Academic journal article The McKinsey Quarterly

It's All in the Follow-Through

Academic journal article The McKinsey Quarterly

It's All in the Follow-Through

Article excerpt

By every possible measure, golf is enormously popular.

During the past 50 years, the number of golfers in the United States increased sevenfold as the game was transformed from an expensive diversion of the rich into a mass-market pastime. Nonetheless, golf has now reached a crossroads. A McKinsey study for the National Golf Foundation has determined that unless the game is marketed more aggressively, both the owners of golf courses and the manufacturers of golf equipment and clothing face slower growth. In short, the industry risks becoming as mature as its archetypal customer.

McKinsey found that the better part of the industry's revenue growth since the halcyon days of the mid-1980s has come from higher prices and greater spending by golfers on equipment, fees, and apparel; the number of players and the time they devote to the game had largely stopped rising as long ago as 1991 (Exhibit 1).

The study notes as well that though the number of golf rounds played will probably grow by 1.5 percent every year for the next 12, courses will actually become less crowded because so many new ones are being built (Exhibit 2).

In the past, the golf industry did little to promote demand, because the ownership of courses was fragmented and the sport's natural growth rate was strong. Besides, it was assumed that devoted golfers would be turned off if too many duffers crowded the greens. But going forward, the industry must find ways to create more committed golfers--defined, in part, as people who play upward of eight rounds a year. Our research found that more than 40 million former players, young players, and nonplayers have a strong interest in golf and might take up the game (or play more often) in the future. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.