Waiting for the Australian Open January 16th, 2009
By Ki Myo Kim
Overseas Promotion Team
Kia Motors Corporation
2009 is finally here, and the Australian Open, one of four grand slam tennis tournaments, will be held from January 19 (Monday) to February 1 (Sunday), 2009.
The Australian Open, the first grand slam event of the year, will take place for two weeks in the city of Melbourne. During this time of year, many people are busy going to year-end parties and New Year gatherings. But as the person in charge of the Australian Open, I have long forgotten about Christmas or New Year’s. As usual, I am sitting at my desk in the office until late into the night making the necessary preparations.
<Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne Park>
The Australian Open was the first global event that Kia Motors headquarters sponsored. Kia became a sponsor of the Australian Open in 2002 and last year extended the sponsorship until 2013. As more and more people become aware of Kia Motors’ sponsorship of the tournament, we are receiving greater attention and that means more things to take care of.
As it is the case with all other events sponsored by Kia, the sports marketing staff of the Overseas Promotion Team, and numerous others, work tirelessly behind the scenes to prepare for the two week tennis championships.
Kia Motors makes countless preparations for the tournament. For one, there are print ads published in the official tournament booklet which are created by an ad agency that works with our Overseas Communication Team, the team sitting next to my team. There is also the production of a 30-second ad to be shown on the giant screen at Melbourne Park, as well as various Kia banners and ads to be displayed inside and outside the tennis courts. In addition, Kia supplies the official vehicles before and after the tournament and designs, creates decals for them. We also have to pay close attention to promotional materials that go inside the media kits along with our press releases.
<My teammates and myself packing media kits for the event>
Until four years ago, I used to change the channel when the sports news would come on TV. But now, as the person in charge of tennis on the sports marketing team, I am delighted if I happen to see an event sponsored by Kia featured in the news or see a Kia logo during a sports event. The fact that I take such delight even surprises me!
During the Australian Open, I can see Kia logos all over the place in Melbourne Park. And when I do see them, I become aware of the people around me and truly feel proud of Kia. I almost want to wear a sign on my body saying “I work at Kia Motors.”
For nearly six months, I haven’t been able to meet friends during the week and just caught up on sleep on weekends because of the Australian Open. Still, I feel my heart swell when I think that after all the arrangements I made as the person in charge of Kia related activities for the championship, the tournament will soon get underway.