Meet the 2024 Category Captain for Candy: The Hershey Co.

Hershey utilizes a robust methodology rooted in shopper insights to establish what it calls "Gold Standard Merchandising Principles."
Category Captains_Hershey 2024
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The Hershey Co. prides itself on understanding the shopper and delivering industry-leading solutions to its retailers through thought leadership and great retail partnerships.

Last year, Hershey partnered with Kwik Trip Inc. to bring value to the consumer by filling a need for foodservice bundling while providing fuel savings. In March, Kwik Trip customers received up to 5 cents off per gallon of gas, up to 30 gallons, if they purchased a Reese's super king peanut butter cup and a take-home meal. In addition to the monthlong promotion, customers could enter to win free gas for a year through a sweepstakes.

Both the promotion and sweepstakes drove strong engagement. According to Hershey, the promotion brought in more than 52,000 new buyers into the category and drove 7% of new buyers to repeat purchases in the category. The sweepstakes reached more than 85,000 customers and received more than 175,000 entries. The offer was repeated later in the year and saw similar results.

Hershey is also being recognized for utilizing a robust methodology rooted in shopper insights to establish what it calls "Gold Standard Merchandising Principles." These principles are based on a blend of input from trip missions, VideoMining, virtual reality (VR) shelf testing, in-market testing and aisle solutions.

Hershey's aisle solution places top-performing items, both king and standard bars, in the shopper's line of sight (the Strike Zone). In 2023, to confirm its merchandising principles were productive amid new dynamics like inflation, post-COVID changes, pricing and innovation, Hershey tested 13 concepts in VR and did extensive in-market analysis of its solution vs. others. The company found that for retailers that have been implementing this approach for two-plus years, the Gold Standard consistently delivers growth in both sales and units.

All information contained in this profile was supplied by the company.

For the full winners' list for the 2024 Convenience Store News Category Captains, click here.

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