Hershey:  A Pennsylvania brand with global brand equity

                The Hershey Company, based near Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, was founded in 1894 by Milton Hershey and grew into a multinational company (History of Goodness, n.d.) with 80 popular candy brands sold in 60 countries (Hershey Named No. 2 Most Powerful Corporate Brand, n.d.).  The Hershey Company is a leader is the U.S. market for candies and chocolate with most of its focus on the United States, with 80% of its revenue coming domestically and 20% from other countries.  Hershey’s marketing strategy is focused on the U.S. because other brands like Mars, Nestle, and Mondelez have a more well-established international footprint (Key, 2015).  In the United States, Hershey holds the #1 position in chocolate (44% market share) and mints (37% market share), and the #3 position in gum (11% market share) and non-chocolate confections (8% market share) (Trainer, 2020).

                The Hershey company has a well-defined and executed brand strategy.  Hershey’s core brand strategy focuses on their major brand names, their iconic products.  Hershey’s, Hershey’s Kisses, Reese’s, Kit Kat, and Ice Breakers are their top five brands, which account for 75% of their U.S. sales (Stanley, n.d.).  They own other brands such as Jolly Rancher, Almond Joy, York Peppermint Patties, Pay Day, and Rollo as well.  Their approach behind each brand is to develop strong brand equity, originality, and superior quality.  Each core brand is valuable.  They target this approach at smaller target markets (The Hershey Company – A Little Something For Everyone, 2020).  Using a micro-marketing approach, Hershey’s customizes its products for the particular demands of a small market segment (Key, 2015).  Pricing-wise, they charge more than comparable products, placing themselves as the premium brand (Hersheys Marketing Strategy & Marketing Mix (4Ps), 2017).  Their micro-marketing approach with targeted and custom-tailored products allows them to offer more options at higher prices (Key, 2015).

                Hershey’s has decided to be at the forefront of digital innovation in eCommerce and digital marketing in its industry and has redesigned packaging to look better in mobile pictures as well as to get more attention in stores (Lindell, 2019).  In social media and in the digital commerce experience, Hershey has created a digital marketing strategy which rests on five pillars:  develop connections to make products easy to find online, create high-quality content for every product, partner with retailers for conversion, create engaging brand communities for consumer feedback, and use data-driven ad delivery in order to give the right customers the right messaging (Steele, n.d.).

                Although a local company, Hershey’s is a strong national company and global brand.  They focus domestically, but they sell in 60 countries (Hershey Named No. 2 Most Powerful Corporate Brand, n.d.).  As a brand, they have built a family of brands that have high perceived value to their customers, the brand equity that is their brand strategy goal.  Through micro-marketing, fervor regarding quality, value-based pricing strategy, and innovating digital marketing, the Hershey Company has been successful in its brand strategy.


Hershey Named No. 2 Most Powerful Corporate Brand. (2015, June 24). CSP Daily News. https://www.cspdailynews.com/snacks-candy/hershey-named-no-2-most-powerful-corporate-brand

Hersheys Marketing Strategy & Marketing Mix (4Ps). (2017, December 26). MBA Skool. https://www.mbaskool.com/marketing-mix/products/17537-hersheys.html

History of Goodness. (n.d.). Hershey. https://www.thehersheycompany.com/en_us/home/about-us/the-company/history.html

Key, D. (2015, November 1). Evaluating Hershey’s Marketing Strategies and Initiatives. https://marketrealist.com/2015/10/hershey-marketing-strategies-initiatives/

Lindell, C. (2019, May 14). Hershey CEO Michele Buck on stand-up packaging, taking ‘holistic’ approach to commerce. https://www.candyindustry.com/articles/88676-hershey-ceo-michele-buck-on-stand-up-packaging-taking-holistic-approach-to-commerce

Stanley, P. (n.d.). Goodness Comes from Our Core: Driving Growth through our Most Iconic Products. Hershey. https://www.thehersheycompany.com/en_us/home/newsroom/blog/goodness-comes-from-our-core-driving-growth-through-our-most-iconic-products.html

Steele, A. (n.d.). Driving consumer-centric digital change. Hershey. https://www.thehersheycompany.com/en_us/home/newsroom/blog/putting-brandcommunity-experience-at-the-heart-of-digital-commerce.html

The Hershey Company – A Little Something For Everyone. (2020, September 3). The Brand Hopper. https://thebrandhopper.com/2020/09/03/the-hershey-company-a-little-something-for-everyone/

Trainer, D. (2020, August 25). Competitive Advantages Drive Sweet Growth Opportunities for the Hershey Company. https://www.forbes.com/sites/greatspeculations/2020/08/25/competitive-advantages-drive-sweet-growth-opportunities-for-the-hershey-company/?sh=22008f42d3fc

Published by Art Ocain

I am a DevOps advocate, not because I am a developer (I’m not), but because of the cultural shift it represents and the agility it gains. I am also a fan of the theory of constraints and applying constraint management to all areas of business: sales, finance, planning, billing, and all areas of operations. My speaking: I have done a lot of public speaking in my various roles over the years, including presentations at SBDC (Small Business Development Center) and Central PA Chamber of Commerce events as well as events that I have organized at MePush. My writing: I write a lot. Blog articles on the MePush site, press-releases for upcoming events to media contracts, posts on LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/in/artocain/), presentations on Slideshare (https://www.slideshare.net/ArtOcain), posts on the Microsoft Tech Community, articles on Medium (https://medium.com/@artocain/), and posts on Quora (https://www.quora.com/profile/Art-Ocain-1). I am always looking for new places to write, as well. My certifications: ISACA Certified Information Security Manager (CISM), Certified Web Application Security Professional (CWASP), Certified Data Privacy Practitioner (CDPP), Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA), VMware Certified Professional (VCP-DCV), Microsoft Certified System Engineer (MCSE), Veeam Certified Engineer (VMCE), Microsoft 365 Security Administrator, Microsoft 365 Enterprise Administrator, Azure Administrator, Azure Security Administrator, Azure Architect, CompTIA Network+, CompTIA Security+, ITIL v4 Foundations, Certified ScrumMaster, Certified Scrum Product Owner, AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner See certification badges on Acclaim here: https://www.youracclaim.com/users/art-ocain/badges My experience: I have a lot of experience from developing a great company with great people and culture to spinning up an impressive DevOps practice and designing impressive solutions. I have been a project manager, a President, a COO, a CTO, and an incident response coordinator. From architecting cloud solutions down to the nitty-gritty of replacing hardware, I have done it all. When it comes to technical leadership, I am the go-to for many companies. I have grown businesses and built brands. I have been a coach and a mentor, developing the skills and careers of those in my company. I have formed and managed teams, and developed strong leaders and replaced myself within the company time and again as I evolved. See my experience on LinkedIn here: https://www.linkedin.com/in/artocain/

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