4 Ways to Raise More At Your Next Charity Golf Outing
Golf outings have been a fundraising favorite for decades, and with good reason. The game is welcoming to players of all levels, builds comradery without being overly competitive, and is ideally structured to offer additional fundraising opportunities beyond the entry fee.
Whether you’re considering launching your first charity golf outing, or you’re preparing for your 100th, you’ll want to be sure you’re taking advantage of every revenue-earning opportunity your outing can offer. The team at Renaissance in Haverhill, Mass. has been a favorite of charity outing planners in the Merrimack Valley and beyond for over 10 years, and they have some suggestions on how to make the most of your fundraiser:
1) GET CREATIVE
If you’ve ever played in a charity tournament before, you know you can raise a few extra dollars by holding “pay-to-play” side challenges during your tournament; hole-in-one prizes, closest-to-the-pin competitions; beat-the-pro challenges – the list goes on. While these old standbys work just fine, a little creativity can raise the bar – and the donation amounts – to a new level!
“With a bit of creativity, there are endless ways to spice up a hole-in-one or closest-to-the-pin contest,” says Rhett Bishop, Head Golf Pro at Renaissance. “For example, change your Hole-in-One challenge from a long drive to a 50-foot putt, or offer a rare bottle of bourbon as a prize for a Closest-to-the-Whiskey-Barrel competition.”
A few other fun ideas include:
Sell Mulligan Cards
Allow participants to purchase a certain number of mulligans per hole for a set price. The more intense the competition, the better the sales!
Offer a “Pro for Hire”
Station a golf pro at the longest and/or most difficult hole, and sell his skills by the swing. Common pricing ranges from $10 – $40.
Sell “Grenade Lobs”
For $5-$10 per “grenade,” participants can pick up their ball and throw it instead of using a club.
Create a “Contest Add-On”
Let participants purchase entry into a “package” of contests when they first register – hole-in-one, closest to the pin, longest drive, etc. – and make it less expensive than entering each individually. If the price is right, most participants will opt-in to this package!
2) FIND AN IN-KIND SPONSOR
Hosting guests with discretionary income? Local vendors may be happy to provide you with an in-kind donation just to get in front of your attendees. Can’t afford to hire that helicopter? Maybe there’s a private helicopter tour or transport service that would be willing to help. Not able to spring for hole-in-one insurance? Ask a luxury car dealership to donate their latest and greatest model as a prize in exchange for having the car on view or available for test drives at the event.
There are likely dozens of vendors who would love exposure to your audience – find creative, tasteful ways to incorporate them and make your event even more special.
3) OFFER MORE THAN GOLF
Sure, it’s a golf outing, but if you want to maximize your donations, it’s important to let non-golfing attendees in on the fun! You can sell tickets to scavenger hunts, raffles, wine tastings, and more.
Want to build some excitement prior to the event? Start an online silent auction a week or so prior to your outing offering experiences like vacations, nights on the town, hotel stays, and more. Then announce the winners the day of your event. This also gives spouses or invitees who can’t attend a way to contribute to your cause.
“Remember that the idea is to make the event more inclusive, not necessarily to exclude golf from these non-golf activities entirely,” says Lana Packard, Assistant General Manager at Renaissance. “In fact, your venue may be able to give you excellent pricing on items in their golf shop to include in your raffles. In our case, we’re part of a family of private clubs, so sometimes we can donate access to one of our sister private clubs on the Cape or in The Bahamas.”
4) CREATE THE RIGHT ENVIRONMENT WITH A SMALLER, HIGHER-END EVENT
Did you know that utilizing private clubs for a smaller, higher-end golf outing can raise just as much, if not more, money for your cause – with half of the logistical work? Guests will reach deeper into their pockets to play at a club they wouldn’t normally have access to, and the fun and joy that comes with playing at a high-end club are likely to result in much more generous guests.
“When the guests show up, they’re greeted by a well-trained, warm, and friendly staff, the carts are perfectly lined up, the water is cold, the coffee is hot, and the golf course is just picture -perfect,” says Paul Jordan, General Manager at Renaissance. “It’s what we do all year for our members, so we have it down to a science. And that kind of experience not only puts donors in the right frame of mind at the event itself – it sticks with them, and then they tell their friends about it. Nothing helps an event grow year after year than a happy guest sharing an extraordinary experience.”
START PLANNING YOUR NEXT CHARITY OUTING TODAY!
If you would like to hear more from our staff about how to craft a creative and exciting charity golf outing, or are interested in Renaissance’s introductory rates for new clients, contact Lana Packard at 978-241-6711, or fill out the form .