BILLY MAYS HERE! – With New Taylormade Spy Pics

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Taylormade's Pitchman - Billy Mays

(*Note: When reading this first paragraph we recommend shouting out every single word just like good 'ol Billy Mays did.)

BILLY MAYS HERE!!! BACK AGAIN TODAY WITH THE GOLF CLUB MARKETING SPECIALIST TAYLORMADE GOLF AND ITS NEW SUPER IRON! Powered by the balls they call Rocket, activated by the power in your swing!  These top-secret, super-duper irons are mother nature approved and 100% safe on all golf courses!  It's unlike any iron you've ever hit!  You will absolutely be blown away by it performance and its fit!  It's going to replace the rescue! This iron is longer than any club ever produced!.  It will make your brights brighter, your whites...whiter! (Oh...sorry that's the script for OxyClean)  TAKE 2:  Long live the yet to be released prototype 2013 top-secret Super RocketBallz Iron! Taylormade...the golf club marketing specialist!

Sound like an ad Taylormade might put out?

taylormade 2013 super iron

All Hail...The Hype-O-Ganda

For those that don't know Billy Mays was the infomercial king and would have been an absolute perfect fit as a pitch man for Taylormade Golf if he was still alive (RIP Billy Mays).  Now some might think that I woke up and came in to work today just wanting to poke fun at Taylormade.  Actually a little bit of the opposite.  From a business perspective you have to admire what they do regarding their marketing/buzz building/hype-o-ganda. They do it better than any other golf company in the business....period!  Because in reality products from the different top-level OEM's are almost all the same when it comes to performance.  So really it just comes down to marketing.  Really, most these other companies should spend less of their money in R&D and more in hiring a kick-ass marketing firm.  Unfortunate but true.

Advice For Other Golf Companies

Many of the other large OEM's ask my opinion from time to time on why I think Taylormade is successful and what they could do differently.  Now this is obviously the simplified version. first advice...times have changed and they're not going back any time have to be more bold in your claims.  Customers and demographics have changed.  Don't believe this plays a role?  Look no further then the claims and quotes Taylormade has repeatedly put out over the last 5 years or so.  Some people hate these claims, some people love these claims, but the fact is that the majority of intelligent people turn to mush brains and believe these claims every year.  And that is what they are banking on...the majority...then they will influence the minority.  You know who I'm talking about...the guy that swore he wouldn't play a white driver...and somehow was miraculously converted.  Might even be you.

I would also suggest to companies hiring someone like a Priority Designs, they definitely helped Taylormade separate themselves from the rest of the pack.  And that is what it boils down to.  Why Taylormade is successful...once again in an overly simplified version...they have separated themselves from their other competitors who all make similarly performing products.  It's a shame to say this is one of the big puzzle pieces to success nowadays but it's the reality.  Now...don't get me wrong...Taylormade does a LOT of other things right...and all the little things as well...and one day we will talk about that...we have discussed it for some time here at work and I think you guys would enjoy the read.

(1) Part Apple (1) Part Sham-Wow = SUCCESS!

On the other hand after being in the industry for quite some time and seeing more than my share of so-called leaks of pics and hype-o-ganda often released to us directly from them in a non-direct way, you begin to almost laugh a little bit.  But while we laugh...potential customers smile.  For whatever reason this marketing tactic still works. But for how long?   It's part Apple part Sham-Wow infomercial...and we all know someone (me) who has fallen victim to one of those late night ads.  And this year and this release looks like it will be no different.  We already know what Taylormade is going to be releasing for the most part in 2013 and yesterday we got a look at one of those products (pictured above).

So why did it make me laugh and others here ask WTH!  Well...a combination of things.

