By Barry Janoff
February 23, 2016: This past summer, Under Armour launched its "Rule Yourself" global multi-platform campaign with creative that included NFL quarterback Tom Brady, ballet star Misty Copeland, NBA MVP Stephen Curry and top-ranked golfer Jordan Spieth.
The sports gear and footwear company this week continues and expands upon the campaign with Manchester United star Memphis Depay, members of the USA Gymnastics Women’s National Team and Olympic swimming icon Michael Phelps.
Depay, Phelps and the USA Women's Gymnastics Team all are hoping to play roles in the upcoming Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.
According to Under Armour, this next evolution of the campaign "underscores the brand's vision of training as the focal point of an athlete's everyday life . . . Driven by the theme of JOMO (the joy of missing out) and the tagline "It's What You Do in the Dark That Puts You in the Light" (it) highlights the sacrifices these athletes make — and the elation they feel — when wholly dedicated to training for their sport."
Media buy includes spots on ESPN, NBC, ABC, MTV, and Turner. Support includes Internet and social media via YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat.
Spots starring Depay (identified in the ads via his Netherlands birthplace rather than ManU as his club has an official alliance with Under Armour rival adidas) and the USA Women's Gymnastics Team broke this week. Phelps is due to hit in March.
Lead agency is Droga5, NY.
People can also download UA Record to join Under Armour's fitness community via iTunes and Google Play.
Under Armour in January reported a 28% growth in net revenue to $3.96 billion and 31% growth of net revenue in Q4 to $1.1 billion, with chairman and CEO Kevin Plank specifically citing the business generated by and marketing support for such endorsers as Curry, Spieth, Copeland and Brady.
The newest chapter of our 'Rule Yourself' campaign is the natural evolution of Under Armour's training ethos," Adrienne Lofton, svp-global brand marketing for Baltimore-based Under Armour. "As a company built by athletes, we truly understand an athlete's never-ending quest to reach greatness and we want to showcase and honor their sacrifices."
According to Steve Penny, president for USA Gymnastics, "When Under Armour brought the 'Rule Yourself' concept forward, it really spoke to who our athletes are and the drive it takes to be the best. Our gymnasts dedicate the majority of every day to training and school, often beginning before everyone wakes up and after everyone has gone to bed, all to be the best they possibly can be.
"This commitment is demonstrated day in and day out for years, with the ultimate goal of achieving perfection, and that attitude and determination are what Under Armour understands better than anyone else," said Penny.
Under Armour's roster of endorsers also includes Cam Newton, Andy Murray, Lindsey Vohn, Buster Posey, Bryce Harper, recently signed Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson and a line endorsed by Muhammad Ali.
"As a company built by athletes, we truly understand an athlete's never-ending quest to reach greatness and we want to showcase and honor their sacrifices."
This past September, Under Armour signed a multi-year extension with the NFL regarding the NFL Scouting Combine, a deal that dates back to 2009.
The 2016 NFL Scouting Combine is being held this week in Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.
The agreement means that Under Armour maintains "exclusive rights as the NFL Scouting Combine's official apparel outfitter," and also will unveil an "expanded line of officially licensed Combine apparel for consumers."
"By providing this peek behind the curtain of our athlete's lives, we hope to inspire young athletes all over the world to push beyond their perceived limitations in order to achieve their ultimate goals," said Lofton. "We truly believe it's what athletes do in the dark, when no one is watching, that ultimately puts them in the spotlight they deserve."
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