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Goodbye Scorecard, Hello FORE

Goodbye Scorecard, Hello FORE

FORE is a social golf scorecard app that promises to change how people track their golf game, and connect with other golfers. The FORE Kickstarter Campaign launched Wednesday, October 9th, aims to raise $15,000 to finish app development, integrate a rewards program and polish digital material. We talked to FORE’s founders, Chris and Shawn Busteed, about FORE and what it will offer golfers. The Busteed brothers were raised in a golfing family. Their father, Pat, was a golf coach at their high school and it remains a shared family passion that brings them all together.

 

 

The premise is simple: when golfers track their scores using FORE they open up a myriad of benefits that are not available when using pencil and paper. “Current golf applications lack simplicity. FORE will provide an easy-to-use platform for the 28 million golfers in the United States interested in enjoying their game on a social level, while helping them to drop a few shots,” stated Chris Busteed, co-founder of FORE. “Golf can be a frustrating sport; but our goal is to provide stats and accomplishments to help golfers remain positive about their game and see results over time. FORE also offers a unique business opportunity for golf courses to interact with current players and drive them in to their pro shops, pubs, etc.”

Simple Tracking = Great Benefits

The first thing you notice when you see FORE is the simplicity of its design. For each hole there is a single control—a large dial that allows the user to keep track after each stroke, all at once after each hole, or when the round is complete. “We looked at the golf market and found that there was nothing out there that offered simplicity for golfers who wanted to switch from pen and paper score tracking to digital tracking,” Shawn Busteed co-founder of FORE told us. “Entering your golf scores needs to be an easy process or people won’t use it. Most golf apps make the mistake of overcomplicating the entry of people’s scores.”

Once users enter their score, FORE offers four main benefits:

1) It allows users to track their scores and see their stats over time

2) It offers ongoing encouragement in the form of achievements

3) It lets golfers see how everyone else on the course is playing that day

4) It offers rewards to golfers for playing on the courses they love.

Stats
FORE tracks and maintains basic golf stats that allow a golfer to see a graph of all their rounds and counts of birdies, pars, and rounds played over time. The FORE team is also working on an elegant way to include more advanced stats, such as putt counts and drives to fairway ratios. FORE also builds out profiles of the golfers you play with, allowing you to track scores and rank the performance of your friends, even if they aren’t using the app.  Then, if those players start using FORE later, they have the ability to accept those previous scores.

Accomplishments
Golf is a frustrating sport and FORE is part therapist and part cheerleader, letting golfers know that they are indeed improving. “We want to acknowledge players at all levels so we’ve created a wide range of accomplishments,” Shawn told us. “FORE recognizes people for just getting out and playing, as well as doing great things on the course.” Achievements range from “The Birdie Badge” that is rewarded after a player gets 5 birdies, to the “Fields Best Badge,” when someone has the best score on the course that day.

Real World Prizes
FORE plans to partner with golf courses to provide real world rewards for people playing. These include free driving range balls, pitchers of beer or soda at the golf course bars and pubs, discounts at the pro shop, or even golf getaway packages. The incentive for courses to give small rewards to golfers is obvious—these rewards are a low cost way to build course loyalty, drive repeat business, and increase food and beverage sales.

Tournaments and Leagues
FORE offers great functionality for groups that want to track a large number of golfers, such as leagues, tournaments, or even for golf coaches. By providing a simple solution that requires little setup, FORE can change the way that these events are administered and make them more fun for the players at the same time.

 

The Kickstarter campaign underway now is slated to run for 5 weeks. Kickstarter backers will be considered “early adopters” and granted early access to FORE, estimated to officially launch by April 2014. Backers can commit starting at the “Good Friend Level” all the way to the “Your Own FORE Badge” option. The first version of the app will be for iPhone, but iPad and Android versions will follow.


 

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