Wimbledon campaign links tennis with iconic moments in history

Work aims to build global engagement.

The All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, which runs the Wimbledon tournament, will today (Monday) serve up its 2019 campaign, by McCann London, aimed at further building global engagement and cultural relevance for the 142-year-old event.

The integrated campaign, "#JoinTheStory", kicks off with a 60-second film, "The story continues", which links a selection of landmark headlines from Wimbledon to the global news archive, such as Billie Jean King’s role in leading the fight for equality in tennis.

The spot was created by Matt Searle and Olly Wood, directed by Elliot Dear through Blinkink and soundtracked by an orchestral re-recording of Oasis’ Live Forever. It will run on TV and online during the three-week build-up to Wimbledon. As well as the BBC, broadcast rights holders around the world will be encouraged to show the film.

As part of the campaign, the AELTC has also created a podcast mini-series. Produced by Livewire Sport, the episodes look at the cultural relevance of certain Wimbledon champions to world events, from Björn Borg and John McEnroe in 1980 to the outspoken Andy Murray winning in 2016, the year of the European Union referendum. The podcast will be distributed via Wimbledon’s own channels from 24 June. 

Some of the competition's iconic matches are being brought to life through a series of "Wimbledon rematch" experiential events, inspired by Secret Cinema and promoted by PR agency Boom, while a social media campaign encourages people to share their experiences and memories of Wimbledon.

Building on recent years’ campaigns – such as "A year in the making" in 2017 and "Take on history" last year – the AELTC is trying to reinvent Wimbledon for the digital age, while still retaining its traditional heritage and values. The integrated strategy is being delivered by head of communications, content and digital, Alexandra Willis.

James Ralley, the AELTC’s head of commercial and brand, said: "The story of Wimbledon began in 1877 and we’ve been making headlines ever since. Each tournament creates new heroes and new stories; while our greatest moments have shared the front page with two world wars, the moon landings and the invention of the internet. This global campaign truly celebrates Wimbledon’s ongoing role at the forefront of world news and events." 

This year’s Wimbledon runs during 1-14 July. As in previous years, the AELTC will be running outdoor and ambient advertising in the SW19 area of London to target visitors, media and local stakeholders.

A version of this story first appeared on PRWeek

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