  • First it was the actual iron itself...mostly the auto industry like camo badge to deceive the paparazzi...we will get to that.
  • Then it was the direct quote from TaylorMade Executive Vice President Sean Toulon.  Which by the way is odd don't you think, if it was a true spy pic and not one leaked by Taylormade themselves.  I mean who has a quote from a company rep if it's not a purposeful leak.  Gotta read between some of these lines.  While other companies are happy with just showing a couple pics and giving you the typical old-school type press release jargon to spill to the readers...Taylormade likes to take it about 10 steps further.  You know with something like this, "What TaylorMade is about to do will completely change how TOUR players look at an iron." This type statement sound familiar to you?  It should...because it's not much different then 2011,2010, 2009 or hell just about any year of late from Taylormade.
  • Then what has almost become the obligatory ballzy type embellishment statement from one of their staffers about the new product after testing it for the first time.  Like this, "It's unlike any iron I have ever hit. Blown away by the performance.  The rescue is out." said Sean O'Hair.
  • And lastly the camo badge in the cavity similar to what the auto industry purposely uses on prototype cars so they can deceive the most advanced auto focus system on a camera. The truth is that car companies deliberately make their cars look that way so that when and if these prototype cars get snapped by a photographer, certain incriminating details are not visible.  Useful on a car with a much larger canvas, but in my opinion just another slick marketing trick from Taylormade on a simple cavity badge to create more mystique and allure.

Has Taylormade Done It Again?

So...has Taylormade done it again?  Do you think this new iron will build as much hype as ones in years past?  Or do you think like many Apple customers...consumers are starting to get tired of the what some would call outlandish claims?  How long do you think this type of marketing tactic will work before it turns off more golfers then it attracts?  It sure seems to walk a fine line between brilliance and total absurdity in my opinion.  But thats just me...I want to hear what your thoughts are.

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{ 70 comments… read them below or add one }

J. Frank October 20, 2012 at 9:28 am

As I look at the picture if you look at the hosel of the irons it appears there is writing similar to the adjustable RBZ woods and R11 product…I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if you see the worlds first set of adjustable irons for loft & lie…not sure how they would attach but if you look closely at one of the irons you will see the tell tale signs not to mention the speed slot on sole that will promote higher launch….This iron will garner a BIG MARKET share…..

PGA pro in Montana and Taylor Made staff member.


RT October 9, 2012 at 7:25 am

Trick or Treat?
I think -“trick”


Log7 October 7, 2012 at 2:38 pm

You guys kill me. You go into get fit. Hit the TM the best and you still wouldn’t buy it. Makes no logical sense at all. Rule out a company because they make a white driver or there marketing plan actually works. Unbelievable


Davide Mattucci October 8, 2012 at 11:56 am

Its the hater’s way. They love to bash, but if the product actually works, which it obviously does or it wouldn’t continue to sell with or without the marketing, they backtrack and say the marketing is the turn off. Then when the next product is marketed, they say its because the products are junk. If Taylormade, or any other brand’s equipment was “junk” or “garbage” or “cheaply made crap” it wouldn’t continue to sell at the rate that it does. Consumers aren’t going to continue handing over their money for products that don’t work, not when there’s so much competition. Every brand is out to make money, don’t hate those that are far better at it than others…


yo October 6, 2012 at 5:41 am

i like the looks, the head looks sligtly larger but still the sole looks not that wide, so the larger head will give you some confident… like the ci11


Ron October 5, 2012 at 4:10 pm

David its what this company does they give the quality clubs to the pros and over charge people fr the cheap made clubs with cheap shafts with these woods and give the public cheap ass forgings. Companies like that deserve to go under.


Lawrence Kowalski October 5, 2012 at 3:35 pm

As a result of taylormade marketing, I don’t have a single Taylormade product in my bag. Hype an BS are just that.


Davide Mattucci October 5, 2012 at 11:12 am

Its hysterical to watch all the hate just continue to propel the conversation forward. For guys who “don’t really care” about Taylormade, there are so many who insist on posting just to bash them. You really only see that sort of reaction to successful brands who innovate, leaving the choice to the consumer to come along, or hate them. Its like the iPhone commercials that bash the iPhone because its successful…


Chris October 5, 2012 at 10:49 am

Nobody has mentioned that Sean O’Hair’s umbrella hits the ball four-hundred-yards….


Fozcycle October 5, 2012 at 10:44 am

They don’t look very special to me……except for the zebra stripes to hide yhe actual backside of the irons…….


