By Christa Carone, CMO, Xerox

I’m a terrible tennis player.  It’s one of those “life sports” that I wish I spent more of my time learning to play. As my teenage son and 9-year-old daughter handily beat me on the court, the only satisfaction I get is an up close and personal view of the US Open in action. This is Xerox’s second year partnering with the United States Tennis Association to help them run the highest-attended annual sporting event in the world. (Yep, that’s a true claim to fame for the US Open. The Olympics is humongous but it doesn’t carry the honor of being an annual event.)

There’s a lot of complexity that goes into managing the US Tennis Open. Our role is to help make it simpler – or, at the very least, make it seem simpler for every player, guest, official, coach, reporter, employee, etc. who is at the event.

For example, we manage the production of documents crucial to the USTA’s communication around the event – things like media reports, pairings, the evolving schedules of play and the daily draw sheets, which are turned around in the wee hours every morning of the tournament.

So, while you’re watching Serena and Andy light it up on center court, we’re behind the scenes – with lots of balls in the air – to help keep the tournament running smoothly. It’s a logical place for Xerox to be …and our role gives the USTA more time and resources to focus on what matters most: bringing world-class tennis to the fans.

BTW: Ever wonder how the Open selects the ball girls/boys for the tournament? Or who gets to sing the national anthem for the matches? Or how the grounds are set up so fast for two weeks of play? For more of what happens behind the scenes at the Open, check out this video series on the US Open YouTube Channel. It’s a sneak peek of the magic beyond the baseline.

But who wants just to be behind the scenes all the time? We’ve got enough swagger that we thought we’d sneak out this year and serve up our brand in a bigger way. After all, “business to business” brands like Xerox are really all about connecting with people. We like to think of it as B2P instead of B2B (and, because we have a thing for acronyms).

So, among many activities, we’re hosting a photo station for US Open attendees to pose for pictures and/or share their Open images with us via Twitter. We’ll be building a gallery on our US Open microsite to showcase these photos – so keep an eye out! We’re also happy to print Open photos for folks while they’re at the tournament. Even better, for every Foursquare check-in at the Xerox booth, we’ll donate $5 to USTA Serves, an organization that brings tennis programs to underprivileged youth*.

Stay tuned here for more details. Until then, you’ll find me tracking down Roger Federer for some help with my serve…and my backhand…and, oh well, it’s useless. But you will find me cheering him on.

*USTA Serves is a 501(c)3, tax-exempt, not-for-profit, charitable and educational organization. IRS ID #13-3782331. ®2012. USTA Serves Incorporated, 70 West Red Oak Lane, White Plains, NY 10604. All rights reserved.

Photo credit: Louie Lu