I recently attended the 2012 PGA Merchandise Show and was blown away by the progression of golf equipment and apparel. With so many advancements in recent years you?d think that manufacturers had little room to grow but they are truly pushed the boundaries. Golf is stronger than ever and we?re excited to showcase these premium brands.
TaylorMade-Adidas-Ashworth was all-in” at the show and clearly made the strongest push of the manufacturers to showcase their new 2012 products. They had an isolated section at the end of the convention center that created an experience for users rather than just a traditional line presentation at a booth. Products like the RocketBallz line certainly helped make TM the most crowded exhibit at the show. They had a private hitting/demo area to display first-hand the distance gains and showcase all the subtle nuances. TM offered free hotdogs and beer so you could sit back and relax in the bleachers as teaching pro?s break down the advancements for each new golf club. They had a VIP concert area that treated fans to a Thursday night concert by George Thorogood and the Destroyers. There was also a lot of buzz around the apparel lines and footwear from Adidas and Ashworth.
Callaway also had a big presence at the 2012 show and made the decision to combine their equipment and apparel into one large area which was a big step-up from past years. They had a private runaway that at least once every hour walked you through each of the new apparel lines and created a fun environment within their section. Callaway created a more intimate environment compared to other manufacturers with leather chairs that allowed you to have relaxing conversations with their sales reps and take a break from the endless walking around the convention center. You also couldn?t miss the new Odyssey tour truck with putting lessons from highly respected instructors such as Dave Peltz. Callaway continues to be a great brand and markets towards the average golfer.
While Nike Golf did not have the most square footage they still took advantage of the opportunity to highlight their new equipment and always popular apparel lines. We all know that Nike has had great success with their apparel as it applies well towards corporate markets since they are a brand that transcends across all sports and is not specific to golf. Nike Golf provided parsonsKellogg with a private viewing with our key clients in a room outside the main convention area to walk through all of the new styles for their 2012 collection. Their new Dri-FIT fabric is better than ever and we are excited to distribute their styles to the corporate market. They made a push to have a few more fashion forward styles and the Tiger Woods Collection should be more marketable this year as they moved away from the medallion on the sleeve and now have the traditional Nike swoosh (with of course a unique outline to distinguish the collection from other styles). Nike bags and accessory line are great gifts for clients and as always they meet the highest standards in terms of performance look and quality.
Titleist was as popular as ever and highlighted their golf balls which continue to be the #1 ball in golf. They set the standard for advancements in golf balls and when more tour players play with the ProV1 than any other ball in golf you can?t argue the performance. Titleist reps walked us through each of the golf balls along with their equipment lines and Footjoy apparel/shoes. They are clearly proud of their equipment and have always presented themselves as the elite of the golf industry which was visibly obvious from their white suites. We were also excited to see the newest member of the Titleist family the Velocity golf ball. When Titleist releases a new ball it?s always big news and they didn?t disappoint. It features “explosive distance according to their representative. The ball number is also printed in distinctive yellow-orange ink.
One other brand that deserves attention is Puma Golf. They are without question the most fashion forward apparel brand and our proud to be different from each of the other golf manufacturers. With Ricky Fowler being their most marketable player and an Oklahoma State graduate they have embraced the color orange. Each of the Puma sales representatives were wearing bright orange clothes and their booth was without question the brightest within the convention center. They have great apparel lines and for corporations looking for a little more “pop” and visibility look no further than Puma. They even had Johnny Damon walking around with orange pants and a mini-mohawk.
Our Other Friends
While it would take days to review each of the different manufacturers that attended the 2012 PGA Merchandise Show we wanted to make sure to highlight those who stood out above the rest. It was great to see the new styles from brands such as Fairway and Greene Vineyard Vines Peter Millar Imperial Headwear Ahead Ralph Lauren Maui Jim and many others. There were also a lot of great technical products and accessory lines. You would think that core items such as ball markers divot repair tools and headcovers could not change much but we saw quite a few advancements.
As always the 2012 PGA Merchandise show did not disappoint and it was a great opportunity to showcase the latest golf products to our clients and soak in all the knowledge from our corporate sales representative from each golf manufacturer.