John Barry October 5, 2012 at 6:09 am

Forget the clubs, I want the caddy!!! Man that car looks sweet!!


Ron October 5, 2012 at 5:18 am

PJ Your right I accidently did mispell some words but you know how it is , guys are better with numbers and woman are better with letters they say is fact. lol


John Handegard October 4, 2012 at 7:19 pm

Looks quite a bit like the old Hogan Apex Edge, which are great irons. And of course the lofts will be strong and why not? Many players like to mention how far their new 6 iron goes. I’ll give them a test.


atm October 4, 2012 at 6:06 pm

Titleist does the same thing with golf balls….(paying more pros than anybody else) Yet everyone wants to bring up Taylormade for paying pro’s obscure amounts…No one gets to be #1 on tour without paying a lot of money (except maybe adams in hybrid count), and if the product wasn’t good for them they wouldn’t play it, I know a few tour pros that broke their contracts with Taylormade because they couldn’t find a driver that worked for them…Who cares if they are paying their expenses for the week they are playing for a lot more than that every week ($3000-$5000 grand might be a good payday for these guys for teeing up the driver but it not worth costing them a million plus for first place….and by the way I play ping products…so I am not involved either way.


Ron October 4, 2012 at 5:06 pm

I see so many people in hear talking about TM because their interest was built from their BS advertisement, and yet people still fall for this crap TM throws at them everytime, its so funny when you think abt it. This is what TM preys upon gullable people who buy all this stuff up,shame on you. Thats why this company can afford to sign 75 percent of the pros on tour and yet they still cant wait to see what interest trick TM has next up their sleeve. Every non staffer thats using TM woods on tour are being paid big bucks to use em and by knowing that if people see non TM staffers using their product out their it will make people think OH HE IS NOT WITH TM AND HE IS STILL USING THEIR DRIVERS THAT MEANS THEY MUST BE GOOD. Thats how they also hook people in, brilliant move by TM I will give em that, they are sneaky . I always thought their are alot of intelligent people out their but TM makes them look like the dummest people in the world and they never learn.


PJ October 4, 2012 at 8:34 pm

Let’s not talk about how dumb people in (and I quote you) “hear”, when you meant “HERE”, and you wrote “their are alot of intelligent people out their”, in both instances, you should have typed “there”.
Not really trying to give an English lesson, but if you want to talk about how the “dummest” people (should be “dumbest”, btw) only fall for this – let he who is without sin, cast the first stone. Or did you mean you have a ball full of TM gear?


Joe Mama October 4, 2012 at 3:18 pm

I’m waiting for next year’s Super-Duper irons.
Or maybe I’ll wait for the 2014 Ultra Irons.
Or the 2015 We’ve Exhausted Superlatives Irons…

Just kidding. I play the r11 iron. and the r9 before that. There really was improvement between the two models.

Before that, I was a Callaway irons guy, but I got off the X-go-round at 22 when I noticed that they were just changing finishes/badges/colors year-to-year.


PJ October 4, 2012 at 2:49 pm

Wow…a lot of TM haters. Not sure why??
They build quality clubs and they market them fantastically.
Innovation starts at TaylorMade. Sure they bought up Adams and took their speedslot technology, but aside from that…
TM invented the metal driver, hybrid, customizable drivers and went white…FIRST!
If you want to throw stones, aim at the other companies who copied them!

But, like most successful companies, they have critics…but the fact that you read this article and commented, the TM buzz continues! Mwwaahh..haaaa…haaa!
Yes, I play TM clubs……….and Mizuno’s and Titlelist and use Callaway golf balls.
Find what works best for you and your game and go play them!! Staying away from an entire product line because they have ‘white’ drivers…makes me shake my head in disbelief.
But, in the end – don’t really care one way or the other. To each his (or her) own.


Tyk October 4, 2012 at 1:59 pm

I didn’t think it was “camo tape” I just figured that was the irons!


toppakrat October 4, 2012 at 1:00 pm

I would rank these right up there with the ZEVO and Cleveland VAS but not quite as good as the PING ZING 2.


