I tried to avoid commenting about big box grocery and stores putting up pumpkins and halloween decor after Labor Day weekend. Mostly, I did my best to ignore it. And then, one day, as I strolled into my closest Starbucks for my you-can-only-have-this-once-a-week indulgence, there it was: clever marketing that let me know….”PSL is here early.”
I forgot everything I ever learned from multiple marketing textbooks and professors. I fell for it. Walking up to the counter, I knew I would order a Pumpkin Spice Latte. As it was made for me, as I drank it, I knew it wasn’t going to be my forever drink. But I had to have it, in that moment. Hazelnut Latte — underwhelming when the lure of PSL is in the air. The reality: I would have preferred my good ole stand by of hazelnut.
What’s more fascinating to me is the media around Pumpkin Spice Lattes. Introduced in 2003, the PSL craze is still strong. As you’ll read in one of the links below, there’s a surprising black market for the Pumpkin Spice Syrup, and a bevy of Pumpkin Spice flavored everything in case a latte isn’t your flavor.