So much of the advertising is based on how much these equipment companies are willing to pay the usual golf rags (GOLF magazine, Golf Digest) or how much they're willing to shell out to the networks to push their commercials. It has historically been this way.
I remember back when the annual equipment "Hot List" edition was one of the most anticipated issues in Golf Digest. I really never bought into the hype, because just like their Best Courses surveys - you can bet your bottom dollar that the top 50 on that list were padding some executive-level wallets to plug their facilities.
All of this stuff - equipment reviews and golf course reviews - revolve around who is willing to spend more than everyone else to get their brand out there. Just because everything transitioned more and more to digital online traffic doesn't mean they're still not investing in "brand" advertising.
I guess it's one of the reasons I tend to like PING more than all the rest. Titleist is similar as it relates to their golf clubs and how they've approached things over the years... these two companies aren't pimping out new design models every three months and trying to saturate the marketplace.
Calloway and TaylorMade are obviously the two companies who don't agree with that philosophy. So when I hear about a "twist-face" driver, or you can expect 17+ more yards because of the lighter-weight and hotter-faced driver, or whatever - I pay it no mind.
Technology cannot get much more advanced than it already is. The rules of the game, the conforming aspects of equipment (including balls) have pretty much hit the ceiling. The USGA and R&A are actually under pressure to reel back some of the current technology as it is.
So if you buy a driver, say, going back 5-6 years, or irons, or fairway woods or hybrids - the technology boom hit in the mid-2000's. You're basically paying for the sleeker or flashier design of a newer product with that same basic core technology that those older models already have. Everything above and beyond that is just sensationalism and gimmicky.