Part 1 - As prominently displayed on our website, 2013 marks the 10th Anniversary of the Colvin Sports Network (CSN) founded by golf industry expert Bill Colvin.
As a matter of interest, Bill Colvin and our colleague, Curt Curtis, worked together for many years at IMG when “the father of modern day sports marketing,” Mark McCormack, was at the helm. Later, they joined forces at GolfWatch (an official hospitality licensee with the PGA TOUR), MarComm Partners and Octagon. The author of this article has had the good fortune of working with both Bill and Curt since our days at GolfWatch and MarComm Partners.
Bill Colvin’s career in the golf business spans more than 25 years. During that time, Bill has worked with most of the biggest names in golf from Arnold Palmer, Gary Player and Lee Trevino to Tom Watson, Johnny Miller and Greg Norman to Phil Mickelson, Davis Love III, Annika Sorenstam and Suzann Pettersen.
This is the first of a two-part blog post celebrating the tenth anniversary of the Colvin Sports Network and highlighting its biggest milestones.
1. Humana Challenge
In 2012, Bill Colvin played a key role in signing Humana as the title sponsor of the Humana Challenge (the new name for the event formerly known as the Bob Hope Classic), and knows what it takes to develop a strategic plan that effectively activates a title sponsorship. The Humana Challenge was named the Sports Event of the Year at the 2012 Sports Business Journal / Sports Business Daily Awards Dinner.
2. HP Byron Nelson Championship
It’s one of the premier events on the PGA Tour. In 2003, Hewlett-Packard (HP), with the help of the Colvin Sports Network, negotiated a deal with the PGA TOUR. HP extended its golf sponsorship in 2008 (through 2014) as a result of the tangible business and community benefits it received. The HP Byron Nelson Championship ranks consistently as the No. 1 PGA TOUR event in charitable donations.
Photo (Right) - Colvin Sports Network's Maggie Colvin and Bill Colvin with 2013 Accenture Match Play Champion Matt Kuchar at HP Golf Clinic: Courtesy of Colvin Sports Network.
Brand Ambassador Programs:
1. Humana Brand Ambassador Program
The challenge for Humana was to hire a TEAM of ambassadors to perform an assortment of activities from customer entertainment to branding. The solution was to engage CSN to broker the deals between the professional golfers’ agencies and Humana.
CSN’s experience and domain knowledge led to a very successful start to the relationships that have lasted for over five years and will continue for at a minimum of two more. Knowing the market and the personalities and objectives of both parties allowed for these arrangements to be successful.
Bill Colvin secured endorsement deals with Champions Tour Pro Hale Irwin and PGA Tour Pros (Davis Love III, David Toms, Bo Van Pelt, Brett Quigley, Harris English) who are now an integral part of Humana’s brand ambassador program. And he recently negotiated Humana’s new well-being ambassador deal with golfing legend Gary Player. To read more, click on the following link: 4 Effective Practices Humana Fits Into Their Pro Golf Sponsorships.
2. Dow Brand Ambassador Program
Bill Colvin served as their knowledgeable advocate during the recruitment and negotiation process in the signing of LPGA players Suzann Pettersen and Jiyai Shin; Champions Tour player Corey Pavin; and PGA Tour players Sean O’Hair and Tom Gillis. To read more, click on the following link: Professional Golfer Sponsorships - 3 Best Practices.
The NYSE (Steve Stricker), HP, and United Airlines have also replicated this TEAM concept with the assistance of the Colvin Sports Network.
With regard to the aforementioned brand ambassador programs, it should be noted that Bill’s success rate is measured, not only by the numerous golfers recruited on behalf of CSN’s corporate clients, but by the length of their contracts which, when renewed, average five years or more.
1.The Corner-Stone Schools of Detroit
In 2003, The Corner-Stone Schools of Detroit asked Colvin Sports Network for help in designing a fundraising event.
The school was proactive in securing Arnold Palmer, the winner of the 1954 U.S. Amateur at the Country Club of Detroit, for the event. The idea was expanded by CSN to create an event commemorating the 50th anniversary of his win with a U.S. Amateur reunion of all the past champions
CSN secured 31 of the past 39 U.S. Amateur Champions including Phil Mickelson, Matt Kuchar, Mark O’Meara and Fred Ridley ( former USGA President and current Chairman of Masters Competition Committee.) The event raised six million dollars.
Bill Colvin is constantly collaborating with his corporate clients to help ensure the success of their golf sponsorships. He can be reached on his cell at 216-272-7779 or by email: email@example.com. You can also follow him on Twitter: billcolvin.
To learn how Colvin Sports Network serves as an advocate for companies exploring marketing opportunities with professional golfers, click on the button below.
For part 2, click on link below:
Photo Credit, Humana Win ad with Harris English, 2013 Fedex St. Jude Classic Winner: Courtesy of Colvin Sports Network.
Photo Credit, Arnold Palmer, 50th Anniversary Reunion of U.S. Amateur Win: Courtesy of Colvin Sports Network.