Your First Golf Tournament: What You Should Focus On

Golf Course

A golf tournament is a great way to raise money for your charity or cause but…It is a lot of work if you want to do it correctly and successfully.  There are many challenges that you will face such as attracting players, selling sponsorships and logistical issues.


The main way to raise money when holding a charity golf tournament is going to come from acquiring sponsors within the event, this success of this will usually make or break the event.  A tournament will need to create sponsorships that can sold to companies, businesses or individuals that wish to support the cause or charity.  A company or business could also be looking for recognition or advertising at the event as the golfers may be the demographic that they are targeting for their products or services. When creating sponsorships, there are usually different monetary levels that correlate with the number of perks that come with the level.  As an example, if an event was trying to secure a Title Sponsor, the ask may be anywhere from $10,000 to $20,000.  For this level they may get top billing in the event which would include large signage at registration, on the course and in the function room during dinner.  Usually there are also two to three foursomes of golfers in the tournament included.  The Title Sponsor will usually use these foursomes to invite clients or vendors to play and even conduct business on the golf course.  The rule of thumb is the more money you are asking for, the more that you should try to give that sponsor.  Many time’s there are things that you can include that have little or no cost to them, but still are a perk.  An example of such would be a mulligan.  A mulligan is basically a do overshot in golf.  A tournament could provide the sponsor with four or eight mulligans as part of their sponsorship and the cost on that perk to the tournament is zero. 

Another great sponsorship that many tournaments utilize is a hole in one insurance sponsor. Hole in one insurance or prize indemnification is insurance for a promotion or contest in which the participants are offered the chance to win valuable prizes as the result of making a hole in one a designated hole at a charity golf tournament. Instead of the tournament or charity rewarding or paying for prize, the tournament pays a premium to a promotions company, which then reimburses the insured should a hole in one be made on the designated prize hole. Once a tournament purchases hole in one insurance, the signage can then be customized with the sponsors name or logo.  That signage gets placed on the course during the day to market the prize as well as the sponsor.  Many events can secure anywhere from $500 to $5,000 for this sponsorship.

Attracting Golfers

Attracting golfers for an established golf event is hard enough, when you are a startup, it is even more difficult.  With a full tournament field being 144 golfers, most start up events set a goal of somewhere between eighty to one hundred golfers. The best way and quickest way to get to this goal is by establishing a golf committee that can assist in recruiting.  The tournament director is the boss, but I would recommend having at least seven to ten committee members in the first few years as you can assign different tasks to each person to make it easier for the tournament director. By having seven to ten committee members, you can now assign each member to be responsible for recruiting two foursomes each. Many times, one golfer that you contact may even decide to bring his own teamBy using these threads, you will be surprised how fast your player roster can fill up.

Golf Course

Selecting a golf course is a crucial piece of determining the success of your golf tournament.  There are factors that you will need to evaluate such as whether it be held at a public or private course, what the costs of the venue are, the proximity of the golf course to your base of golfers and the draw factor of the course. In most cases, selecting a private club that most golfers cannot have access to is a good way to ensure that golfers will sign up to play in your tournament.  Make sure that you meet with the golf course so that you can confirm what their staff will provide you as far as services during pre-tournament planning as well as tournament day.

Tournament Day

When the big day finally comes, hopefully you have planned accordingly and have not forgotten anything.  If you need a tournament checklist to help in the planning, make sure you visit a previous blog in which we published a detailed guide (

Remember that although your goal is to raise money for your cause or charity, you still need to show the golfers a good time and provide value so you can ensure that they come back next year and support your tournament.


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