The Golf Channel ups SVP, Marketing
The Golf Channel has announced the promotion of Regina O’Brien to the role of senior vice president of marketing, according to World Golf
Prior to joining Orlando, Fla.-based The Golf Channel, O’Brien was senior director of advertising and marketing communications for Comcast in Philadelphia, where she was involved with the successful revitalization of the corporation’s overall brand and the launch of the on-demand horror channel FearNet.
The Golf Channel also announced the promotion of Matt Justine to regional VP of sales for GolfNow.com, the network’s tee-time business. He will oversee all sales and marketing initiatives in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, Southeast and East Regions.
Rob Monson has been promoted to senior director of online marketing, and will be responsible for the marketing strategy and execution of the Golf Channel’s new media assets, including GolfChannel.com, GolfNow.com, the TravelGolf.com network and Golf Channel Amateur Tour.
Darcie McCallum, formerly regional marketing manager for GolfNow.com, has been promoted to director of marketing, tee times and events. She will oversee all marketing initiatives for GolfNow.com and Golf Channel Amateur Tour.
The Golf Channel multimedia company runs a cable network, co-founded by Arnold Palmer and is a subsidiary of Comcast Corporation. The channel is now available in more than 120 million homes worldwide and broadcasts global golf tournaments, live golf coverage, instruction and original programming.
In this new capacity, O’Brien will lead all of the marketing and promotional efforts
for The Golf Channel
cable network and its platform of new media businesses, including GolfChannel.com.
Since joining Golf Channel in 2007, O’Brien has been responsible for overseeing the evolution of the network’s overall brand and driving the marketing and communication strategies for Golf Channel’s promotional campaigns.
A Golf Channel representative speaking on background told WinmoEdge that The Golf Channel’s media outreach depends entirely on which show the channel is promoting. He said that it also depends on the target the channel’s hoping to capture.
“We’ll do spends with the golf trades and golf weeklies, and then also with larger publications too,” he said. “I know the PGA (Professional Golf Association) does a lot of print ads for the tour, and we’re included in those ads, so it’s a broad spectrum of places.”
Our source said that The Golf Channel will reach out to industry folks as well as consumers, and is looking at ramping up social media efforts.
“We’re catching up with the times as far as social media goes – we have our Facebook page, we have our Twitter account, and our new media department will be figuring out the newest initiatives,” he said. “For the past year and a half, we’ve really expanded our new media division for golfchannel.com. It’s a totally different product than it was about a year ago.”
Naturally, The Golf Channel’s target demographic is an affluent male, typically between the ages of 18 and 34, the spokesperson said. He added that with the social media aspect, and now with the channel’s new shows rolling out this year, The Golf Channel will be tapping into a more general audience, as opposed to a niche golfer.
“’Being John Daly,’ is our new reality series following him and trying to get his golf game and life back in order, ‘The Haney Project,’ which we did with Charles Barkley and our second season with Ray Romano and a new show with Donald Trump premiering this spring – we’re trying with those entertainment shows to capture that casual viewer,” he said.
Thursday through Sunday, The Golf Channel solely broadcasts tournament coverage, which our source said will cater specifically to the golf aficionados, but it’s the Monday through Wednesday reality show entertainment that The Golf Channel is hoping will attract those interested in watching entertainment programming that they won’t find anywhere else.
“No company’s immune to the economy, and in terms of our channel, our viewership has remained there,” the spokesperson said. “Naturally, with Tiger on his indefinite leave, that hurts the game of golf, but to put it into context, we broadcast 150 tournaments a year and Tiger plays in 15 of them. So, our viewers will be there regardless – we’re doing fine.”
Our source said that The Golf Channel is no longer working with Los Angeles-based Rogers & Cowan for its public relations efforts, but has instead hired New York-based Dan Klores Communications and keeps them on retainer to extend the channel’s media outreach for different shows in an effort to get the word out about The Golf Channel’s new programming.
Dan Klores Communication also promotes the talent of the golf and sports in more of an entertainment and lifestyle category. On the PR side, Dan Klores handles publicity initiatives for the channel and also handles media outreach, but was unable to comment on agency relationships on the marketing side.
According to The Nielsen Company, The Golf Channel spent about $7.9 million on measured media in 2008. About $5.4 million was spent on national magazine ads, $940,000 was spent on national newspaper ads and about $800,000 was spent on Internet ads.
The Golf Channel spokesperson told WinmoEdge that Chief Marketing Officer Gene Pizzolato oversees the company’s strategic partnership initiatives for the channel, and would be the person to reach out to when discussing those types of opportunities.
The Golf Channel
7580 Commerce Center Drive
Orlando, FL 32819
Senior Vice President, Marketing
Chief Marketing Officer