The WTA Tour has organised the largest ad campaign in its history, which is expected to cost $15 million and Serena Williams joined WTA Tour CEO Larry Scott in London to launch it. The marketing campaign will be rolled out across 75 countries over next 18 months and feature over 30 players.
The tennis stars took part in the film and photographic shoot (Maria Sharapova’s favorite) for the campaign which took place at various locations in Rome, Italy. The advertisements ask the question "Looking for a Hero?" presenting women’s tennis players as superheroes both on and off the court.
The focus of the first round of the campaign is to both elevate the star power of the Tour's athletes and to drive awareness of the season-ending Championships, in Doha, Qatar.
Larry Scott, CEO of the Sony Ericsson WTA Tour said: "This is a thrilling moment in the history of the Sony Ericsson WTA Tour. Never before have we planned, created and invested in a marketing campaign of this magnitude. The multi-platform campaign in many ways crystallizes how far we have come as a sport over the past five years, and everything we mean when we speak about the star power of our athletes and the excitement of women's professional tennis. I'm delighted and proud of the way the players have bought into the campaign. It's a huge testament to their professionalism and commitment to the growth of the game."
Serena Williams, who appears in the television commercial said: "Women's tennis is a premier sport for all women athletes, and I think it was a great opportunity to have the best athletes, female athletes, get together and be a part of such a wonderful advertisement. I was really happy to have an opportunity to be in it. I was more than excited to do it."
The first phase of the campaign, including TV, print and digital elements, will begin at the end of August and run through to the season-ending Sony Ericsson Championships in November. The second phase will begin at the start of 2009 and continue throughout the year.
At the Sony Ericsson WTA Tour's website you can see the "Looking for a Hero" TV commercials, behind-the-scenes video clips, print ad samples / wallpapers, related news, and photo galleries.