Skip to Content
Ferrara candy boxes

Ferrara: Sweetening customer engagement by fostering a direct relationship with consumers

Explore Ferrara’s journey with SAP

Ferrara wanted to create a modern omnichannel experience for consumers to build relationships with fans across its iconic brands. To enable the sweet spot of strong data onboarding compliance in readiness to activate progressive profiling, the candy maker invested in customer data solutions from SAP and the SAP Emarsys Customer Engagement solution.



increase in contactable consumers.



compliant with consumer privacy laws.

10 to 20


above the industry average for open rates for e-mail campaigns.

With our investment in SAP Customer Data Platform, we’re realising our ambitions in digital marketing engagement and fostering a direct relationship with consumers supported by robust data collection and handling compliance.

George Lesko
Vice President and CIO
Ferrara Candy Company

The Challenge

Nurture brand fans with sweeter digital marketing experiences

For a company that believes in sharing delight in every bite, Ferrara has a sweet mix of high-quality products, superior innovation, and a portfolio of beloved brands. Long established as America’s sweet spot of snacking with irresistible jellies, candies, and sweet sugar-free delights, Ferrara keeps its finger on the pulse of what consumers desire. And while the legendary brands of  SweeTARTS, Trolli, Nerds, Brach’s, and more are loved by consumers, Ferrara continues to introduce sweet new sensations.


As part of its revitalized, customer-focused, omnichannel strategy, Ferrara wanted to get closer to consumers but was hampered by legacy technologies that limited its ability to engage and personalise experiences across channels. Wanting to unleash relevant and engaging digital marketing experiences to build relationships with brand fans, Ferrara recognised it was time to invest in a central data platform. With strong compliance around consumer data onboarding and management an absolute priority, Ferrara made the decision to invest in a suite of modern tools in the cloud.

Customer data is a strategic asset that Ferrara will be able to leverage across customer touch points with SAP Customer Data Platform in place.

Dan Bartelsen
Director, Information Technology Business Partner – E-Commerce and Digital
Ferrara Candy Company

The Solution

In pursuit of a unified customer profile across its top 10 priority brands

To lay the technology cornerstones of its omnichannel engagement and personalisation ambitions, Ferrara selected SAP Customer Identity Access Management (SAP CIAM) for B2C, SAP Customer Data Platform, and the SAP Emarsys Customer Engagement solution.


Investing in SAP CIAM for B2C allows Ferrara to make way for more engaging marketing experiences and build trusted relationships based on heightened security and personalisation. The solution speeds time to value with frictionless customer onboarding and boosts ROI by fueling personalisation capabilities with first-party, permission-based data.


Meanwhile, with SAP Customer Data Platform, Ferrara has a centralised data foundation to ingest, process, and share customer data in real time, allowing it to double down on targeting. And with SAP Emarsys Customer Engagement, Ferrara can target at a granular level, ultimately paving the way for hyperpersonalised customer experiences that resonate with brand fans. 

The Result

Increased contactable consumers across channels by 59%

Since implementing the solutions, Ferrara has seen open rates for e-mail campaigns of between 20% and 30%, which is 10% to 20% above the industry average. And using the solutions helps ensure Ferrara engages with consumers in a way that respects consumer privacy laws. The company is also conducting A/B test personalisation within the subject and body of the e-mails to gauge the benefits of personalisation in terms of more consumer engagement.


Reflecting on the technology adoption, Dan Bartelsen,  director of information technology business partners for e-commerce and digital at Ferrara, views SAP Customer Experience solutions as foundational for its future customer engagement needs. 


“Already, e-mail has been a bit of a game changer for Ferrara. Our campaigns have driven really high engagement, and from an investment perspective, it’s a very effective channel for building loyalty with consumers.”


In the future, Ferrara will be able to link this information with conversion and consumption insights.

We now own a lot of data that we used to have to pay for. This is helping us control our own destiny, which is really important for us. It’s hard to really put a price tag on the agility this brings to the picture.

George Lesko
Vice President and CIO
Ferrara Candy Company

Future Plans

Looking to grow customer contacts by 100%

As Ferrara takes advantage of strong engagement with its e-mail campaigns, the company is looking forward to the idea of using progressive profiling. Helping it learn more about its customers, Ferrara will enrich customer data by ingesting information from any microsite or campaign through SAP Customer Data Platform.


Bartelsen explains, “The lion’s share of the work is currently being done using SAP Emarsys Customer Engagement. But when it comes to insights, analytics, media efficiency, and consumer engagement, SAP Customer Data Platform is where we can really start to enrich consumer data from different sources, build audiences, and ingest anonymized data from other platforms and then target consumers who are brand fans.”

SAP helps Ferrara run better

Key business outcomes and benefits

  • Eased the collection and storage of consumer data, satisfying strict data compliance requirements
  • Enabled direct consumer engagement and expanded its database of contactable consumers
  • Increased sweepstake campaign registrations by a factor of three and lifted open rates for e-mail campaigns
  • Established a customer engagement platform for the future that supports a modern omnichannel experience for consumers

Featured solutions and services

  • SAP CIAM for B2C speeds time to value with frictionless customer onboarding and boosts ROI by fueling personalisation capabilities with first-party, permission-based data.
  • SAP Customer Data Platform provides a centralised data foundation on which to ingest, process, and share massive amounts of customer data in real time.
  • SAP Emarsys Customer Engagement empowers marketers to drive customer lifetime value by delivering real-time, omnichannel experiences. 

About Ferrara

Ferrara has delighted generations of candy lovers since its founding in 1908 and is now home to some of America’s most beloved candy treats. Offering more than 40 iconic and top-selling brands such as Trolli, Brach’s, and Lemonheads, the company is America’s number-one maker of nonchocolate seasonal confections.

Industry Region Company size Featured partner
Consumer products Chicago, Illinois 6,000 employees Deloitte Digital

A top SAP global strategic partner, Deloitte serves more than 1,000 active SAP clients globally and has provided SAP software implementation services to more than 3,000 clients, delivering more than 7,000 SAP software implementation engagements to these clients in the past 10 years. In the last three years, Deloitte has been awarded 11 SAP Pinnacle Awards — the most awards of any SAP global partner. 

Back to top