Golf Travel Insurance – A Golf Holiday Must

Amateur and professional golfers should consider getting golf insurance if they play regularly. These days more people are taking liability seriously and your stray golf ball could cause you expensive out-of-pocket liabilities. An occasional slice could land into a condo unit with wall-to-wall glass and make you accountable to pay for the replacement of the glass at the very least. The problem could be compounded by injuries if someone is hit by your ball or cut by the broken glass.

If you travel a lot to play gold around the country or overseas, you should also get coverage. Golf travel insurance will cover your golf clubs if they get damaged or lost during the trip. If you travel frequently, you should also insure your other things such as jewelry, your laptop, and other valuables. You can get good rates if you get a number of policies from the same insurance company. Your golf travel policy may also cover you in case of medical emergencies while on a golf holiday.

The cost of golf insurance is considerably cheaper than the cost of what you could be liable for with just one bad hook that ends up in the parking lot. There are different types of insurance policies concerning the sport of golf. Some policies will cover damage to property, others will cover medical or hospital bills if you get injured on the fairway. A policy may also cover third-party injuries if your stray golf ball hits someone. If your ball hits someone in the head, he will likely need x-rays or an MRI.

Golf travel insurance can cover lost golf sets or damaged golf equipment during transit. It also covers injuries sustained by you or others while on a golf holiday. Just like a regular golf policy you have back home, it also covers public liability if your golf equipment causes damage to other people’s property. Your travel policy can also pay for your loss in case your clubs or other golf gear get stolen. Other things it may cover are damage to your rented equipment such as a golf cart.

Golf insurance policies can also pay for expenses for personal injuries like falling off from a golf cart, getting struck by lightning on the golf course or getting hit by a golf club aside from getting hit by the ball. It may sound a little bit far off but these things do happen more often than you think. The policy may also apply to injuries sustained at a practice driving range aside from accidents on the fairway. Your insurance plan may also cover problems concerning your accommodations abroad.

For example, if you golf gear is damaged from a flood that occurs in your golf resort, or if your golf set is stolen from your hotel room, your golf travel insurance will cover the damage or loss. Having yourself covered during a golf holiday can take away the stress of dealing with unfortunate incidents such as these in a foreign country. To avoid fraud, you should buy your policy from a reputable company that provides coverage on a domestic and international level.

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Marketing & Advertising – Aren’t They the Same Thing?

Remember the day when you first decided to start your business – you realised that you were a great plumber, lawyer etc, so why not. You had this image in your mind that all your clients would be lining up for you to complete their work. 12 months down the track things aren’t exactly as planned. This phenomenon is the basis of the E-Myth – that you got into business because you are good at what you do – this however doesn’t guarantee business success. One area in which most business owners could use assistance in is their marketing.

I believe before anyone can successfully market their business they need to have an understanding of what marketing actually is. Contrary to popular believe marketing and advertising aren’t the same! In fact marketing is the overall process, whilst advertising is only one form. Marketing is “the process of planning and executing the conception, pricing, promotion and distribution of ideas, goods, and services to create exchanges that satisfy individual and organizational goals” (Czinkota et al. 2002, p34).
The easiest way it has been explained to me was from Gloria Jean’s owner Peter Irvine. Peter describes marketing as a pie chart (see figure) with your brand as the central theme. Each piece of the pie makes up a component of marketing, in which advertising is one part. To make your marketing effective you need to have a central consistent message – your brand. This message is repackaged to appeal to each target audience, however across the board it is still the same. A great example of this is McDonalds – there current theme is “I’m lovin’ it” campaign where it can be applied to Happy Meals, McCafe etc. The pie chart breaks marketing into 15 different areas. Below I will briefly explain each area.

Branding is the key that holds all the marketing together, branding ensure that your business is portraying a consistent message. The American Marketing Association (AMA) defines a brand as a “name, term, sign, symbol or design or a combination of them intended to identify the goods and services of one seller or a group of sellers and to differentiate them from those of other sellers.” Most businesses think that their logo is their brand, whilst this is correct it goes further than that. Think about things such as; the way your team are presented, the way your customers received your goods or services or how your office looks.

Advertising is generally a paid one way communication channel, which identifies the owner of the advertisement. When people think of advertising they think of mass media – radio, TV, newsletters, magazines, movies and billboards. For small business owners examples include advertising in your local newspaper, delivering a “sales message” to your database or distributing a brochure through unaddressed mail delivery.

