Partnering with the women’s equality organization, SheIS, as well as other sports entities around the country, the United States Tennis Association designed a campaign with their agency, mcgarrybowen, that invited fans to take matters into their own hands and help change the way women athletes are seen, not only in tennis, but in all sports.
Although #WomenWorthWatching was led by the USTA and the US Open, the mission wasn't about tennis. The campaign engaged many sports organizations and leagues in a collaborative effort to change how women athletes are seen in all sports. Through the joint effort, the message was brought to millions and will continue to live on to support the fight for women’s equality in sport.
Objective: In 1973, the US Open was the first Grand Slam tournament to award equal prize money for men and women. In 2006 It named it’s facility after a trailblazing female tennis player. And in 2019 it proved that it’s not done fighting for equality.
Today, women’s sports get far less coverage than men’s sports do. Some studies put the percentage of televised women’s athletics as low as 4%.
Which means so many great stories—epic stories, moving stories, important stories-- ones with the potential to inspire the next generation, aren’t being told.
But the US Open was determined to help change that.
Strategy & Execution: Using the unifying hashtag, #WomenWorthWatching, fans, players, and partners were encouraged to post videos and images on their social channels of those female athletes that inspire them.
Kicking off the rally cry are :90 and :30 second spots narrated by Billie Jean King, that aims to continue the fight for women’s equality she led nearly 50 years ago.
The campaign first launched digitally during the US Open Series tournaments, where female athletes were already proving their skills on the court. While it was still gaining buzz, the campaign was amplified on the first day of the 2019 US Open, which was also Women's Equality Day.
While the hashtag campaign lived on social media, the message was distributed widely and frequently aired on ESPN, the Tennis Channel, and Fox Sports during the two week tournament and even beyond, providing extra coverage in the National Women’s Hockey League and Women’s National Basketball Association games.
Results: From celebrities like Sheryl Crow, University accounts, to parents of local volleyball teams, the data proves that #WomenWorthWatching hashtag has made an impact. To date, the hashtag has received over 269 million impressions with over 25,000 unique authors, and garnered over 100 million earned media impressions as a campaign. Best part? It’s still growing.