Sean Callanan chats with Kevin Bain from The R&A about challenges of providing technology on links courses and the amount of testing required to prepare for the traffic that TheOpen.com each year when the world tunes in to see the best golfers in action each July.

On this podcast you'll learn about:

  • A brief background about The R&A and The Open
  • How the digital landscape looked in the early days at The Open
  • The challenges of rolling out new technology and digital advancements in the link courses
  • How they are producing content for golf fans to consume
  • Redeveloping The Open website and mobile app
  • How The Open are innovating their digital platforms
Learn more about golf and tech with Kevin Bain

Listen to Kevin Bain on Sports Geek

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Our fave quote from Kevin Bain interview

The key role in providing public Wifi is making sure that our fans can stay connected whilst at The Open.

Kevin Bain

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About Kevin Bain

With a degree in computing, Kevin Bain spent almost a decade in the IT field working with oil and consulting companies. It then took him a move to St Andrews that opened the opportunity for him to get a role at The R&A. During his early years in the company, he led The R&A in developing their digital infrastructures bringing in Wifi connectivity in the courses, developing their websites and mobile app development to The Open.

He is now the head of data and digital infrastructures and he is also involved in developing digital and social media strategies, managing project and operational budgets and overseeing teams of designers, application developers and third party agencies.

The R&A is golf's governing body and organiser of golf’s oldest and most international Major championship The Open.

Resources from the podcast

Highlights from podcast with Kevin Bain

4:10 A brief introduction about The R&A

5:02 Kevin Bain chats about his role as Head of Data and Digital Infrastructure at The R&A

6:08 How the digital landscape looked like in the early years at The R&A

7:04 How mobile phones and Wifi connectivity changed the infrastructure requirements at The Open

8:30 The challenges in rolling out digital advancements in the links courses

13:21 Kevin on how they tackle the challenges that different parts of the business require

14:50 Redeveloping the rules of golf

15:51 How they manage the traffic around The Open Championship days

18:18 Redeveloping The Open app for their One Club membership program

20:51 How they are ensuring the production of relevant content for golf fans to consume

32:13 Kevin on finding inspiration in the development of The Open website

35:56 Sports Geek Closing Five

42:29 Join the Sports Geek Nation now. As a Sports Geek listener you can go to SportsGeekNation.com/connected to join.

42:47 Sean will be doing the Digital to Dollars workshop at the National Sports Forum on Feb 12. Go to sportsgeekhq.com/nsf and use the code SPORTSGEEK100 to get a $100 off on registration as a podcast listener

Visit digitaltodollars.com to learn more about the Digital to Dollars workshop

46:18 Support Gravitas at the OPL Season of the League of Legends. Go to gravitas.gg for more info

Some tweets you may have missed:

Excited to see how The Open goes in July

Good to have a lookback on some firsts

Something to think about this year

Beautiful golf course. Great set up by The R&A

Join Sports Geek Nation for AMA sessions

The April Sports Geek Nation Ask Me Anything schedule has been released.

Taking the Sports Geek Nation AMA stage this week is Edward Ernst from Breeders’ Cup will be answering your questions in the #ama channel in the Sports Geek Nation Slack.

Edward spent most of his career in the market intelligence arena working with B2B and B2C executives to define strategies for future growth. He has worked on the business development side for Hanover Research, HelloSponsor, Emerging Strategy and JJA Search.

In 2018, Edward joined Breeder’s Cup where he works on developing new sponsors and establishing corporate partnerships.

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Sports Geek Nation AMA with Edward Ernst

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