Positioning is how your customers perceive you in the market. The easiest example is with car manufacturers. Obviously a Mercedes is positioned differently to a Hyundai. Whilst they both serve the same purpose they are targeted at different markets and appeal to different people. They are positioned differently based on price, perceptions, quality, safety etc.

Many business owners wouldn’t consider price as part of their marketing mix, because if they are anything like my father he believes that you have to be the cheapest. If this was true, how come you have to wait 12 months for a new Ferrari, after you have given them a $20,000 deposit? Your pricing strategy is very important in determining how your business is positioned within the market. Decide if you want to be known for your quality, price or service because you have two, but not all three. For example in my business Mac Copy Design & Print, originally as a copy shop we used to get many customers walk in and want to spend 20 cents on photocopies, so we decided to increase our prices for smaller quantities which repositioned our company and hence we have transformed ourselves into one of the Gold Coast’s leading digital printers who specialise in short run (not too short) fast turnaround printing. Your price is very important in determining what type of customers you will attract.

Public Relations
Public Relations (PR) is any communication with your public – whether internal or external. PR is “the ethical and strategic management of communication and relationships in order to build and develop coalitions and policy, identify and manage issues and create and direct messages to achieve sound outcomes within a socially responsible framework.” PR is non sales related (advertising is sales related) communications. Most people associate PR with press releases and newspaper articles however it also includes information newsletters (articles with tips and hints for your clients), information direct mail (changes in pricing, terms & conditions etc), and website (media centre). The major benefits of PR is that the message is more trust by consumers as they believe that the company didn’t pay for it to be printed (newspaper articles) – hence a higher return on investment.

Location, Location, Location – you are probably thinking what does marketing have to do with location, plenty!! Haven’t you heard that McDonald’s isn’t in the hamburger business they are in the real estate business? Isn’t it funny how McDonald’s always have the primary locations while the other fast food stores are scrambling to get good positions nearby? On the Gold Coast there is a McDonald’s in Labrador on the Gold Coast Highway. You can see the famous Golden arches all the way back in Southport about 3km away. It helps if your customers are able to see where you are. As we can’t all get premium positions you need to ensure that you make it as easy as possible for your clients to get to you – ie. easy ordering, emails, parking and opening hours. Find out where your target marketing would ideally like you to be and be there.

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The Fed moves up its timeline for rate hikes as inflation rises

The Federal Reserve on Wednesday considerably raised its expectations for inflation this year and brought forward the time frame on when it will next raise interest rates.

However, the central bank gave no indication as to when it will begin cutting back on its aggressive bond-buying program, though Fed Chairman Jerome Powell acknowledged that officials discussed the issue at the meeting.

“You can think of this meeting that we had as the ‘talking about talking about’ meeting,” Powell said in a phrase that recalled a statement he made a year ago that the Fed wasn’t “thinking about thinking about raising rates.”

As expected, the policymaking Federal Open Market Committee unanimously left its benchmark short-term borrowing rate anchored near zero. But officials indicated that rate hikes could come as soon as 2023, after saying in March that it saw no increases until at least 2024. The so-called dot plot of individual member expectations pointed to two hikes in 2023.

Though the Fed raised its headline inflation expectation to 3.4%, a full percentage point higher than the March projection, the post-meeting statement continued to say that inflation pressures are “transitory.” The raised expectations come amid the biggest rise in consumer prices in about 13 years.

“This is not what the market expected,” said James McCann, deputy chief economist at Aberdeen Standard Investments. “The Fed is now signaling that rates will need to rise sooner and faster, with their forecast suggesting two hikes in 2023. This change in stance jars a little with the Fed’s recent claims that the recent spike in inflation is temporary.”

Markets reacted to the Fed news, with stocks falling and government bond yields higher as investors anticipated tighter Fed policy ahead, including the likelihood that the bond purchases will slow as soon as this year.

“If you’re going to get two rate hikes in 2023, you have to start tapering fairly soon to reach that goal,” said Kathy Jones, head of fixed income at Charles Schwab. “It takes maybe 10 months to a year to taper at a moderate pace. Then you’re looking at we need to start tapering maybe later this year, and if the economy continues to run a little bit hot, rate hikes sooner rather than later.”

Even with the raised forecast for this year, the committee still sees inflation trending to its 2% goal over the long run.

“Our expectation is these high inflation readings now will abate,” Powell said at his post-meeting news conference.

Powell also cautioned about reading too much into the dot-plot, saying it is “not a great forecaster of future rate moves. “Lift-off is well into the future,” he said.

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