Oldplayer October 4, 2012 at 12:57 pm

Makes you sort of yearn for the old Taylormade. They have made some truely beautiful and classic irons in the past. The 300’s, Rac TPMB. Such great performers. Even the Rac LT’s were great cast cavities that were a very solid iron for mid cappers.
Now I appreciate that times change, and the show must go on. Marketing and hype does sell equipment, but where is the class and classic beauty??
Surely there are enough golfers out there who appreciate classic design. It never goes out of fashion. Why the crass gimicky stuff that in my view lowers the credibility of the whole company. TM has made some serious contributions to the archive of superb golf equipment in past decades. Now this!?!?
The managment need to take a good hard look at themselves before they become a complete laughing stock.
There are many of us I’m sure that love the old TM. They once had the ethos of Hogan. To build the best equipment they could with no compromise. If you make high quality stuff it sells itself. Yeah I know Hogan is gone and TM live on. Dosen’t mean we need to have junk peddled to us when what a lot of equipment nuts want is high quality, classic design.


Davide Mattucci October 4, 2012 at 12:41 pm

Outlandish claims aside, wasn’t it you, or another author for the site, that had a green TMaG logo shaved in your head after hitting the RBZ fairway even longer than the claims? Call me a fanboy or whatever you’d like, but legally speaking they can’t make the outlandish claims without data that supports it. You just can’t, or you would be sued. Just ask Reebok (see toning debacle). I don’t think outlandish claims have anything to do with their success. I think its a combination of intelligent marketing, tour validation, good product, and stellar service which I’ve experienced first hand in having dealt with an issue earlier this year with a club I purchased. But everyone, by all means hate on. As we all know, Titleist, Ping, and Mizuno are only out to provide the world with goodness, not to make profit, right?


mygolfspy October 4, 2012 at 12:48 pm

No I was not the author of that article that was GolfSpy T. And no I do not believe the claim they made last year and I am not sure T would either. If you go back and read that article you will see that the way I would have preferred it to be tested and how the claim was written was not how they tested things at Taylormade. But at the end of the day yes he got a haircut, but one I do not think was fitting.


Davide Mattucci October 4, 2012 at 1:10 pm

I don’t think whether or not you, or any one individual, believes the claims is really critical. From a business and legal perspective there was data there to support it or their legal team wouldn’t have approved using the soundbite, period. That being said, regardless of tee-up money or not, the wood is everywhere on tour, which is ultimately what I think helps drive their marketing. If the product was garbage, it wouldn’t continue to sell. Marketing can only take a brand so far…


mygolfspy October 4, 2012 at 1:17 pm

No you are absolutely right…it doesn’t matter what I think…but you asked. And you are right their legal team would not have approved it. But the claim itself is where the problem was and if they so believed in it then my question to TM is why didn’t you test us like that when we got there. They custom fit the Rocketballz and optimized it and the previous model that was in the claim was off the rack. That’s the facts. If you have the rocketballz to make the claim and we question it and fly us out there then have the rocketballz to put your money where your mouth was. All I am saying. And like we said none of this stuff is garbage really it all performs very similarly to all the other large OEM’s.


Davide Mattucci October 4, 2012 at 1:51 pm

I totally agree with you. I don’t think there’s anyone magic club or brand so vastly superior to another. In this day and age of technology, performance gains are so marginally slim that brands need to differentiate by other means. To that end, Taylormade by far does a better job than any other brand in doing just that. From white, to product naming, to tour adoption. At the end of the day any PGA pro could play clubs from any OEM they wanted and still be that caliber of player. I just find it completely idiotic when someone slams one brand’s product (not saying you by any means) for being garbage when in fact its as adequate as anything else on the market.


gunmetal October 4, 2012 at 12:17 pm

Looks like someone threw up on those irons.


Steve Loomis October 4, 2012 at 11:18 am

Does anyone remember the Wilson Reflex 1974??


JesseV October 4, 2012 at 9:06 am

Now you too can hit your 9 iron 300 yards. Of course your 9 iron is now a 3 iron loft with a 7 iron length shaft. And our rocket ballz are now juiced to fly farther and straighter then a spaceship traveling to the moon.

