#101  
Old 03-15-2014, 09:46 AM
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BirdieMachine BirdieMachine is online now
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Originally Posted by DavidSauls View Post
NTs aren't created, paid for, or run by the PDGA. They're done by people in local communities. Which means we have about as many as possible right now, and can't set dates for them.

Nor does Innova have the resources to make it happen. They put a lot of time and money into a single event, the USDGC, and had to scale it back a few years ago.
I know how the NT's work, point is if they want the top players they need to be a NT.

I didn't know Innova wasn't making much money, I assumed they were doing well.
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  #102  
Old 03-15-2014, 10:05 AM
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Originally Posted by BirdieMachine View Post
I know how the NT's work, point is if they want the top players they need to be a NT.

I didn't know Innova wasn't making much money, I assumed they were doing well.
I assume they're doing well, too.....but to fund a season-long series of NTs and majors and produce a broadcast and buy network time---that's an entirely different scale.

As for the NTs, I may have misread your post as saying the PDGA needs to have more NTs, instead of saying that tournaments need to step up to NTs to draw more top players. Apologies.
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  #103  
Old 03-15-2014, 10:39 AM
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Networks pay to show the programs so it's opposite. Though without a proven product I don't think it really has much value yet so I figure Innova could just get out of it with free advertising. There are tons of sports channels from all the ESPN's, FoxSports, NBCSN, +more. I agree though that it would be expensive and risky if they couldn't make out. I assume they would have to sign a contract with a TV Network before hand to guarantee a payout.
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  #104  
Old 03-15-2014, 10:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidSauls View Post
I assume they're doing well, too.....but to fund a season-long series of NTs and majors and produce a broadcast and buy network time---that's an entirely different scale.

As for the NTs, I may have misread your post as saying the PDGA needs to have more NTs, instead of saying that tournaments need to step up to NTs to draw more top players. Apologies.
Innova probably doesnt want to fund a season-long series because... Players dont make the company crazy money. Does there promotion help? Yes of course, but until you see crowds that arent mostly made up of Am's getting finished, Larger companys will not want to support things of that Size... It all goes back to Whamo.
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  #105  
Old 03-15-2014, 10:56 AM
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Getting more people to play as youths is the key. I know I like to watch niche sports, because I like to play them. I will watch DG on you tube all day. I played volleyball in high school and love to watch indoor volleyball when on. I bowled duckpin for 20+ years and try to watch bowling whenever it is aired. The more popular ball golf, I don't like to watch, but then again, I don;t like to play that. Same with baseball/softball. I don't like to play, I don't like to watch. Bottom line is, I think, we need to get more youths out playing and enjoying it, then they will take it into the future.
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  #106  
Old 03-15-2014, 10:17 PM
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Originally Posted by BirdieMachine View Post
Networks pay to show the programs so it's opposite. Though without a proven product I don't think it really has much value yet so I figure Innova could just get out of it with free advertising. There are tons of sports channels from all the ESPN's, FoxSports, NBCSN, +more. I agree though that it would be expensive and risky if they couldn't make out. I assume they would have to sign a contract with a TV Network before hand to guarantee a payout.
I'm lost now.

Networks pay to show programs only if they have more sponsorship, or expect more sponsorship, than the cost of paying for rights, plus production costs. Sponsors buy that air time based on the expectation that they'll increase their sales by more than the cost of advertisement---and that advertising a particular show will generate more sales growth than other options available to them.

So where's Innova fit in? They're not going to pay the advertising costs for network broadcasting. Who will? What business will expect enough spectators to justify that cost?
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  #107  
Old 03-16-2014, 01:31 PM
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@ David Sauls...

A network will take a chance on any sport (let's say disc golf) if they think its entertainment value is enough to drum up viewership thus increasing its market share and making their ad time more valuable. In the past, the sponsor dollars mostly come from entities that are not directly related to the "event" in question. For example, ExLax paying for commercial time during a Dart Tournament or car race. What does Home Depot have to do with NASCAR? What does Mutual of Omaha have to do with Wild Animals? What does Pepsi have to do with Hockey?

ExLax just wants to get their commercials on the air and traditionally the cost of air time during the dart tournament, or whatever, will be cheaper, and, if there is no objection by the parties involved, they will take the time allotted to them. Ex Lax doesn't specifically buy a particular time (though they can and do but it's more expensive) but rather a package of time slots which will air over a specific period of time. For example: Fifty spots which would air over the second week of March or for the entire month of April. It all depends on air time costs. Of course this is just a minor example of a much larger issue, but I wanted to illustrate that it doesn't have to be Innova or Fly Pad or Disc Nation buying air time. It could be any entity buying air time. Red Bull seems to be a big proponent of lesser known sports, why not disc golf? And for those calling Red Bull poison, etc... check yourself before you wreck yourself. It's a sponsor and Snickers or Bud Light aren't exactly elixirs for a long, healthy life either. I don't drink the stuff but if they want to spend their dollars on my sport, go ahead and plaster your Red Bull flag anywhere you want.

