Hershey has been running TV ads, lately, for a range of new products with a big Hershey label on the packaging. These include Hershey Cookie Layer Crunch and come in bags and bars.
It makes me want to write an entire new chapter in Marketing Without Advertising.
Hershey’s has bought dozens of companies and not changed the names of the products. Hershey’s owns Almond Joy, Mounds, Reese’s, York Peppermint drops; Hershey’s sells Kit Kat, Rolo, Cadbury, Twizzlers and many others. Each has kept its own name. Each name is well known and stands on its own, meaning we know what it tastes like.
My concern is the new products that aren’t really variations on their existing candy bar are sold with a big Hershey’s logo.
They are trying to use the 100 year old brand of Hershey’s to promote a new product. This will help introduce the new product but will slowly degrade the original Hershey’s bars and their close relative bars. Consumers will slowly lose the the mental taste of Hershey’s bars and lose the powerful drive to buy them. New consumers will have a confused sense of what Hershey’s is and will never have the ‘mainline’ desire for the original product.
The new candies should have new names. The Hershey name should not be hidden but it should be small and related to the manufacturing information. The new products without the Hershey logo would be slower to grow but they would have their own clientele.
My new chapter would tell the story of ‘New Coke’ and its gigantic global failure.