By: John Znidarsic, Senior Copywriter, AdCom
Ditch the scary masks. Toss those heart-shaped chocolate boxes to the curb. When it comes to candy consumption, no other holiday makes a Peep like Easter.
According to Nielsen data, Americans bought $823 million in candy during the week preceding Easter in 2015. From jelly beans to chocolate bunnies, consumers fill Easter baskets with treats that are often only available for a short period.
This year, The Hershey Company took a unique approach to marketing two of its powerhouse brands – it consolidated efforts. For the first time, the company decided that there was plenty of room in its branded basket for two of America’s favorite candy egg brands to go-to-market together.
Previously, each brand had a separate media program for the holiday season. They used traditional tactics that included public relations pushes to introduce new products. This year, Hershey’s left the media kits on the shelf and turned to Facebook for a more engaging approach. In humorous videos, they coupled the Reese’s egg with the Cadbury bunny to launch its campaign.
Senior associate brand manager of Easter at Hershey’s, Tashima Garner, described the strategy: “We wanted to create content that would be shareable and that consumers would engage with and comment on. Video is a very shareable format – we know that consumers are constantly sharing videos on their phones through Facebook and other social media platforms. Video made the most sense because we wanted to get consumer talking.”
And, talk they did. In the first two days, the videos had more than 280,000 views on Facebook. What’s more impressive is the fact that these videos outperformed Reese’s efforts in a paid engagement as the official candy sponsor of the NCAA March Madness tournament.
For years, public relations professionals have been sharpening their elbows to secure the lead for their brand. Given the recent success of this Hershey’s partnership, perhaps we are entering a time where practitioners should prioritiz
e inclusion over exclusion.
After all, isn’t sharing the true currency of social media?
John Znidarsic is a PRSA Greater Cleveland board member & senior copywriter at Adcom, an advertising agency headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio.