Starbucks launched its iconic Pumpkin Spice Latte earlier than usual – reportedly causing higher foot traffic.
The iconic drink returned on August 25th. An article by Bustle explained that from 2011 to 2017, the official return of the Pumpkin Spice Latte is usually in the first week of September.
“However, those years also had an early release date that hovered around Aug. 30, with Starbucks bringing back the PSL as early as Aug. 26,” the report said.
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Placer.ai, a retail location analytics firm, reported that the foot traffic for the respective weekend of the launch shows that consumers were visiting Starbucks stores more often than they have in the last six months of the pandemic.
“The Saturday and Sunday following the launch were within 7.7% and 6.2% of 2019 levels of the equivalent Saturday and Sunday in 2020 – even with the peak those days enjoyed last year,” reported Placer.ai.
According to the report, the early launch of the PSL has been part of a wider strategy. It aims “to welcome the fall earlier and say goodbye to summer months less oriented to a coffee chain.”
While the COVID-19 pandemic has been difficult for brands, including Starbucks, brands can take action to “optimize for a holiday season unlike any other,” Placer.ai said. “And that begins with taking a page out of the Starbucks gameplan.”