P&G signs gymnast Gabby Douglas, adds her to 'Moms' campaign

Gymnast Gabby Douglas
P&G has signed Olympic gymnast Gabby Douglas, adding her to a roster of 28 U.S. Olympic and Paralympic athletes representing some of the company’s 80-plus brands.

The deal is Douglas’ first. She was not on many experts’ list of favorites in gymnastics until last March after she upset teammates Jordyn Wieber and Alexandra Raisman at the AT&T American Cup.

Douglas, who won the Olympic trials earlier this month, will be featured in P&G’s digital series “Raising an Olympian.” The campaign showcases historic footage of athletes like swimmer Ryan Lochte and hurdler Lolo Jones competing as children as the athletes and their mothers’ tell the story of adversity they faced and how they overcame it. The digital shorts end with the company’s slogan, “P&G: Proud Sponsor of Moms.”

P&G today is expected to post two short videos on Douglas. The first video focuses on her development as a gymnast and her request to move to Iowa to train with gymnastics coach Liang Chow, who coached Olympian Shawn Johnson. The second video shows her mom giving her permission and ends with her making the team.

The campaign was developed by Wieden + Kennedy.

The deal with P&G includes options that the company can exercise after the Games, said Sheryl Shade, Douglas’ agent. She added that she’s been in talks with three P&G brands about signing the gymnast for separate deals.

“We’d like to continue and make the deal bigger after the Games if we can,” Shade said.

Shade said that she is working on a second deal for Douglas that she hopes to finalize before the Olympics open on Friday. Then she will focus on looking for post-Olympic opportunities, which she believes will come.

Douglas’ story was told in a news segment last week on “Rock Center with Brian Williams,” and she joined her teammates on the cover of Sports Illustrated’s Olympic preview edition.

“People are looking to get in the mix with her,” Shade said.
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