Golf Genie a winner for Atlanta entrepreneur

Atlanta entrepreneur Kristian Traylor is capitalizing on such moments. He developed the Golf Genie Tee to Green pocket guide and mobile app: Just pull it out or open it up, flip to the advanced shots section, then read and heed. The advice for that tricky sidehill shot? Use full length of the club; tilt spine more than normal; aim left of target; keep backswing short; and choose one more club.

The tip, like others in the guide, was provided by PGA instructors.

The Tee to Green guide was the first of a wave of products developed or planned under the Golf Genie brand by Traylor, a 39-year-old St.  Simons Island native and University of Georgia and Northwestern University MBA graduate. Traylor, who previously held different corporate jobs, is trying to crack the so-called "game improvement market," in which high handicap golfers look for anything to help lower their scores.

Traylor is after the millions of golfers who typically shoot 100 or higher.

"We want to help them cut through the clutter (of golf instruction)," he said. "We provide the critical information golfers need in a visual way, in a convenient format that's easy to carry."

"It doesn't replace the teaching pro and it doesn't replace lessons, but it's a supplement to it," said Mel Sole, who runs the Ritson-Sole Golf Academy and contributed to the guides.

Traylor said Golf Genie "ultimately will be a mobile app company," but the popular pocket guide books will be continued. "Whatever format golfers desire," he said.

The books are in 520 stores including Dick's Sporting Goods, Golfsmith and Edwin Watts Golf.  Traylor said 20,000 guide books at $14.99  were sold last year after debuting in the fall, and he expects to sell at least 70,000 this year. The first Golf Genie app had 26,000 downloads last year, and this year he expects 50,000 downloads for two apps, with a current price of $2.99.

Traylor's put in long hours building Golf Genie -  and that's hurt his own game.

"The more I work on this, the less I get to play golf," he said. The upside, he added, is that now,

"I am the core market for our product."

Some other golf tips products

Retail guides:

-- Quick Series golf books

-- On & Off Course Golf Tips

-- The Pocket Caddy

Mobile Apps

-- Golf Like a Tour Pro

-- Golf Drill Pro

-- Golf Pro to Go

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