SBD/August 21, 2012/Marketing and Sponsorship

WTA Unveiling New Ad Campaign Featuring Celebs Including Donald Trump, Aretha Franklin

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The WTA Tour is launching a new ad campaign today featuring celebrities including Donald Trump, Aretha Franklin, Susan Sarandon, Randy Jackson, Stanley Tucci and Richard Branson, interspersed with players, touting the virtues of women’s tennis. The campaign is the second phase of the "Strong is Beautiful" series that began last year, featuring WTA players alone. Aided by CAA’s Alan Gold, a former tennis exec, the WTA reached out to the celebrities, who did not charge for the appearances. The WTA is not putting any cash behind the ads, but instead is offering them to tournaments and others to run. Tennis Channel is running them, as is CNN Int’l as part of a barter arrangement between the channel and the tennis circuit. WTA Chair & CEO Stacey Allaster also said the campaign is designed as a major social media effort, with the celebrities and WTA players expected to promote the ads through their Facebook and Twitter accounts. The WTA also will run the three video ads on YouTube. Allaster said the hope is that fans of the celebrities who may not be tennis followers will now watch the sport. Each of the celebrities ads carries their own tag line, followed by “Strong is Women’s Tennis.” Trump’s for example says, “Strong is having the heart to dream big and the fortitude to live your dream.” Reel Sessions, an L.A. production company, developed the creative.
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