Golf Magazine

Social Media Golf Celebrities and Their Impact on Golf

Posted on the 28 December 2016 by Golfforbeginners

Do you follow Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Bubba Watson...Paige Spiranac... on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook? If so you are not alone as followers are in the millions for these golfers. Is it because of how they play or what they say?
From professional golfers becoming popular via contentious tweets to phenom beauties making a name for themselves on Instagram, the impact golfers have on social media has been an enormous game changer.
Advertisers are jumping on board the social media express, tying into the celebrity to get their product noticed; the monetization value of a single tweet from Tiger Woods was calculated at $33,911 while a single McIlroy tweet was $16,161 with Ian Poulter valued at $11,982. So, the next time you are reading posts from your favorite golfer, think about the subliminal impact it is having on you.
Golf, the once exclusive pastime for the rich and famous, has gone mainstream but has it abandoned its core values to gain visibility and does it now have to right the ship?
Listed below are a few Social Golf moments to consider: do you think, overall, that social media has helped or hurt the game using these examples? 
1. There are different levels of enjoyment within the game of golf for the fan, from watching great tournament shots to learning about the new equipment from Ping, TaylorMade and Titleist and looking for the upcoming great stars who can be "the next Tiger Woods". Instagram has helped launch the career of Paige Spiranac much like the way Justin Bieber was found on A million social media fans have catapulted this good golfer into the Dubai Ladies Masters despite not officially qualifying for LPGA or LET status.
One of the top female golfers and 4th in the Rolex Rankings, Shanshan Feng has only 933 Instagram followers (2,556 Twitter followers) compared with the 1 + million (884,000 Instagram) Spiranac followers. Although Feng lets her sticks do the talking on the golf course, she needs to gain similar influence or she may be watching from the sidelines over time as others line their pockets via the power of well-placed photos and tweets. Global publicity for the LET and LPGA increases purses and the internet has been chosen as the delivery vehicle.

Happy holidays! Ready for gifts🎅🏻🎄🎁 #merryxmas — Shanshan Feng (@shanshanfengCHN) December 24, 2016

2. Did we really need to know that? Is it interesting to you to know what a golfer had for breakfast and/or do we really need to see guys like Jordan Spieth or Rickie Fowler hamming it up, shirtless on vacation?
Thousands upon thousands of fans follow the top guys in golf (Spieth has 1.71 million followers) which is also great for his sponsors who help strategically place their equipment in threads and posts; Titleist ProV1x and Under Armour. The tweet below for the Titleist ProV1 golf ball received 294 retweets and over 2,000 likes:

First week with the new 2017 @Titleist ProV1x was a success. No surprise it's the #1ballingolf — Jordan Spieth (@JordanSpieth) November 30, 2016

Have you tried these any of these golf brands because of a post tweeted from a famous golfer? If so, you are not alone. Advertisers, who once saw results in a TV commercial during a round of golf, are finding that well-placed posts and online videos are equally effective, using brand ambassadors to relate to consumers. It's easy and cost effective to get the message out using Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Instagram, and, you get a lot more bank for your buck.
What may be a boon to advertisers may also hurt them as we can also "read" the thoughts of golfers when they are at odds with the game. One very candid, prominent social golfer, Ian Poulter, lets fans know when they (or the system) are out of bounds but this type of power can also be dangerous.
For example, after calling Ian Poulter an unfavorable "name" on Facebook, an average-joe deliveryman was the recipient of one of Poulter's effective posts causing the man's place of business to apologize to Poulter and to re-rout the driver to a different office. Ian Poulter nearly cost a man his job; it's easy to get attention when you have over two-million followers and the power of social media in your corner. He is heard, seen and can get someone fired with words as he has previously done.
Although the man was clearly wrong costing Poulter his shot to land in the drink, Poulter, who makes millions each year, could have cost this worker his in the social sphere? 
Lesson what you say and to whom you say it on social media.
3. Good can come of it! Golf social media celebs can also make a positive impact on the game. Many players post about their favorite causes, foundations and those of the PGA Tour, bringing great visibility and more donations to help others in need.

My pop would be proud of how the #heroworldchallenge has grown. We’ve raised more than $26M for youth programs. –TW — Tiger Woods (@TigerWoods) December 1, 2016

Do you think professional players' social media impact on golf has been positive? State your case in our golf blog comments section below and tag/follow us on Twitter @Golf4Beginners.
Golf for Beginners wishes all of our friends and followers a very Happy New Year.
Thanks for reading our blogs; we look forward to your thoughts, shares and retweets for 2017.

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