Whats said is there are folks who will buy into the hyperbole.


Clayton October 4, 2012 at 9:04 am

I, for one, am very excited to get my hands on these irons. I’ve been playing the R9 TP for 3 seasons now and while they are fantastic sticks, I am looking for something new. As long as the 3-4-5 irons are as easy to hit and have at the MOST the same offset as the R9 TP, AND they are STAINLESS STEEL, I’m in for a set. Stainless is a must up here in the PNW unless you like rusty grooves. Actually, TaylorMade, can I have a set with the camo on them?


frank October 4, 2012 at 8:40 am

Interesting. I for one will not knock anything again from TMAG until I hit them. did so with RBZ and have half a bag full. as for the Irons i owuld prefer one more club in distance but if it means my gaps are nullified then i am screwed. my miuras don’t seem to be leaving me anytime soon but since there clubs have less of an offset (or so it looks) and the 3-7 have the slot for the trampoline effect they are very different to say the least.

I am assuming the patent on the rocket fuel (OR WHATEVER IT WAS) name will be hitting the market with these clubs no?


GolfSpy T October 4, 2012 at 8:43 am

Nobody at TaylorMade would comment I’m guessing, but all signs point to a RocketFuel line (likely next gen RBZ), and R11(s) replacements hitting the market shortly after the PGA show.


joro October 4, 2012 at 8:51 am

RocketFuel, what a stupid name. How about “Mission to Mars” or” Soundbarrier Breaker”, or maybe something simple like Rocket, or is that not catchy enough.


frank October 4, 2012 at 11:00 am

we all thought rocketballz was stupid too correct? how’d that work out for them I would want that kind of stupidity every day of the week!


joro October 4, 2012 at 8:37 am

Reading the comments I have laugh. I read some who love TM and some who do not, but the fact is TM is all over the place, so they must by doing something right. I have a club repair shop and teach at a course in San Diego and everyone making the turn and finishing their round goes by me shop, and guess what is in the majority of the bags, Taylor Made.

The bags are full of those white covers. So they must like them. Iron are still the majority with a lot of Callaways, Pings, Titleist, and others in that order, but TM rules. Same with lessons, most of them have TMs in their bags. Fact is just hype or not, they do work.

And about distance, lofts are strong and people hit it longer, sure it is a sham, but so what.


Craig October 4, 2012 at 8:13 am

Looks like the Callaway legacy with a slot cut into the bottom looks ok. Big cavity but not as clunky as some. Not bad.


Lee H. October 4, 2012 at 8:10 am

Taylormade has already got everyone talking about their products. Regardless if it is good or bad talk, they have already started the conversations that will lead people to at least try out their products. Their initial maketing process has already worked. Only the sales #’s will truly prove whether or not the products are successful. Most likely, they have done it again. Create the interest that creates the sales.


GolfSpy T October 4, 2012 at 8:41 am

Couldn’t have said it better myself. Remove all the the acronyms, buzzwords, and hyperbole, and what you’re left with is a company whose business is to sell golf clubs. Whatever the means and the marketing happen to be, nobody does it better.


frank October 4, 2012 at 11:17 am

AGREED!!!!!!! TM has me looking into these irons already


Rjames October 4, 2012 at 8:09 am

The entire rbz line is rather silly to me. How can Taylormade simply take a 21 degree iron and stamp a number 4 on the bottom and sell this a new set that is the longest irons yet?

Are we that silly? what next year? the new R13SS 48 inch long 460cc pitching wedge that is 250 yards longer than any other PW on the market!

All so we will line up and pay $1000 for the new gear.

So my guess is that there are many players who will try and buy ability rather then spend money on lessons and practice, so yes they have done it again.


Ryan October 5, 2012 at 7:37 pm

hahah 250 yards longer than any PW. GOLDEN!!


Ryu K October 4, 2012 at 5:19 am

Is that line on the iron like the speed pocket from the rbz woods? looks like a yes to me! The pattern on the cavity looks like it was drawn with a permanent marker! haha



Yohanan October 3, 2012 at 10:59 pm

My 2010 (black carbon fiber) Burner 3 & 4 Hybrid WILL NOT be replaced anytime soon.

