This hand-bound One-Word Dictionary for Hershey’s champions female talent and sisterhood in Brazil

Embracing a slower, more physical form of campaign, BETC Havas hopes to rectify the omission of “sororidade” (sisterhood) from Brazilian dictionaries.

18 May 2022

Where campaigns for colossal brands are concerned, it’s easy to see why agencies might favour a digital approach, offering ease when it comes to production and audience reach. So it’s a welcome change of pace to see something more tangible and reflective in the sphere, which is exactly what BETC Havas has just delivered for Hershey’s. Utilising traditional hand-sewn binding and an A3 art book format, the agency has crafted the One-Word Dictionary as part of the brand’s Her for She campaign – an initiative championing female talent. The idea for the One-Word Dictionary came from BETC Havas when it discovered that the word “sororidade” (sisterhood) did not exist in Brazilian dictionaries. Aiming to rectify the omission, the agency decided the word needed more than a mere definition; “it deserves its own book,” says Marcelo Ribeiro, creative director of BETC Havas São Paulo.

Rather than pushing a singular rigid definition, BETC Havas has widened the scope of the word, inviting seven female talents in Brazil to discuss what sisterhood means to them. Each definition has been brought to life with custom illustrations from BETC Havas and São Paulo-based studio Olho Bala, using the term as a starting point and loose conceptual thread between the pages. Another unifying force throughout is colour: “The One-Word Dictionary uses an intense colour palette that shows the strength of women without losing the subtleties of female talents,” Marcelo tells us.


BETC Havas: One-Word Dictionary, Hershey’s (Copyright © BETC Havas, 2022)

While the starkness of the palette and the grandeur of the A3 format provides the book with the same weight you might expect from an old trusty dictionary, hand-scribbled scrapbook accents bring the voices behind the dictionary to the fore. In fact, Marcelo likens the text to a “blank moleskine”, allowing its seven contributors to take over the pages with their definitions. From rappers and scientists to activists and film directors, BETC Havas has pooled the likes of writer Ryane Leão and artist Katu Mirim for a broad range of responses to the word. Then, to outline the uniqueness of each contributor’s definition, BETC Havas mixed Sharp Grotesk – Hershey’s brand typeface – with cursive calligraphy. Aiming to “translate a unique word” with a “unique design”, BETC Havas steered clear of similarities with traditional dictionaries, instead finding inspiration in art books.

In all, 100 dictionaries were produced and sent to a collection of influencers. Meanwhile, the creation process has been turned into a video – a clever way of turning a uniquely physical campaign into a digital format. BETC Havas hopes both the One-Word Dictionary and accompanying video will prompt publishers to add the word to their own dictionaries, in line with Hershey’s continuing initiative to bolster visibility around female talent.

GalleryBETC Havas: One-Word Dictionary, Hershey’s (Copyright © BETC Havas, 2022)

BETC Havas: One-Word Dictionary, Hershey’s (Copyright © BETC Havas, 2022)

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BETC Havas: One-Word Dictionary, Hershey’s (Copyright © BETC Havas, 2022)

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Liz Gorny

Liz (she/they) joined It’s Nice That as news writer in December 2021. In January 2023, they became associate editor, predominantly working on partnership projects and contributing long-form pieces to It’s Nice That. Contact them about potential partnerships or story leads.

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