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Hershey felt the sentiment was right for the times. "If there was a time to warm up America it might be right now," says Baskin. She wouldn't pinpoint anything specific going on in the country that prompted the idea, but notes that the company is trying to push its own message of togetherness, saying "right now there are not a lot of things everyone can agree on, but everyone can agree on Hershey."

In addition to the Williams online video, two other real-life stories are showcased in other videos, one of two younger guys who hand out Hershey's bars to strangers and another about an even younger group of students who pass bars with friendly notes around to students in their high school.

Along with the online videos and some TV commercials, Hershey's push includes the distribution of nearly 200,000 coupons, each good for two free bars: one to get for one's self and one to give away. Hershey employees will also each get a dozen bars to pass out on their own. And there's an integration planned for Thursday's fourth hour of "Good Morning America."

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