American Express is marrying two of its marketing programs: its sponsorship of the U.S. Open tennis tournament in New York and its support of small-business owners via its “Shop Local” program.
The financial services company found that nearly half of all small-business owners surveyed said organized networking events are the most helpful when trying to land a business meeting with a new or existing client.
In response, American Express is giving more than 100 tickets and hospitality packages to select small-business owners in the New York-Metro area, providing access to one of the city’s top events, the U.S. Open — an experience traditionally reserved for larger businesses.
Additionally, American Express is showcasing various businesses at the U.S. Open, including: Melt ice cream sandwich shop, Glamsquad for hair touchups, Jason Markk sneaker cleaning, and artists Alvaro Tapia and Craig Fraizer.
“Backing small-business owners isn’t just something we say, it’s something everyone at American Express is truly committed to — providing them with tools and resources to help them grow their businesses,” says Bess Spaeth, senior vice president, global brand media and experiences, American Express, in a release.
American Express conducted the survey based on a random sample of owners of small businesses with fewer than 100 employees in the tristate area. The anonymous survey was conducted via an online panel Aug. 7-11.
The company is entering its 26th year of partnership with the United States Tennis Association. Other U.S. Open sponsors include Emirates, Chase, J.P. Morgan, Deloitte, Evian, IBM, Mercedes-Benz, Polo, Rolex and Spectrum. Official suppliers include Grey Goose, Heineken, Lavazza, Tiffany & Co., Wilson and The New York Times.
American Express is providing card members access to a variety of benefits at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, including the Card Member Lounge and Centurion Suite.
In addition to these interactive spaces, card members can access and redeem exclusive benefits with the tap of a contactless-enabled card or digital wallet, including a one-time “Spend $100 or more, Get $20 back” offer, earpiece radios with live commentary of the matches from ESPN’s broadcast, and exclusive Polo Ralph Lauren customized merchandise for purchase.