AmEx U.S. Open Effort Goes Viral

American Express is serving up something a little different with this year’s U.S. Open—a strong social networking component.            

AmEx has picked out four up-and-coming players—Sam Querrey, Shahar Pe’er, Caroline Wozniacki and Gal Monfils—to highlight in this year’s ad push. But, unlike in previous years, there will be no print component to the campaign. Instead, much of the focus is on creating interactive experiences with the players which can be spread virally over social networks like Facebook and Twitter.

For instance, fans who are on site will be able to shoot digital videos of themselves against a green screen which makes it look like they are playing against one of the four. The video can then be sent out virally. There will also be a “virtual tennis match” game available via mobile phones.

Jessica Igoe, director of global sponsorship marketing at AmEx, said the social networking campaign is part of the brand’s overall effort to “better connect fans and players.” Igoe said the participating players all have significant followings on those social networks. Said Igoe: “We’ll be working with them to tell fans about their experiences.”