Sorry Tmag.

I demo dayed the rbz right before my jpx fitting in june.

No comparison. Even with the same KBS Tour shafts.

The mizzys go farther, fly straighter and i can work the ball left or right.



Joe October 3, 2012 at 9:21 pm

I just wish companies would stop making the lofts stronger and stronger, leaving bigger and bigger gaps between the short irons. Three irons used to be too hard to hit for the weekend duffer. Nowadays the four iron is stronger than the old three iron lofts. I recall seeing Nick Faldo in a video in which he went on about how he was hitting the new TaylorMade Burner iron way further than his previous Mizuno iron, acting as if this was a surprise to him. Well duh! When the TM’s loft is a club stronger than a corresponding Mizuno forged iron, things like that are gonna happen. Let’s see if it’s still true when the club is the same loft and length, regardless of the number stamped on the sole of the iron.


GolfSpy T October 4, 2012 at 5:59 am

You’re 100% right, but unfortunately distance still sells.

Incidentally, I’m told from guys who would actually know, this isn’t unique to amateurs. Even if they don’t brand it as much the same, guys on tour want more distance out of their irons too. That’s not to say, player X wants 15 more yards. It’s more subtle, and it’s all about the ego.

If two tour players have roughly the same shot, and one guy is hitting an 8, while the other is hitting a 7, even on tour it seems, the guy with the 7 in his hands sometimes will go to his sponsor and ask them why his 8-iron doesn’t go farther.

It sounds absolutely ridiculous…we’re talking about the best golfers in the world…guys who know better…and yet I’ve been told it happens more often then you’d think.


joro October 4, 2012 at 8:46 am

Golfspy T, Longer is better, faster is better says the Automobile ads as they show a Caddy drifting around a corner, it is all about speed in that business. Golf is the same, it is all about distance. I would challenge you to find an ad for Golfclubs that doesn’t emphasize distance. Sometimes they talk control but the basic thing is distance.

You mention the Pros, yes, a lot of them have their lofts jacked up, why not, and what is the difference anyway, is their a rule that a certain number is supposed to be a certain loft. I have been in the business for over 50 years and have never seen a rule that says that.

At my age, 73 it feels good to still hit a 7 iron 140 even though it is actually a 6 loft and many years ago when I competed it was a 5 iron, but it does feel good to be fooled, lol.
There has been talk lately of putting lofts on Irons in place of #s, and I think that is a good idea. But the reality is it is all about distance with a certain club. I know of Tour Pros who have their 3 wood jacked to 12 degrees, no wonder they hit them 275.


frank October 4, 2012 at 11:13 am


I don’t think the concept (less loft greater distance) is what people are getting at it’s the marketing of distance when the lofts have been adjusted. Tour pros, although we marvel at the dsitnaces they hit the ball, do have some juiced lofts maybe a degre or two. they do however have the “SPEED” you mention to hit the ball that much further. that and someof the adverised distances on TV are fudged.

The majority of the OEMs are producing irons attached to the tour players for marketing dsitance yet the pros are playing different irons. Mizuno doesn’t show Luke wiht the JPX models even though the JPX have 2 degree strong in GI Irons and 1 degree in the Pro model.

I agree for certain demographics this ego booster is great and it could even add confidence as the hybrids and three RBZ have done to my game. let’s jsut go to lofts and been done with the numbers. it would make for great commentary from mccord and feherty!!!!!!!!


Cobra nut October 3, 2012 at 9:11 pm

And certain members said the new Cobra Iron were ugly?? ROFL my grandchild could have have designed this with her color crayons or some vomit, pure ugly. IMO.


GolfSpy T October 4, 2012 at 5:55 am

Now now…let’s see what these look like when they hit retail. The stripes…they’re not part of the final product. They’re there to hid the final design.


TwoSolitudes October 4, 2012 at 9:55 am

or are they…….


keith October 3, 2012 at 8:26 pm

They look HUGE.Even the long irons seem to have a deep face.Maybe the new Lynx Parallax?


