BMW PGA Championship
PHA Media worked as the retained PR agency for the Wentworth Club between 2009 and 2011, providing media support to the club as they transformed their world-famous West Course in a multi-million pound makeover. In particular, our expert team worked to co-ordinate media attendance and coverage around the BMW PGA Championship, the European Tour’s flagship event held at Wentworth every May.
In 2009, the Wentworth Club embarked on a major £6 million renovation of their iconic West Course, the scene of the annual BMW PGA Championship. PHA Media were hired by the club to provide PR support throughout the renovation, particularly around the unveiling of the new-look course at the 2010 BMW PGA Championship. We were tasked also with providing a fully integrated press office service around the tournament (over three years) including giving key journalists special previews of the course and its new layout.
Originality and creativity
In the build-up to the 2010 BMW PGA Championship, and the unveiling of the new West Course, PHA Media carefully selected a small group of key golfing journalists to preview the course and receive a personalized tour by club Chairman Richard Caring. Our intention was to positively influence these key media stakeholders and to enable them to understand the work that had taken place in the renovation of the course. When the tournament arrived, we were then able to draw upon these existing relationships to help ensure that the new-look course was positively reflected in media coverage of the event.
Strategy and implementation
PHA Media provided on-event PR support to the club during the BMW PGA Championship over three events from 2009 to 2011. Our strategy centred around providing key media with previews to the club and the West Course in the build-up to the event, and to strengthen Wentworth’s relationships across a broad range of golf, sporting and lifestyle media. At each event, PHA Media’s team also ensured that key messages and statements from the club were communicated to relevant media outlets, including liaising with broadcast teams from the BBC and Sky Sports.
Results and evaluation
Through the media support of PHA Media, Wentworth were able to effectively communicate to the sports media about their changes to the West Course at every step of the renovation progress. Our on-event PR support enabled the club to move quickly during the 2010 BMW PGA Championship when faced with some adverse reaction to the course from the players, and to communicate positively. Our work with Wentworth to preview the club and the West Course ahead of each tournament led to high profile coverage including the Financial Times, Daily Telegraph, The Times and GQ. At each of the three BMW PGA Championships where PHA Media were involved, Wentworth and the European Tour saw record-breaking crowds.