The Olympics

Reese's Summer Olympics Push Stars Winter Winner Vonn

Reese's 'Do Summer Like a Winter Olympian' Campaign Will Include Brand's First Live Action TV Spot in More Than a Decade

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Lindsey Vonn for Reese's
Lindsey Vonn for Reese's Credit: Hershey Co.

Hershey Co.'s Reese's is putting a twist on a Summer Olympics campaign by having Winter Olympics gold medalist Lindsey Vonn try out various summer sports.

The "Do Summer Like a Winter Olympian" campaign shows Ms. Vonn attempting events including archery, dressage, fencing and rhythmic gymnastics. Ms. Vonn is the only athlete being featured in the campaign, which kicks off Monday.

Meanwhile, the Hershey's brand on Monday announced it has added U.S. gymnast Simone Biles to the chocolate maker's first-ever Olympic Games campaign.

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For now, the Reese's effort with Ms. Vonn is focused on social content such as showing her participating in various Summer Games activities with a dose of humor. Two TV commercials set to air starting in July will mark the first time in more than 10 years that Reese's is using live action in a spot rather than animation.

Lindsey Vonn on horseback for Reese's campaign
Lindsey Vonn on horseback for Reese's campaign Credit: Hershey Co.

Reese's said during the Summer Games, Ms. Vonn will provide commentary on certain competitions, conduct polls, and respond to fans on social media. The brand began promoting the push with Ms. Vonn on Monday.

"I couldn't be more excited to partner with the Reese's brand for their Rio 2016 Olympic Games campaign and to 'go for it' like only a Winter Olympian can this summer," Ms. Vonn said in a statement. "I'm a very serious athlete and will continue to train and pursue my Olympic Winter Games skiing goals, but this partnership gives me a chance to show off my humor and highlight a fun side that many people do not get to see on a regular basis."

Arnold Worldwide is the creative agency on the Reese's project, which comes as the brand gears up for the launch of Reese's Pieces Peanut Butter Cups. A combined Arnold/Havas team is working on the Hershey's campaign.

Hershey is using a lot of big-name Olympians in its first year as a Team USA sponsor. Earlier this month, it added swimmer Michael Phelps and soccer player Carli Lloyd to the team that promotes jerky brand Krave.

Hershey's showcases Ms. Biles in one of its newest videos, a two-minute "Hello From Home" spot that shows the gymnast receiving letters stuffed into Hershey's chocolate bar wrappers. Interestingly, the bars she receives do not appear to have the Olympic-themed red, white and blue lettering Hershey's has been using since the spring.

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Separately, Ms. Biles is in marketing for Kellogg's, including an appearance on boxes of Corn Flakes and Special K with Red Berries.

Hershey's is also featuring wrestling gold-medalist Jordan Burroughs and Paralympic swimming gold-medalist Mallory Weggemann in its campaign and is sponsoring Hershey, Pa. native David Nolan in his push to make the swim team. Hershey's also has Olympic gold medal gymnast Shannon Miller serving as a brand ambassador, including having her at events in New York and Chicago earlier this year.

Hershey's U.S. advertising spending declined 13.8% to $637 million in 2015, according to the Ad Age Datacenter.

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