Report: PGA Tour paying $40m bonus to "most influential pros"

Golfer Silhouette

It's not quite golf's equivalent of the European Super League - but it's not a million miles removed from it either.

It is understood that the PGA Tour has launched a lucrative new bonus structure for its players that will reward the game's top players for driving fan and sponsor engagement. 

A report by Golfweek says that the scheme, called the Player Impact Program, will see $40million distributed amongst ten players each year in recognition of the "value they add to the overall product" and not just their on-course results. 

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A tour spokesperson told Golfweek that the scheme launched on January 1 this year in order to “recognise and reward players who positively move the needle.”

The player who leads the standings at the end of the year will receive a whopping $8million bonus. 

According to Golfweek, the full list of metrics by which players will be judged include their position on the season-ending FedEx Cup points list as well as their popularity in Google Search and their Nielsen Brand Exposure rating, which places a value on the exposure a player delivers to sponsors though the minutes they are featured on broadcasts.

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Also taken into account will be players' Q Rating, which measures the familiarity and appeal of a player’s brand; their MVP Index rating, which calibrates the value of the engagement a player drives across social and digital channels; and their Meltwater Mentions, or the frequency with which a player generates coverage across a range of media platforms.

These metrics will then be turned into a so-called 'Impact Score' using a tour algorithm. Players will be ranked by their 'Impact Score' in order to determine the bonus amount due. 

It has been reported that this scheme has been devised in a bid to kill off the Premier Golf League, a rival tour bankrolled by Saudi Arabia which has tried to entice some of the game's biggest names away from the PGA Tour.

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