Mike French October 3, 2012 at 6:33 pm

The long irons remind me of Wilson Reflex irons of the mid 70’s. They advertised “You can play with them or against them!” The large majority of golfers chose to play against them as I am sure they will not play these irons today.


Skihippy October 3, 2012 at 4:43 pm

Since when did golf have anything to do with zebra’s sorry if I am confused but I don’t play out of the sand much and I must be missing the perception that TM has anything has to do with a African Zebra!!! Complete BS I will keep my hybrid…


Gus October 3, 2012 at 4:39 pm

Simple – TM parts are accessible – I can go buy an authentic tip from Golfsmith and put it on my favorite shaft. Other OEMs won’t do it so it gets expensive for DIY club makers like myself.

And the marketing isn’t just all hype – TM products are really easy to hit, especially their woods. The distance claims by strengthening lofts, longer shafts, bigger heads, etc are done by every OEM.

And before you dog on TM for taking a 3 iron and stamp a 4 on the bottom – give them credit for making an easy to hit “3” iron!


GolfSpy T October 4, 2012 at 5:52 am

Gus – Worth pointing out, authentic Callaway parts (tips and grips) are also available at retail, but it absolutely should also be pointed out that TaylorMade was the first, and for quite some time, the only OEM to embrace the consumer-friendly position.

I would also argue that in EVERY club category there are others that are absolutely easier to hit (most produced by either PING or Adams (now part of the TMaG family). What TaylorMade does as well, if not better than anyone else is extend the middle. What I mean by that is that, until you start talking about a muscle back iron, nearly every club in their lineup has wide-ranging market appeal.

Many of the clubs in their line-up appeal to both lower and high handicap golfers (and everyone in between). The target demographic for nearly everything is nearly everyone. And within the last 2-3 years, they’ve done this without creating a surplus of iron models which can lead to consumer confusion.

I won’t give anyone any credit for Calling a 4 iron a 3 iron and claiming it’s easier to hit. TaylorMade isn’t alone here, but placing a premium on iron distance is stupid, and ultimately hurts golfers.

Nearly anyone who has ever broken 90 has figured out that what matters most in this game is what happens from 100 yards in. What this leaves is the guy who has got a 50° or even 48° gap wedge that he can hit 120 yards, and room for only two more clubs in the bag (excluding the putter). Most sand wedge lofts (thankfully) haven’t caught up with the rest of the distance driven culture, so if you accept the average guy hits a sand wedge +/- 90 yards, you’re left with a 30 yard gap, precisely where manageable gaps are most important.

As golfers, almost all of us are doing it wrong…and it’s because of the emphasis we place on distance. If you want to hit the ball farther than your friends…yeah…buy a driver, and the longest fairway woods and hybrids you can find. Absolutely pair them with these type of irons, and hit those really far too.

Of course, if you actually want to improve your scores substantially, I’d suggest you find a putter that fits your stroke. Adopt the SCOR model for your short game. Start with your wedges, and work your way to the top of the bag, while making sure gaps are consistent and manageable. And NEVER worry about hitting your irons so much as a yard longer. There’s a reason why you carry 8 of them.


kris October 3, 2012 at 4:11 pm

It does look like a slot behind the face on the long irons. Interesting, I was waiting or that. Otherwise look very similar to the R11 irons (which if I could afford I’d have in the bag).

Am I the only one to actually want my clubs to have the camo pattern? I like it.


Curtis October 4, 2012 at 8:37 am

Camo pattern is fine. Black and white is not.

I like the Cobra AMP cell Spiderman Pattern because it has color. Give these some splashy colors, or even drab colors (military camo) and I might like them. But black and white? Not so much a fan.


Playtheblues October 9, 2012 at 9:04 am


If you are a standard loft and lie guy, go to the TM used clubs as well as Callaway, they have R11 irons for good prices. Global Golf is another good one. Bought a set of Very Good AP2 3-PW for $400. They were almost mint save for the 9 and Wedge.


