What is Make Golf Your Thing?
In 2020, the golf industry united together to address two simultaneous opportunities: how to bring greater diversity to our sport and how to build on the momentum that golf has experienced since the pandemic began. A year later, “Make Golf Your Thing” was launched as a collaborative effort across the golf industry to ensure the future of golf is open to everyone.
This multi-faceted, multi-year campaign invites people to the sport from all backgrounds to enjoy the game of a lifetime in their own way.
Make Golf Your Thing consists of six cross-industry work groups which collaboratively advance golf’s diversity, equity and inclusion:
1. Education & Skill Development: Inviting people from all backgrounds to this game starts at the point of play by ensuring inclusion and accessibility to all. Make Golf Your Thing remains focused on finding facilities, instructors, and operators who’ve adopted the practices of the inclusion guidelines and to bring awareness to their DEI resources. The Education & Skill Development work group is dedicated to bringing newcomers and those interested in the game to inclusive environments, where they can learn the game of golf and feel welcomed while doing it. Resources and information will be made available through the ADM search engine for those seeking it.
2. Talent Acquisition: Make Golf Your Career works to identify, attract, and engage more talent from diverse backgrounds through an industry-wide job portal for golf industry employers and potential job seekers. The goal of the Talent Acquisition work group is to provide a job portal that will reach and engage an audience of job seekers who will bring their diverse backgrounds to the golf industry. This job portal will link directly to the industry partner’s career page and create a one-stop shop for employers and potential candidates.
3. Procurement: Make Golf Your Business is dedicated to the creation of a diverse supplier database connecting minority-owned businesses to golf courses, tournaments, and industry leads. With the establishment of the VRAConnect.org supplier portal, industry leaders like the PGA TOUR, LPGA, PGA of America, USGA, & NGCOA can connect with vendors, content creators, apparel brands, and more. The supplier portal provides businesses a new opportunity to introduce their goods & services to the golf industry by registering their business at VRAConnect.org.
4. Human Resources: Charged with developing human resource policies, protocols or programs that promote diversity, equity and inclusion across golf industry employers. The human resources work group recently facilitated an industry-wide employee survey to better understand the composition and sentiments of golf’s workforce.
5. Youth and Adult Player Development: Works to bolster community-based programs that are authentically engaging consumers from diverse backgrounds. Focused on supporting community-based programs and consumers, the youth & adult player development work group created the Grassroots Grants program. Phase I of the program distributed $150,000 to 43 grassroots organizations committed to exposing underrepresented groups to the game.
Coupled with expansion of the Grassroots Grants program, a second initiative is centered around the development of a location-based directory of these golf programs for consumers of all abilities wishing to participate further in the sport.
6. Marketing and Communications: Works to establish one unified voice to grow interest in golf participation. To understand the success of messaging around Make Golf Your Thing, a pre and post launch survey was conducted, along with a targeted advertising campaign to a non-traditional golf audience, and a geo-framing study to examine consumer behavior. Initial results demonstrated an overall positive reaction to the brand’s messaging. This group is focused on promoting all other work groups under the Make Golf Your Thing banner, along with making improvements to the industry toolkit. An additional priority includes a continued focus on targeted marketing and communications initiatives to non-traditional golf audiences.
Thank You for your interest in becoming part of #makegolfyourthing. As the golf industry comes together to support this incredible movement, we would also like to thank those organizations and companies that stepped up at the beginning as founding sponsors to help make #makegolfyourthing a reality including our partners at the AGIC, who are committed to helping us to make this great game more welcoming and inclusive for all.