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Volume 21 No. 1
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PGA Tour incorporating live leaderboards into its digital brand advertising on other sites

The PGA Tour routinely runs its brand advertising on mainstream sports sites like Yahoo, and Bleacher Report. But now those online ads, which typically run in advance of sports video content, will carry live leaderboards as well.

The tour has an agreement with an online video ad agency, New York-based Eyeview, to combine its digital advertising with its leaderboards to give the spots a different look online.

The leaderboards update in real time each instance the tour’s video advertising is activated. What viewers see, for example, would be a 20-second “These Guys Are Good” spot followed by five seconds of the live leaderboard. These spots with leaderboard updates run when the tournament is underway. There is no tournament leaderboard on the ads on days when there is no tournament.

The leaderboards will follow 20-second spots, but only while events are underway.

The same ShotLink technology that feeds live leaderboards to and several other digital outlets also feeds the live leaderboards to these online ads.

“We’ve positioned all of our digital products as ‘Everything is live,’ even the advertising,” said Brian Woyt, the tour’s senior director of brand marketing.

The tour wouldn’t say what it spends on these digital ads, but it works with Doner Media on ad placement and strategy.

“This is a never-been-done video execution for the tour,” said Bob Tacy, senior vice president of digital media at Doner. “This helps the tour create new ways to discover live results, and it further elevates the brand.”

The tour began experimenting with the leaderboards in its advertising with select events earlier this season, including the Players Championship this month. What it found is that clicks through to from the digital ads with the leaderboards increased 33 percent over the ads without leaderboards.

Depending on budgeting the rest of the season, the tour expects to use the leaderboard on its ads for bigger events, such as WGC tournaments and the season-ending Tour Championship.

“The live leaderboard is a powerful way to deliver value to sports fans and driving viewers to tune in to tournament coverage,” said Eyeview CEO Oren Harnevo.