| Tuesday, June 21, 2016Leading up to swimming’s biggest summer events, SwimToday invites athletes, families and fans around the nation to learn more about the sport of swimming, find a team and show their support for the U.S. swim team through its latest campaign – #SwimUnited.
This serves as the second phase of SwimToday, following a collaboration with Disney•Pixar’s “Finding Dory” to encourage families around the country to not only find Dory, but to “Just Keep Swimming” by finding a swim team through the SwimToday program. SwimToday is a collaboration of 10 industry partners created to show non-swimmers and their families why swimming is the #FunnestSport and provide an invitation to join in.
In addition to encouraging user-generated social media content with the #SwimUnited hashtag, SwimToday.org will host a video hub with fun compilations that feature home videos of National Team athletes such as Missy Franklin and Ryan Lochte as age group swimmers, plus other fun videos on why they enjoy the sport and picked swimming over other team sports.
A series of artwork combines creative Americana taglines with images of National Team athletes alongside age group swimmers.
“Every four years swimming is in the spotlight. We’re using the #SwimUnited campaign to utilize this opportunity to unite the swimming community and grow the sport through organic social content,” said USA Swimming Marketing Manager Jake Grosser. “With the #SwimUnited campaign, our goal is to have members express their passion for the sport and share with their friends as an open invitation to join a team.”
To kick-off the campaign, personalized Splash Magazine covers were sent to the 300,000 USA Swimming member households. Each cover portrayed the swim caps worn by U.S. National Team members during the Olympic Games displaying the family’s last name, making them part of the #SwimUnited team.
Individual’s posts on Instagram with the hashtag #SwimUnited will create an 8.5- by 5.5-foot mosaic of a SwimToday poster in the Aqua Zone at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials – Swimming. There were more than 2,000 posts in the first two weeks of the campaign, a great start to capturing the nearly 10,000 images needed to create the 3,000 photo mosaic.
The campaign posters feature National Team athletes alongside age group swimmers and printed flag images to incorporate an Americana theme. USA Swimming worked with the American Legion, its Americanism Commission and Americanism Division throughout the campaign to ensure proper treatment of the U.S. flag and to showcase proper respect and etiquette.
“The Americanism Commission is the leader in flag education and protection. It also oversees a variety of programs based on community service, citizenship, patriotic values, mentoring young people and the care, protection and well-being of children,” said USA Swimming Chief Marketing Officer, Matt Farrell. “The uses of printed flag images on swim caps and swimming lane lines represent the country and show the well-deserved respect for the flag. USA Swimming is grateful for the guidance and collaboration of the American Legion on this inspiring project.”
According to research, nearly 80 percent of parents don’t consider swimming as a competitive sport for their kids after completing swim lessons, largely due to a number of common misconceptions parents have about the sport. On the flipside, parents who experienced swimming easily rated the #FunnestSport higher than other sports in categories such as teamwork, fun, ease of learning, proximity, parental enjoyment, social skills, self-esteem and scholarship opportunities. [i]
For more information on SwimToday and the #SwimUnited Campaign visit www.swimtoday.org.
[i] 2014 State of the Competitive & Fitness Swimming Industry Report by Sports Marketing Surveys