Hershey’s may have a mega-hit on its hands, with rumors about a Reese’s Pieces-Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup going viral even before the company debuted the new mashup.
The company confirmed on Thursday that a Reese’s Cup stuffed with Reese’s Pieces will be available on shelves starting in July.
The announcement comes on the heels of online rumors regarding the new treat.
The rumors apparently began with a Facebook post by Marlena Courchain on April 28, containing blurry pictures of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups filled with Reese’s Pieces. Courchain hinted in her post that the chocolatey mashup would be released in July.
Two weeks later, the post has more than 38,000 shares and close to 5,000 comments.
Reese’s told Business Insider that it has no information on the leaker or how the information around the mashup was leaked.
But the same picture of the Reese’s Pieces filled Peanut Butter Cups quickly spread to Imgur and Twitter.
— The Klassic One (@KlassicMike) April 30, 2016
As though to confirm the launch of a product, Reese’s began teasing a Pieces-Peanut Butter Cup mashup on Twitter on May 5, about a week after the first photo surfaced, using the hashtag “cupfusion.”
— REESE’S (@ReesesPBCups) May 5, 2016
Pre-launch “leaks” have become an ideal way for companies to stir up excitement on social media about a product before it even hits the market. It’s a strategy that Oreo has notably executed for its many limited-time flavors, withFirst We Feast asking in February 2015if the brand was purposefully leaking flavors prior to their official release.
Hershey could use some buzz in its confection business, as growth of chocolate sales in the US has slowed each year since 2010, reports the Wall Street Journal. Tapping into customers’ love for mashups of nostalgic favorites could provide a perfect sales boost this summer.