February 11th, 2015
Click On Golf, the video sharing platform exclusively for golfers, was launched to the world in July 2014 as an experiment by co-founders Benjamin Potter and Richard Wilson. Within 6 months, it has become the go-to place to watch, share and upload golf videos and the founders couldn’t be more excited about what’s next.
It all started two years ago when Potter and Wilson – good friends since their rebellious teenage years at school – were about to participate in a game of golf with one of Mr. Potter’s clients.
Although they were former high school and college golfers, Potter and Wilson, both 25 at the time, panicked. It had been some time since they could break 80 with ease and their games were on a steep decline. The day before their tee time, Potter and Wilson went into Google mode and indulged themselves in a plethora of golf videos and articles about how not to look like an idiot on the links. Having surfed seventy-plus websites, they turned to each other – as if a light had been switched on – and realised how much simpler the day would have been if all of this golf content lived on one site.
Example of branded content on Click On Golf
And so the idea for Click On Golf was born.
Potter was a commercial director at the time, creating branded content for companies such as Microsoft, Callaway and Vogue International. Wilson worked exclusively as an investor in property & infrastructure. After trialling the idea for Click On Golf over the next 18 months as an after-work hobby, they made the big leap of faith in June 2014 when CLICKON – the media company that owns Click On Golf amongst several other verticals – became their full-time job.
While the business model evolved between then and December, Potter and Wilson began recruiting key staff members who could turn CLICKON into an end-to-end video agency that handles everything from creative, film production, distribution and evaluation – starting in golf but then moving into other verticals that CLICKON owns.
Click On Golf – the company’s first niche vertical – was met with apprehension by the golf magazines, not surprisingly, who considered them competition. Instead of chasing the likes of Golf Magazine and Golf Digest for partnerships, Potter and Wilson did something unusual. They decided to bypass them under the assumption that golfers no longer want to read biased magazine reviews where the line between editorial and sponsored articles is blurred.
Click On Golf went directly to consumers, instructors and brands. With consumers and instructors, it was easy to convince them to put videos onto the site for free. Famous instructors like Mitchell Spearman, Jonathan Yarwood and Butch Harman started uploading content. Regular golfers then began sharing funny clips playing with friends or amazing shots they’d caught on camera. Within 3 months of launching, Click On Golf was seeing a monthly audience of 150,000 visitors watching, sharing and uploading content to the platform.
Potter and Wilson – along with their experienced head of marketing Jilayne Lovejoy – began talking with brands.
Brands weren’t offered the the same free service if they wanted to be featured on the homepage or in hot positions across the site. Potter and Wilson decided that there had to be an important distinction between branded content and user-generated content, and that Click On Golf was only going to thrive by offering two very different services – one for brands, one for consumers.
Brands can create an Official Channel on Click On Golf – albeit at a price – within 24 hours. Their content gets cycled around the site to drive significant golfing eyeballs to their videos. Since launching the Official Channel option for brands just six weeks ago, two of the game’s largest manufacturers have already signed up, realising the potential to connect their content to golfers already using the site.
“The brands that use Click On Golf as a marketing and advertising platform get a service unlike any other out there. With dedicated account managers to help optimise content placement, data analysts, and of course our creative division which handles film production, brands are beginning to realise the exciting opportunities by working with CLICKON,” said Benjamin Potter.
With a new site just launched that claims to be the fastest in the game, Click On Golf is now running an original content initiative to help it grow to a wider market. Already, over 50 countries tune in per month to consume content on the site, but Potter and Wilson want to ensure that Click On Golf resonates even more strongly in the solid golf markets of North America, Europe and Asia through inspiring, engaging and informative content.