Planning the Perfect Golf Tournament: Tips and Strategies

Golf Tournament Planning

Run Successful Golf Outings with these Free Golf Tournament Planning Resources

GolfRegistrations provides golf tournament planners with a complete set of free tournament resources to help make your outing a success. Our tournament planning resources include a planner with a checklist, a downloadable budget, a set of standard letter templates, and more. These free resources, along with our software platform, are part of our commitment to helping large and small organizations run successful and profitable golf tournaments year-round.

Now, let’s discuss the ten steps to golf tournament planning success!

Step 1: Selecting Your Planning Committee

Selecting Your Golf Planning Committee

A strong golf tournament planning committee with the right balance of dedication, special events experience, and communication skills is key to your tournament’s success. 

Here is a list of members or sub-committees that are typically part of a golf tournament planning committee:

  • Event Planner: This is the primary tournament manager who heads up the committee and handles important logistics of the golf event. The event planner is responsible for being the venue and vendor liaison, managing day of event logistics, approving the golf tournament software, and volunteer management.
  • Treasurer: The tournament treasurer should have a knack for numbers. They work with the committee to project tournament costs and fundraising goals, then assist with bookkeeping, reconciling throughout the event, and reporting the final numbers after the event.
  • Secretary: The secretary is responsible for recording and distributing the minutes of each meeting, along with tasks and assignments. 
  • Sponsorship Recruitment: Sponsorship recruitment includes obtaining corporate and business sponsorships, monetary donations from individuals, and procurement of in-kind donations for prizes or services needed. 
  • Marketing: Marketing is an overarching umbrella of several types of efforts to raise awareness and garner attention for the fundraising event. Marketing Committee members are tasked with responsibilities such as media/public relations, social media, and graphic design.

Step 2: Determining Tournament Logistics

The logistics of the golf tournament involve establishing the basic details revolving around the event – the what, when, and where. Here are some things to discuss with the golf committee and the golf course staff:

  • Event Date and Time – Having a golf course in great condition during the time of your tournament is one of the key appeals to your golf day.
  • Course Location – If you have the budget, private and exclusive clubs can bring in golfers.
  • Deciding on the Golf Tournament Format – While the scramble is certainly the most common, you can consider golf marathons and other golf tournament formats.
Determining Golf Tournament Logistics

Step 3: Golf Tournament Budgeting

Golf Tournament Budgeting

How much money do you want to raise? A reasonable, optimistic financial goal is key to successful golf tournament planning. A successful golf tournament ensures that the budget has been discussed and planned to cover your costs and raise the funds needed for your charitable cause. Knowing your costs is the first step in budgeting. This will also help determine your golf entry fees and awards banquet pricing and set the threshold for monetary sponsorship goals.

GolfReg makes it easy! Use our free Golf Tournament Budget Download.

Step 4: Creating a Great Golf Tournament Website

Your golf tournament website is the central hub for distributing information about your tournament. Don’t skip this step, as it will save your team the hassle of manually managing registrations and sales, handling cash payments, and completing foursomes. GolfRegistrations offers the industry-leading platform for fundraising golf tournaments, you can sign up for free and test out the functionality with your golf committee.

With our golf tournament software, your organization’s mobile-responsive website will be administered and managed via the administration area. Tournament administrators can:

  • Register players and teams with the ability to ask handicap and custom questions.
  • Manage foursome pairings.
  • Sell golf tournament products to increase revenue – including dinner or bar tickets, mulligan packages, and raffles. 
  • Configure custom sponsorship packages and promote sponsors online.
  • Easily integrate with Stripe or PayPal for secure credit card processing.

GolfRegistrations Is the Industry-Leading Golf Tournament Website Platform for Nonprofit and Charity Events

Step 5: Finding Golf Tournament Sponsors

Finding Tournament Sponsors

Corporate and community sponsors are critical in any successful golf tournament fundraiser. These corporations and local businesses help increase awareness for an event by promoting it to their employees and customers via social media, which is helpful when it is time to attract the attention of local media and recruit golfers. Most importantly, sponsors create a financial backbone by helping to offset tournament costs, which are generally quite high. 

Sponsorship can be one of the most challenging aspects of fundraising event planning. However, proactive planning, a strong and communicative team, and consistent follow-up are the keys to obtaining adequate sponsors to make your event successful.

Read more on attracting golf tournament sponsors for your tournaments.

Step 6: Recruiting Golfers

Once the tournament date and location have been finalized, prepare the event collateral, including a personalized letter and/or email to potential golfers. This should be sent to your organization’s mailing list of supporters, local golf players, past event participants, and local businesses. This is a great opportunity to educate community members on the importance of their support and the cause that their contributions will be helping.

Make sure to begin again with the planning committee, having members reach out to their networks for anyone they know who might like to participate in the golf outing. Then, start outreach to local businesses, golf associations, and community outlets to reach out to new people within the area. Also, contact local media outlets to pique interest in those who have not heard of your organization or the event.

Send all potential golfers to your golf tournament website to register and pay online easily and securely.

