WTA Rebrand Includes Alignment with ATP Tourney Tiers
December 3, 2020
ST. PETERSBURG, FL, – The WTA (Women’s Tennis Association) introduces a new corporate identity, redefining the organization’s strength as a collective unit of inspiring athletes and tournaments. The launch also reveals a new ‘WTA For The Game’ campaign that highlights the driving forces of the sport, aimed at creating deeper fan connections. The rebranding, which includes the WTA’s first logo redesign in 10 years, coincides with the announcement of a simplified numerical naming system for WTA tournaments.
The WTA was founded in 1973 when Billie Jean King rallied the support of her like-minded colleagues to form an association that would evolve into what is today a membership body representing two equal-partner constituencies: the athletes and the tournaments. Nearly 50 years later, tennis is the leading global sport for women highlighted by some of the most recognizable names in all of sports, with 32 countries and regions represented in the Top 100 of the WTA Rankings.
The sense of collective purpose and empowerment shared by the Tour’s trailblazers and passed on to subsequent generations provides the creative inspiration for the new ‘WTA For The Game’ campaign. Developed for the WTA by design agency Landor Australia, the new brand identity and marketing campaign will be fully integrated across the WTA, including television graphics, print materials, tournament branding, advertising, promotion and digital and social media.
The WTA’s new brand image incorporates a dynamic reworking of the familiar letters W, T and A – with a tennis ball functioning as the crossbar of the A – and marks a return to a silhouette of a female tennis player. The serve action pictured in the logo was given prominence for its literal and figurative significance to the WTA. The serve is the only shot in tennis where the player has absolute control and where the point begins. It also accentuates the fearless initiative taken by the WTA’s early founders who took control of their destiny and blazed a trail for the women of tennis today. The symbol makes subtle references to the sport’s global nature, framing the athlete within a circle that evokes the universal spirit of the WTA’s platform.
“The WTA is built on the grit, passion and determination of generations of athletes and tournament promoters,” said Micky Lawler, President of the WTA and head of marketing initiatives. “Our new logo embraces the visual language of tennis ad celebrates heroic women who come together ‘For The Game.’ We will wear it as a badge of pride and a reminder of the power of unity among strong individuals – by joining forces, we build something bigger than ourselves.”
Marketing Campaign: ‘WTA For The Game’
The ‘WTA For The Game’ campaign will be highlighted by several consumer touchpoints, including 30 and 60 second commercial spots as well as influencer stories that will be broadcast, published and posted across WTA player, tournament and affiliate channels. To enhance brand synergy while building consistency for tennis fans, tournaments will have access to a range of marketing collateral, with scope to feature a wide array of WTA athletes, to meet their individual promotional needs.
Using the slogan ‘WTA For The Game’ as a starting point, fans are provided new insights into the individual narratives of players as they describe the defining moments that have shaped their tennis journey and what gives their game purpose. Furthermore, a series of fan engagement activations will be released as the 2021 season begins. To see the latest brand and campaign stories, visit the WTA’s re-designed website and dedicated ‘WTA For The Game’ landing page here.
“From both the sporting and business perspective, we were inspired by the WTA’s inherent qualities of leadership, fearlessness and shared purpose, and aimed to deliver a brand strategy and visual platform that players and tournaments could use to amplify this powerful message,” said Jessica Murphy, General Manager of Landor Australia. “Fans are enthralled by individual skill and athleticism, but they also invest deeply in what motivates these head-turning women on and off court. Exploring these driving forces – the similarities and differences – is a key element of the brand.”
Revamped Tournament Categories
In planning this rebrand, the WTA worked with the ATP to create consistency and alignment across professional tennis. Starting in 2021, both Tours will share the same tournament tier and nomenclature system to create simplicity for fans and consumers. Moving forward, WTA events will now be categorized as WTA 1000 (incorporating the former Premier Mandatory and Premier 5 tournaments); WTA 500 (formerly Premier 700); WTA 250 (International); and WTA 125 (125K Series). The revised nomenclature is not tied to specific ranking points (which stay the same) or prize money, it is a categorical system to help define WTA tournament levels.
“Fans really respond to the unified approach which tennis is uniquely able to provide,” said Lawler. “We see it with ticket sales at combined women’s and men’s tournaments, viewership on shared broadcast platforms and the popularity of the ‘Tennis United’ digital content series co-created by the WTA and ATP amidst the challenges of 2020. Adopting this streamlined tournament naming system is 100% about making it easier for WTA fans, corporate partners and the media to engage and follow our sport.”