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Hershey’s Head of Media On Leveraging Data To Create Content

To kick of Season 3 of The Rough Cut, Storyhunter Co-Founder Alex Ragir traveled down to ANA’s Master of Marketing Week conference in…
Hershey’s Head of Media On Leveraging Data To Create Content

To kick off Season 3 of The Rough Cut, Storyhunter Co-Founder Alex Ragir traveled down to ANA’s Master of Marketing Week conference in Orlando, FL to meet with Charlie Chappell, head of integrated media and communication planning for The Hershey Company. They discussed the state of the advertising industry, the convergence of media and creative, how he works with content teams, and why data is actually an unlikely benefit for the creative development in the advertising industry.

Below are edited highlights of the conversation:

You Have Two Choices: Evolve or Get Left Behind

It’s a changing world and everyone is getting into everybody’s space. It is incumbent upon the marketer to manage that. A little competition isn’t a bad thing. I think it has to be properly managed and expectations have to be set, but it also puts pressure on everybody to up their game. If someone isn’t evolving in the space today they’re gonna be left behind.

Understand All Your Platforms

Everybody knows that the media marketplace is fragmenting so we have to put our ads in a number of different places. And it used to be that you’d create one tv ad, one print ad, and you could run that across everything. Now what we’re learning is that to get the most out of a lot of the digital platforms, we have to understand how creative best works there, and we have to tailor the creative to what works best on those platforms.

Recognize New Media

Our fundamentals stay the same, but what changes constantly is how you deliver those fundamentals. Ten years ago, fifteen years ago, it was done on traditional TV. Now there’s video everywhere. We’re starting to get into eSports. There’s a lot of young men who spend a lot of time there, so we want to bring our products to life on those platforms whether it’s Twitch, Twitter or YouTube Gaming.

We’ve Transitioned To Digital, Now We Have To Optimize Digital

A lot of marketers have made the move into digital. What they’re dealing with now is how do they optimize for that? And this gets back to the idea that I have to make bespoke content for almost every channel that’s out there to make it work well. And that’s the dilemma: how to do that efficiently and effectively without taking too much time to do it all.

Leveraging Data Doesn’t Mean Losing Creativity

There’s a lot of data that’s used a lot to optimize the media. How can it now be used it to optimize the creative? I think for many people who are in the creative world, that scares them a little bit, because they feel like it’s taking out the human element of it. I don’t think you can lose that. So I think that’s what marketers going forward have to figure out: how to leverage data and technology for what it can do but still keep that human, creative element so that they’re still doing great work.

Previous episodes of The Rough Cut:

Season Two:

David Weinstock, Chief Creative Officer, RF|Binder

Bonin Bough, Founder & CEO, Bonin Ventures

Mary Kate McGrath, Chief Content Officer, Gallery Media Group

Barri Rafferty, President & CEO, Ketchum

Stacy Minero, Global Head of Content Creation, Twitter

Ari Halper, Chief Creative Officer, FCB New York

Mickey Meyer, President of Network, Group Nine Media

Season One:

Courtney Coupe, VP of Content, Great Big Story

Stone Roberts, VP of Global Video Strategy, Refinery29

Jason Beauregard, Head of Studio, VaynerMedia

Zahra Rasool, Editorial Lead, Contrast VR

Warren Cohen, Head of Video, New York Post

Greg Gilderman, Global Head of Video and Editor-in-Chief, Weather Channel

Jamie Bolding, Founder and CEO, Jungle Creations

Craig Duff, Video Journalism Professor, Northwestern’s Medill School of Journalism


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By Jake Watkins, Content Marketing Manager