Heineken helps tennis fans hunt for tickets to the US Open

When the US Open tennis tournament comes to Flushing Meadows every August and September, tickets to the event can be hard to find. But this year an interactive photo hunt on Instagram hosted by Heineken gave a few clever fans the chance to find their way into the men’s final.

How did it work? Heineken’s Crack the US Open contest stitched together more than 200 photos to create a mosaic panorama depicting tennis fans seated in the stands, which appeared  within the @crack_the_us_open Instagram profile (photographed by industry vet Art Streiber). On September 3, a clue and codeword posted to the @heineken_US Instagram account signaled the start of the ticket giveaway, and prompted the community to search for a particular fan in the massive scene to start the photo hunt.

Players then followed a series of clues in the captions of the photos that composed the mosaic of tennis fans. If they were the first person to find their way to the final photo in the game and comment the codeword in the caption, they would win a pair of tickets to the real game. The contest continued for three days, with 1,500 people taking part in a total of 7 photo hunts.

The game was hailed a success for helping to drive awareness for Heineken’s sponsorship of the US Open, now 22 years running. And according to Heineken, which saw a 20% increase in followers for the @Heineken_US account during the contest, “Instagram was the perfect platform for this because fans at events like the US Open are using it to capture and share their experience with their friends in real time.”