place to make something like this work, but I'm not the one sitting in the PDGA office getting calls complaining that I'm not doing anything. This at least gives those people something to point at and say "Hey, we tried."

I've been around disc golf a long time. I've seen it grow a lot over the years. There are a lot of things for us to be happy about with the growth of the sport. We are still miles and miles away from Prime Time. Back in the 90's we used to joke that a "Pro" disc golf tour will work right after a disc golfer wins the Powerball lottery. Fifteen or so years later that is still the most realistic option IMO. I'm no big fan of Duesler, but I don't envy a man whose best shot at meeting his job goals is dependent on somebody winning the lottery.
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Re: Why do we have to pay to watch the Memorial coverage?

Postby mark12b » Sat Jan 23, 2010 11:30 am

Working Stiff wrote:There is no reason for Target or Home Depot to sponsor disc golf events at the national level. There simply are not enough of us for it to make marketing sense. NT's get a couple hundred participants and a handful of spectators, so the on-site impact is negligible. Seriously, you could throw a couple hundred dollars at a local concert in the park series and reach thousands of people, so why would you throw thousands of dollars at a disc golf tournament to reach hundreds of people?


agreed, spending a few hundred bucks on a banner that will be up all tourney is one thing, but an ad-buy for a multi-day live event feed is completely different. those ads are expensive to produce and expensive to place, with no hope whatsoever of recouping the investment let alone making it back in profit. we have to remember that advertisers don't want to pay more than a few bucks per thousand viewers.

plus, as a potential viewer, i'm not sure i would actually watch the coverage if it was stuffed with $40k worth of ads.

it's funny, some people are arguing that volunteers could produce this for free, and others are complaining that the last one wasn't good enough (i.e. should have had a bigger budget). i think this next broadcast *must* be better than the last, which is why they should *not* try to do it cheaply.

it's an interesting idea having the PDGA pay for it so we members could watch for free... of course the PDGA gets their money from us, the members, anyway, so really we pay either way. but if, say, membership dues went up $5/year/person, then that could pay for covering what, one or two events per year? i wonder what effect this would have on membership..
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Re: Why do we have to pay to watch the Memorial coverage?

Postby pg043 » Sat Jan 23, 2010 7:50 pm

I'm guessing Duesler's salary would cover this event.
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Re: Why do we have to pay to watch the Memorial coverage?

Postby JR » Sun Jan 24, 2010 7:35 am

Tali Open commentary in English is a few tryouts short of commencing. I've got new hardware waiting to be tested. Once I'm satisfied with results I'm ready. And we'll get the ball rolling from there. Wait a while and the finished product commences production. Then you can compare if 20 or 30K videos cut it quality wise.
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Re: Why do we have to pay to watch the Memorial coverage?

Postby pg043 » Sun Jan 24, 2010 10:24 am

Coverage of the Tali Open and European Open is some of the best I've seen. I'd say aside from Billy Crump's crew and Johnny B, no one is filming disc golf as well as you guys.

I was surprised to read earlier in this thread that the Worlds DVDs are the only ones even breaking even. Does Clash lose money on its productions? IMO the Worlds DVDs are the worst disc golf DVDs being produced at the moment. I can rewatch the Clash videos and the USDGC videos over and over, but I CAN NOT bring myself to ever put a Worlds DVD in after I have watched it the first time. Not without muting the sound at least.
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Re: Why do we have to pay to watch the Memorial coverage?

Postby Timko » Tue Jan 26, 2010 10:52 am

I got my response from Deusler:

Hello, my name is Chris Timko. I'm a member of the moderator community at the DiscGolfReview forums. Some of my members had asked for some clarification about the broadcast; perhaps you can provide some insight. During the free broadcast of the USDGC, you were only able to provide coverage on a few holes due to the limitations of equipment, as well as the physical limitation of the lake. I see that there will be a minimum of 4 hours of coverage per day. Will this include all of the holes, or only a subset? Will both courses be broadcast? During the final round, will the lead card be followed for the entire round?

Thanks for taking the time to answer these questions. I appreciate everything you're doing to help broadcast disc golf.

-chris


Chris,

While I cannot promise all 18 holes will be covered during our three days at Fountain Hills, I can tell you that our coverage will be expanded. This is because we are implementing the use of wireless cameras, so we can follow lead groups and cover more holes.

It takes approximately three days to set up the broadcast infrastructure, so we will only be showing LIVE play from Fountain Hills. Pros on Wednesday and Friday; Ams on Thursday.

We will however, be at Vista del Camino covering the finals of the Men's and Women's Open divisions on Saturday. This will be packaged into a 30 minute program that will be available Monday, March 8th ONLY to subscribers of the show.

I hope this clears up some of your questions and look forward to seeing you online.

If there is anything you can do to help promote registration, I would be very grateful. This is a big moment in our sport, as we are now measuring our disc golf community's willingness to pay a modest price to watch live. Keen, Columbia, Kavu, and many other outside companies are waiting to see what our response will be, so that they can determine their future relationships with the sport.

Finally, I'd be glad to send you the Press Release for the broadcast, if you think you can use it.

Thanks again!
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