The TOUR Championship is one of Hope-Beckham’s most popular clients. It’s the top 30 golfers in the world competing in the final round for the coveted FedEx Cup. Over the past decade, Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, and Jordan Spieth have become household names thanks to their big wins at TOUR.
As a public relations professional, my job is to promote the client; in this particular instance, the TOUR Championship. What do I know about golf? Honestly, I didn’t know very much at all, but I’m always up for a challenge and this seemed like a fun one.
I spent my summer gearing up for the TOUR Championship. Many of my summer hours were spent reading articles about the top golfers, learning about their personalities and passions.
After many months of background prep work, we were ready to start finalizing story ideas, scheduling editorial meetings and to do what we were hired for: promote our client in the best way we could.
Our focus was to promote TOUR outside of the sports world. Golf is a popular sport, and having the top 30 golfers in the world guarantees sports coverage. Our job was to find creative ways to promote TOUR in other sectors: entertainment, food & beverage and meteorology, just to name a few.
As someone with a love for food and a background in the hospitality sector, I immediately jumped at the chance to promote TOUR as a fan experience – I had no idea that local food venues such as Fox Bros. BBQ and Universal Joint were available at the TOUR Championship, and I was pretty sure the general public had no idea either. I made it my mission to get TOUR media coverage in the food publications.
After getting the go-ahead from the PGA TOUR, I started pitching the TOUR Championship as a fan experience. I wanted to invite local media and bloggers to East Lake Golf Club for a VIP tour and see what it was like to attend as a spectator. I thought it was a great idea and I hoped the media thought so too.
Within hours I had several food writers saying “yes,” they would love to attend this VIP tour as they had never been to a golf tournament. From that point, I ended up hosting at least one tour every day during tournament week.
"Eatin' Good at the PGA Tour"
My first media tour showed up, and it was Hilary Cadigan, the new Food Editor at the Arts & Entertainment publication, Creative Loafing. Why was Hilary interested in attending a media tour at a golf course? Because she didn’t know that the TOUR Championship offered more than just golf. We spent 4 hours together walking around the golf course eating and drinking our way through Fox Bros BBQ, Universal Joint, and William Hill Winery. It was a fun way to spend a Wednesday afternoon. What can I say? It’s a tough job but I am happy to do it! The next day, she wrote an awesome articleon her experience at the TOUR Championship just in time for the first day of the tournament.
I spent the next four days touring all sorts of bloggers, writers, and editors. Everyone I talked to had no idea the TOUR Championship offered such a fun fan experience. I even had one blogger say, “This is something I would do again next year – as a spectator!” That was the moment I felt like I had done my job.
(L-R: Adam Scott, Wendy Hsiao)
The TOUR Championship was a whirlwind of a week and was an absolutely amazing experience. I spent my week alongside some great people from PGA TOUR, and I felt like I was a part of the PGA TOUR family. Not once did anything I was doing feel like work; I enjoyed every minute of it. Thanks to them, I got to hang out with the top 30 golfers in the world and even take a picture with my favorite golfer, Adam Scott! As a PR pro, this was one of the best weeks I could’ve asked for at work. I can’t wait until next year!