The King’s Candy

Ad Age examines a celebrity-backed promotion designed to provoke the over-60 crowd into visiting the candy aisle more often.

Coinciding with the 30th Anniversary of Elvis’s death next summer, Hershey will shimmy onto the shelf a limited-edition peanut-butter-and-banana-creme variety inspired by the rock ‘n’ roll legend. And the rollout will be accompanied by a significant promotional outlay.
The push comes as part of Hershey’s effort to regain momentum for its brands, which have lost share to Mars during the last three months. Sales for Reese’s — No. 1 in the chocolate category — fell slightly during the last year to $412 million. And while many retailers question the appeal of the new flavor itself, the power of the pompadoured pop star is expected to bring attention to the item in stores.

About David Burn

Co-founder and editor of AdPulp. I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. I worked for seven agencies in five states before launching my own practice in 2009. Today, I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.


  1. david, were you joking about the over-60 crowd reference?
    can’t imagine that target being interested in this product, as most of them are growing increasingly concerned with what they eat. at the same time, it’s hard to believe elvis has appeal with youth today. at least certainly not more appeal than a contemporary rocker or american idol participant.
    the promotions could include spots with people saying, “hey, you got an addicted rocker who choked on his own vomit in my peanut butter and chocolate!”

  2. Yes, I made up the part about targeting old folks. I can’t get a thing by you, HIgh Jive.

  3. Look out Cobain. It’s the Return of the King!