Zeus Digital and Golf
How does a digital marketing company end up being involved in the sport of Long Drive? Those who follow us closely have probably noticed our connection to the golf industry. It was purely natural that we would gravitate to golf…we love it! Most of us here are avid golfers, and we readily recognized the need for our services in that industry. We became so heavily involved that we actually created a sister company (iNetGolf, LLC) to specifically concentrate on the marketing needs of any company in the golf industry.
We recognized a resurgence in Long Drive interest when NBC Sports purchased the LDA (Long Drivers of America) in 2015 and began airing it on The Golf Channel. They branded it as World Long Drive (WLD) and took a sport that began in 1975 a gave it new life. Those folks certainly saw the potential for growth. Long Drive is a very exciting aspect of the game that has (barely) sustained itself over the past 3 decades, but, nevertheless survived, and for good reason. The Golf Channel has been able to highlight the excitement of the sport. We’re huge fans and support their efforts 100%.
Anyone Can Compete
This writer has ALWAYS been a fan of long drive. But, I admit I didn’t see the full potential until recently when I began supporting the guys at ParaLong Drive. There are amputees, paraplegics, and guys and gals with varying disabilities competing in this sport…with amazing accomplishments. It became obvious that Long Drive was not just for the professionals. So, the concept of Amateur Long Drive™ became a reality in 2017 to give anyone at any age the ability to compete to be a champion long driver in their respective divisions. Amateur Long Drive™ has male and female divisions for youth, adults, seniors, super seniors, and adaptive golfers. We dove in, created a website, negotiated an agreement with a local course, set a date, and held the first Amateur Long Drive™ World Championship August 25th 2017. We expected 30 to 40 hitters and were delighted to see 100 show up to compete. It was incredible to see the Adaptive golf hitters and their ability to compete as aggressively as able-bodied hitters. We saw hitters of all ages compete. Our Open World Champion, Mark Lawrence of Utah, actually advanced out of the Senior Division to compete and win. It was not easy cruise for Mark, though. He was up against Jonathan Shaw advanced out of the ParaLong Drive hitters to compete for the Open Championship. Jonathan is a below-the-knee amputee who can crush a golf. It was very impressive to watch these two in head-to-head competition.
Amateur Long Drive™ may prove to become a feeder system for the pros. In just the second year (as of this writing) we’re already seeing aspiring competitors use the series to develop their skills in preparation to move to professional long drive. We’ve also seen an interest among boys and girls from 10 years old and up. So, this series not only develops players, it can broaden the fan base for the sport in general.
The most touching, and completely unexpected occurrence was meeting 4′ 11″, 100 pound, 15 year old Henry O’Grady recently at our qualifier in Charleston, SC. Henry has Down Syndrome and autism….and loves golf. His mother and grandfather brought him to the range to do his favorite pastime…hitting his driver. His mother walked over to our tent, checked us out, and asked if Henry could compete. She had recently told one of her friends that Henry became bored with the overall game of golf, but loved his driver. She “wished” there was a way from him to compete with just his driver. On that day, her wish came true. And, by the way, Henry can pound it!. Henry also got to do a photo op with 3 time World Long Drive Champion, Sean “The Beast” Fister.
Marketing Long Drive
With digital marketing at our core, we have applied the same practices and techniques we provide to our clients to growing our Long Drive series. Social marketing has proven to be the big winner. We’re always using the terms efficient and effective when we describe digital marketing. Nothing has proven to be more efficient and effective in this venture than social marketing. Although we’re making some headway on Twitter and Instagram, Facebook has given us the biggest return by far.