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Special Project

Special Project
From the 16th Annual Shorty Awards

US Open Meme-caps

Finalist in Vertical Video


Goal 1: Make tennis more relatable to the average person consuming social media content.

Goal 2: Do a better job of recapping the action from each day, each week, and finals weekend, to be more inclusive of the global audience who was following the tournament from various timezones. 






Strategy and Execution

Daily meme-caps were driven by peak moments from each day of play across all 14 days of main draw tennis. From upsets, milestone moments and triumphs to quirky soundbites, bloopers and funny fans; the daily meme-caps put a day's worth of experiences at the US Open into 60 second speed edits that would both entertain and inform fans across the world. The process was simple: identify the most memorable moments from the day, add in animations, memes, and internet culture, then finally voice it over to tell that days story.

Missed a day of action at the US Open due to work, or matches were happening while you were asleep? No problem, catch-up on the highlights with an entertaining edit to bring you up to speed.  

Weekly and championship weekend meme-caps were more intensely focused on the most unhinged moments from the tournament to relate back to internet meme culture to draw in non-traditional tennis fans. Examples include quotes from players, animals and bugs on the court, viral player reactions, celebrities in attendance, and even wild fans. Once these moments were identified, the social and video teams would brainstorm current popular memes, gifs, and sounds that could be woven into the video edits to bring these meme-caps to life. 

The challenge with this style of videos was that it needed to be edited with such authenticity for social media, or else it would come across as over-edited and non-digestible, and consequently, not perform on our social media channels. 


Meme-caps were a hit! The sentiment from fans across the globe were that these entertaining edits were not only informing them about the tennis matches, but bringing the experience of the US Open to life. Showcasing tennis player personalities, situational humor at the US Open tennis courts, and the vibe from fans in the stands became a magical mix when paired with relatable internet culture visuals and sounds. 

Notable social media experts across different sports pointed to these recaps as a new wave method of communicating with social media audiences. Recaps are a pillar of the sports media community, they will always exist to catch fans up on what happened, but as social media channels evolve the way fans digest information - the traditional recaps need to change along with them. 

The regular cadence of these videos throughout the duration of the US Open tennis tournament aided in our social media team achieving record metrics: 1.65 Billion engagements and gaining 962K new followers across channels.

We consider our efforts a success because we not only brought entertaining and informational content to tennis fans, but also captured the attention of almost a million new followers to continue to grow our sport and our event throughout the year. As a once-a-year event, it's so important for us to capitalize on our moment - and we whole-heartedly believe we did that. 


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