Recruiting Golfers

Step 7: Managing Volunteers for Tournament Day

Managing Volunteers

Volunteers are the backbone of your golf tournament. Your event will be enjoyable because a strong volunteer team ensures that every attendee is taken care of with attention. While these are some tasks to remember when finding volunteers to help with the event, the volunteer leader is the team’s glue. This may be a tournament committee member or another trusted volunteer with experience, calm composure, and a solution-oriented attitude. 

You’ll need volunteers to help with the tournament setup and take down, registration and welcome, the awards ceremony and presentations, raffle ticket sales, and the silent auction. It’s always wise to have a runner or floaters that can do anything that comes up and give other volunteers a break.

Step 8: Implementing Contests to Increase Fundraising Potential

Golf contests and activities can add more variety and fun to a golf tournament and are another way to earn significant funds for the event. Best of all, they are easy to run. Hole in One contests, Beat the Pro, and putting contests are some of the most popular options to add to your golf tournament planning.

Read more on golf tournament contests.

Implementing Contests to Increase Fundraising Potential

Step 9: Organizing the Awards Banquet

Organizing the Awards Banquet

Hosting a golf tournament awards banquet lets your organization thank attendees and sponsors for participating and offer recognition for your event’s best players or fundraisers. It is also a great chance to share your cause and achievements. Remember that some golfers are just being introduced to your organization. The banquet can be a full sit-down dinner reception or something less formal – such as a BBQ or taco line. 

When done well, the awards banquet also offers an opportunity to significantly increase the funds raised at your outing. Individual tickets or tables can be sold to those not attending your outing. This gives partners and non-golfers a chance to enjoy the fundraising event. 

Fundraising raffles are a great way to raise money and engage attendees who are not playing in the tournament but are attending the reception. The success of your raffle relies on great raffle prizes, so raffles also mean an extra effort towards in-kind sponsorship acquisition. If impressive prizes are lacking, you should also consider purchasing prizes. We offer amazing and one of a kind vacation packages for sale.

Hosting successful live and silent auctions can also dramatically increase the funds raised at your awards banquet. Again, selecting or procuring appealing auction items is key to your success here. Live auction items should be limited in number and should be high-value items. Silent auctions are great for smaller items you have received via in-kind donations and can take place throughout the banquet.

Step 10: Wrapping Up the Tournament

Be sure to have a full committee meeting within seven days of the tournament when everyone’s memories are fresh. At this meeting, everything is discussed, evaluated (what was successful and what wasn’t?), and documented for next year. Remember that even key volunteers and nonprofit staff members often change from year to year, so you cannot rely on people’s memories. Document everything in a file that can be handed over to next year’s golf tournament planning committee to take advantage of the lessons you learned and build on your success.

Write a great thank you letter that describes your success, including how much you raised and what you plan to do with the money. Send it to golfers, sponsors, volunteers, and supporters. Thank everyone for their contributions, and highlight your key sponsors. Add this to the home page of your golf tournament website, along with photos from the tournament.

Wrapping Up the Tournament

Get Started with Our Free Golf Tournament Software Platform

We offer easy-to-use, free golf tournament software to help your organization raise more money online. Our platform powers the features you need:

  • Customizable Golf Tournament Website to Match Your Brand
  • Responsive Website Templates for Engagement Anywhere
  • Sell Individual Golfer and Foursome Registrations
  • Manage Team Pairings 
  • Add Product Sales to Earn More
  • Integrated Online Auction and Raffle Functionality
  • Text to Donate and Scan to Donate Features
  • Customizable Email Confirmations Sent to All Registrants
  • Track Financial Progress with Fundraising Thermometers
  • Secure Payment Processing and Donations
  • Promotion Codes for Discounted or Free Registrations
  • Easy Social Media Share
Golf Tournament Management Software

More Free Golf Tournament Resources

Golf Tournament Planning - Tournament Budget

Golf Tournament Planning Budget

Financial tracking and planning is key to golf tournament planning success. Our golf event budget is pre-populated with all major golf outing income and expense categories and includes a profit/loss summary for both estimated and actual expenses. Whatever size event you are hosting, this budget will help predict and estimate costs and monitor income and expenses throughout the planning stages. Further, a consultant can review the budget to help you with product ordering, fundraising, and profitability goals.

Golf Tournament Planning - Flyers

Golf Tournament Flyers (Fliers)

Golf tournament flyers help organizations spread the word about charity golf tournaments throughout the community. Marketing and promoting a fundraising tournament is an essential part of the planning process that cannot be overlooked. In addition to a GolfReg golf tournament website, consider putting flyers with important tournament information up in your local areas. These free template flyers can be easily customized to suit your event.

With DoJiggy Custom Print, tournament flyers are high quality, affordable, and hassle-free. 

Golf Tournament Planning - Document Templates

Tournament Document Templates

Our golf tournament document templates are a complete golf tournament communication set. The set includes a sample sponsor solicitation letter, sponsor confirmation, and player confirmation letters (you may not need these if you use online registration), participant thank you, and golf course confirmation letters. Download and customize to meet your tournament needs.