The Hershey Company
An Integrated Global Marketing Case Study
| AbstractThe confectionary industry is becoming intensely competitive and so, the Hershey Company needs to continue to strengthen brand loyalty to stay competitive in a growing and changing global market. Hershey’s has increased the value proposition of chocolate and snacking in the minds of consumers by producing a variety of flavors and product choices that are marketed to targeted audiences in targeted segments through specific channels of communication. The company’s strategic focus on aligning marketing strategies with changing consumer preferences has led Hershey’s to expand their integrated marketing communications plan ...view middle of the document...
Operating under 80 brands in 70 countries worldwide, Hershey is a global leader in chocolate sugar confectionary, and chocolate-related grocery products. The Hershey Company was founded in 1894 by Milton Hershey when he decided to produce sweet chocolate as a coating for his Lancaster Caramel Company confections. Today, the Hershey Company remains committed to their consumers, the community, and children around the world by providing high-quality products while conducting business in a socially responsible and environmentally sustainable manner (www.theHersheyCompany.com , Our Story).
The Hershey Company produces a variety of confections, the most iconic brands being Reese’s, Hershey’s kisses, Jolly Rancher, Ice Breakers, and Brookside. Additionally, Hershey produces a variety of baking, and pantry items such as cocoa powder, ice cream toppings, and peanut butter. The ever-growing challenges driven by the health –conscious “millenials” and the increase in diabetes, gluten intolerance, and heart disease requires Hershey to transition to simpler, healthier ingredients that seem more natural and away from the traditional iconic chocolate confections. This change in global consumer preferences presents the need for the Hershey Company to develop and market organic, reduced-fat, gluten-free, kosher, and sugar-free products. Along with the changes in consumer preferences, fluctuating harvest conditions in West Africa and changing supply patterns from growers in Brazil and India have caused volatile input prices for chocolate production (Ahmad, 2015). This has impacted the cost of cocoa and sugar, two main ingredients in chocolate and confectionary sweets. Trends in volatile input prices and health consciousness have limited industry growth, necessitating the Hershey Company to rely on brand loyalty to give them the ability to pass rising costs onto consumers.
Company Overview and History
For over a hundred years, the Hershey Company has had a variety of approaches, from quality to taste to health benefits, advertising their products. As the company grew, Hershey changed their marketing strategy to better meet the demands of its consumer population. In the birth years of the company, Hershey’s early products appeared luxurious even though they were affordable and primarily consumed by the general American public. The Hershey products bore French-inspired names such as Chocolate Croquettes and Petit Bouquets (www.thehersheycompany.com , History). The most popular product in the early days being chocolate cigarettes which were mainly marketed to women as an acceptable alternative to actual tobacco cigarettes. Hershey’s advertising campaigns have progressed as follows:
* 1898 – Hershey believed that as long as consumers believed their products were of high quality, they would sell themselves and so they used a child in cocoa bean has their trademark logo emphasizing the quality of their product. The logo implying that their chocolate was “as...