Curtis October 3, 2012 at 2:04 pm

So that’s where the replacement NFL refs ended up…


GolfSpy T October 3, 2012 at 12:15 pm

There simply must be an eventual end to all this distance-based marketing, but it isn’t anywhere in sight. It really doesn’t matter. Eventually the golf companies will have to adapt to whatever the next generation of golf equipment marketing demands. Ask yourself this; which company is in the best position to change gears and adapt when market forces dictate?

I’ll give you a hint, it’s the same guys whose name in on the zebra print iron up there (incidentally, that IS NOT the final design, but rather serves to hide the final design).

We test a lot of equipment each and every year, and as X hinted in the article, by my estimation 90% of it is mostly the same. I’ll say 6%-7% truly outperform in any category, and 3%-4% of big OEM gear is slightly (only slightly) sub-par.

So how can one company dominate in market like that? The answer is really two-fold. First a company needs to understand and adapt to a shifting pyramid of influence. The last 2 years, which likely have provided TaylorMade with the most lopsided domination of the golf equipment market in history, illustrate just how well TaylorMade understands their marketplace. Yes…they’re no doubt going to lose some people (even piss them off) with over-the-top campaigns like this, but…as long as you gain more than you lose (and for now they are), the net gains can be tremendous. Think about it…a white driver became the hottest selling driver since basically ever…and then did even better with something called “RocketBallz”.

The second piece of the equations involves having the team in place to leverage that understanding and execute a marketing strategy that takes full advantage of whatever it is you understand to be true about your market. Although sometimes I really do wonder, I’m fairly confident that TaylorMade isn’t the only golf company that understands what’s going on from the consumer perspective, but thus far they’ve been the only ones with enough organizational cohesion to reap the maximum benefit.


Nigel October 3, 2012 at 12:12 pm

The TM marketing hyperbola is flat out ridiculous, well, other than the fact that it works. Their equipment is also pretty good, on the whole. It`s no better than anyone else`s, of course, but it`s no worse either. They create buzz and they sell a ton of stuff, however much I personally don`t like the way they do it. That sounds like a successful company. I do not want to play anything TM, especially anything white. However, I am currently using a TM white driver because it works the best for me. I`m ashamed of myself, but not enough to use something else :-)……….


manbearpig October 3, 2012 at 11:44 am

Id it just the camera angle or do those irons heads look big?


Pkielwa October 3, 2012 at 11:34 am

I was turned off by TM as soon as they went white. I’ve played a number of their drivers and irons due to the fact I had been coaching and was able to purchase through a program. I was not overly impressed by the equipment, and what they put out just looks and feels cheap. So looks like they’re going with the cutout like in the bottom of the RBZ stuff, and copying Adams… I won’t fall for it again! When input their stuff on a monitor against other OEMs, none of the claims hold-up. Well, other than claims about numbers of tour guys playing their drivers (they’re PAID to play the stuff)! I dare to have TM bring someone like me to their testing site and build me stuff that fits their claims! I dare them! They know I can take what they build me and go to Carlsbad and have Callaway build me something just as good.
Yep, I agree. More talk than substance. But, it IS working. People are buying/believing. And that’s all TM cares about anyway…


Playtheblues October 9, 2012 at 9:00 am

TM owns ADAMS by the way


Brian October 3, 2012 at 11:29 am

Yeah….a sound slot in some of the irons? 3-6 have sole cuts, 7-9 don’t?

Just show me the new forged cavities from Callaway please!!!!!


JBones October 3, 2012 at 11:26 am

That “camo” is just flat out ridiculous.


Playtheblues October 4, 2012 at 9:30 am

If you hit those and they were 5-10 yards longer than your present set, Camo or not. they’d be in your bag in a heartbeat.


TwoSolitudes October 4, 2012 at 9:54 am

Yeah! Because eventually I want to have a 3 wood, then a 7 iron that goes 220 yards, down to a 170 yard PW and then about 5 Gap wedges. It’s the future of golf!… or maybe not…


Peter Ciambrone October 4, 2012 at 4:06 pm

Keep drinking the TMAG koolaid


TwoSolitudes October 3, 2012 at 11:21 am

Is that a speed groove/pocket carved into in the long irons? I am in the total absurdity camp.


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