What's more important is that the PRODUCERS of the event make a great product which can be sold to the station (more specifically: the rights to air the program/event for a specific amount of time). So if The Memorial had been filmed, pieced together and presented to meet the basic industry standard it could be sold to a cable station or media conglomerate who could air the program as either original programing, filler, a late-night broadcast, or some other slot on their schedule where they have an opening. Station managers are ALWAYS looking for new material and are ALWAYS willing to take chances. Sometimes it works, a lot of times it doesn't. But they will take the chance. If it's interesting enough, it may attract a viewership from outside of the sport. If the sport pushes the event on its known fans and gets them to watch, thus pushing up the numbers, the next time you have an event to sell to the station, you'll get more interest and support. If the product is clean (nothing that would scare away sponsors - this is where the anti-drug argument comes up) then it's easier to find sponsors willing to support the product. The people at Lou's Tire Emporium in Salt Lake don't care about disc golf (or maybe they do) they just want their ad to run.

If disc golf was presented in a more dynamic way than it is now it would get more attention from stations looking to add content. It's hard to sell disc golf to a station when disc golf is played in a public park with joggers and birthday parties going on in the background. It's hard to sell disc golf as a sport when the "look" of the sport is hard to understand to a casual observer.

I think one way to make it more attractive would be to have a $100,000 challenge. Winner gets 100K, second place 50K, or something like that. Make the event more appealing to the players and put more drama on the line. Make the event more interesting to follow so a viewer can involve themselves in the drama. I know the first question people are going to ask is, "okay, who puts up the $100,000? Well, that's where the disc golf companies need to show up. Or some benefactor with some moxie. It's going to take someone with some love of the sport who has a deep pocket to take that chance.

If the Iditarod with just over 40 competitors and barely over a week of competition can drum up attention, then certainly disc golf can do the same. And the two sports are almost the same age. And again, I bring up skateboarding. It's the same age as disc golf, yet it's flourishing while disc golf is still struggling to find a foothold. What did skateboarding do that disc golf didn't do?

I think I saw a disc golf video from the early eighties or maybe the seventies with Casey Kasem doing the play-by-play. What's interesting is that the winner was playing for 30K. Is that right? Or am I mistaken? 30K in early eighties money. I don't think there's a modern day event that even comes close to that amount. I could be mistaken about that total, but I think that's what they said in the video. I bring this up because obviously the sport had some outside interest at one time and my question is how did that slip away? What was it about the sport that made TV exes pass on any future broadcasts?

I'm not that old but I am not in the best health. But I do hope to live long enough to see disc golf get to that next level. I wish I had the money to be that benefactor for the sport because I would certainly love to see the 100K challenge become a reality.

Last edited by Loomis; 03-16-2014 at 01:35 PM.
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  #108  
Old 03-16-2014, 01:50 PM
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scarpfish scarpfish is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Loomis View Post
I think I saw a disc golf video from the early eighties or maybe the seventies with Casey Kasem doing the play-by-play. What's interesting is that the winner was playing for 30K. Is that right? Or am I mistaken? 30K in early eighties money. I don't think there's a modern day event that even comes close to that amount.
I think you're correct about that total. That was likely the old Wham-O/IFA money. When Wham-O got bought out, that supply of cash disappeared. We've been trying to find a new source ever since.
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  #109  
Old 03-16-2014, 02:10 PM
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I agree Loomis, your explanation was detailed and very lengthy. The Tournament itself doesn't pay to have it covered and shown on TV. The tournament gets paid by the TV Station to allow them to broadcast it. This is most situations. TV sells commercials, thats it their income source.

Disc golf as a product though has probably little value right now so thus I was speculating that a Company like Innova could host the tourneys and also produce the product to air on TV. In return they get Advertising for exchange of the cost of filming and producing the event. TV station wins since it can air the product and sell advertising/commercials during the broadcast. My theory is Innova in this scenario is taking on the risk unless they can sign a contract beforehand to get the tournaments broadcast and guarantee the marketing.

This is where the Major Event TD's need to be stepping in and contacting all the TV stations to sell for free the rights to air the event. Can a TV Network Film, broadcast and produce an event cheaply enough to get paid back and more in Ad dollars? I think it is clear they are not knocking on the door right now for filming rights.
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  #110  
Old 03-16-2014, 02:13 PM
JC17393 JC17393 is offline
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I think you're correct about that total. That was likely the old Wham-O/IFA money. When Wham-O got bought out, that supply of cash disappeared. We've been trying to find a new source ever since.
Not just likely their money, it was their money. As you said, when Whamo was bought out, they ceased funding things like that.

Arguably the closest we have come to something like that since then is probably the USDGC and only in the sense that the biggest manufacturer in the sport organizes and funds (largely through the sale of discs) the tournament.

The idea also gets back to that article Steve Dodge wrote a year or so ago (and seems to resurface every few months as some new reader finds it and starts a thread about it). His idea was for the companies in our sport to each get behind and fund a major pro tournament. Innova with the USDGC, Vibram with the Maple Hill Open, Discraft with the Memorial (?). Those can be the start of building back toward and maybe someday exceeding the old Wham-o backed events of the 70s/early 80s.

None of it, though, is going to be instant gratification. It's all going to take time. Anything that is going to lead to bigger/better things in the sport is going to take more time.
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