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Hershey’s Chocolate Raises the Bar by Going Direct


Chocolate. Simply saying the word conjures up images of deliciousness and innocence, something most of us still enjoy long after childhood. While nearly everyone immediately knows the look and taste of “The Great American Chocolate Bar,” the iconic Hershey’s brand needed to adapt to the ever-changing customer expectation of online shopping.

Hershey’s partnered with DEG, A Merkle Company, to develop a direct-to-consumer (DTC) strategic plan to gather first-party data. This is how we helped Hershey’s to better understand its customers' behavior and continue its lead in the confectionery industry.

To encourage more planned purchases of late-stage-differentiated products, Hershey’s needed to create a frictionless path to purchase that would allow anyone to learn about its products; finding exactly what they’re craving or wanting to gift when visiting its website.


To start, the team focused on the most important customer insight: Shoppers buy sweets to satisfy a craving. However, when purchasing treats as a gift, shoppers are likely to spend more and purchase unique products, especially when shopping online.

We developed a cross-channel, multi-year marketing and technology roadmap to expand Hershey’s into the DTC space and propel it toward achieving its revenue goals. The roadmap included three distinct personas to target, channel strategy, and media recommendations based on persona-specific tactics for acquisition and retention. Then, we launched the ecommerce initiatives designed to increase engagement and conversion.

Knowing that customer experience is everything, our creative experts built a one-stop Hershey’s DTC site on Salesforce Commerce Cloud, with a design structure for each brand to live harmoniously within the same website without compromising consumer-brand affinity.


Successfully launched the new DTC website, Shop.Hersheys.com during key months leading up to holiday and corporate gifting season


Increase in orders


Increase in sales compared with the previous year

Keys to success

  • Content evaluation, Alteryx data append, and cross-channel media analysis
  • Marketing and technology roadmap with audience targeting, channel, and media strategies
  • Commerce and creative team expertise on Salesforce Commerce Cloud

Discover how we did it. Contact us today.

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