As the Internet becomes more and more integrated into our daily lives, creating and facilitating a successful marketing plan is more of a challenge than ever before.

What do the latest trends tell us about the future of marketing and communicating in the golf industry? That will be the featured topic in an educational session at the 24th Annual ING Spring Conference, scheduled for June 1-4 at Resorts Casino Hotel in Atlantic City.

The Marketing Trends seminar, set for 10:15 a.m. on the first full day of the conference, will be conducted by Jon Last, Founder and President of Sports and Leisure Research Group, a full service marketing research consultancy that supports leading brands in sports, travel and media.

Last’s 25-plus years of professional experience includes seven years as VP Corporate Marketing for Golf Digest Companies, and eight years at the PGA of America, where he oversaw marketing research, consumer marketing and retailing.

A frequent speaker and featured columnist for Media Post’s Marketing: Sports, Last holds an M.B.A. from Wharton and a B.A. from Tufts.  He is a former national president of the U.S. Marketing Research Association (MRA) and presently serves on the national board of directors for the Executive Women’s Golf Association and Marketing Research Institute International.

Last will share recent research in his presentation, helping attendees gain a greater understanding of how the utilization of Internet and Social Media Marketing can blend with traditional marketing methods in delivering messages to the golf consumer.



Approximately 150 people will attend the 24th Annual ING Spring Conference in Atlantic City. Resorts Casino Hotel will serve as the official headquarters of the conference, hosting all of the educational sessions and most of the meal and networking elements of the meeting. It was the first casino hotel to open in Atlantic City, back in 1978. It has since undergone a major renovation, including the addition of the spectacular Margaritaville entertainment complex.

Nearly everyone at the conference can benefit from participation in the ING One-On-One Appointment Show, which will be held over two days at this year’s conference. It was created to place an emphasis on business relations between the media and golf companies, resorts, destinations and entrepreneurs.

Participating companies set up tabletop displays. Beginning at 8 a.m., private meetings will be held every 20 minutes, for five hours over two days – Monday and Tuesday mornings of the conference.

Another key element of the conference for exhibiting companies is the Demo Lab on Tuesday afternoon. Historic Atlantic City Country Club will host this year’s ING Demo Lab, where companies with golf equipment and training aids  set up on the range and putting green where attendees try the products first hand. Companies that have verbally committed to participating in the Demo Lab so far include Bridgestone, Freedom Golf Association, RadiusRoll Putters, Personal Golf Fan, Razor Golf, SNAG, and TaylorMade Golf. A total of nearly 20 companies are expected to take part.

Three golf tournaments will be conducted at Seaview Resort and Blue Heron Pines, including the ING WGAT National Qualifier.

The ING Conference is open to everyone in the golf industry and media. For more information, visit

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