Hershey, the confectionery manufacturer, follows a variety of core guidelines in its media strategy in reflection of its need to reach a very large audience while also securing the necessary level of marketing precision.

Charlie Chappell, head/integrated media and communications planning at Hershey, discussed this subject at the Association of National Advertisers’ (ANA) 2019 Media Conference.

“At any one time, we can have up to 15 different brands in the candy/mint/gum category being supported by media,” he said. (For more, read WARC’s in-depth report: Legacy marketer Hershey welcomes the balance of martech intelligence.)

The scale of Hershey’s operations is confirmed by another powerful datapoint: “The household penetration of the candy/mint/gum category in the United States is exactly 1% higher than toilet paper,” said Chappell.

A result of this enormous prospective audience? “Throughout the year, we need to reach almost every consumer in the US over the age of 12. And we need to reach them 365 days out of the year,” he continued.

One guiding principle for marketers outlined by Chappell based on this experience is finding the right mix between precision and reach. “Know who your target is, but make sure that it's big enough,” he said.

“We've all talked about the fact that all the new targeting capabilities are great. But if you're not reaching enough people to deliver your business, you're going to have a problem.”

Another tip involves understanding consumer habits: “Know exactly where [your target customers] spend their time. That’s easier to do now than it was with survey data and some of the old things that we've had to use in the past,” said Chappell.

Having learned where the target audience spends its time, it is essential for marketers to craft creative appropriate to each media property – and that can now require handling certain responsibilities internally, rather than depending on agencies.

“Know how to communicate to your audience on different platforms. I think a big reason why there's in-housing of creative is because there's so much more [messaging] that we have to make,” Chappell said.

“Each platform, everywhere, has little nuances. That means you need to change things up, and know how to measure them, even in real time.”

Sourced from WARC