Clint Flowers/Dunkin’ Donuts
Dunkin’s new pumpkin drink features Munchkins.
Raises Dunkin’ Pumpkin Drink Wars Along with, what else, donuts.
Launching Wednesday, its new fall drink Munchkin combines pumpkin-flavored donuts with iced coffee, topped with whipped cream and caramel drizzle, marking the first time the chain has added donuts directly to its beverage line.
Called the “Ice Spice Munchkin’s Drink”, the drink was created in collaboration with rapper Ice Spice and actor Ben Affleck, who is a huge fan of Dunk. The two starred in a TV ad promoting the drink, which referred to the rapper’s fans as “munchkins.” This is the second commercial Affleck has starred in for Dunkin’ after debuting in a spot. This year’s Super Bowl.
Dunkin’ rolled out its fall menu in mid-August, just weeks before Starbucks added its pumpkin spice latte to menus. On Tuesday, Wendy started selling A pumpkin spice-flavored frosty for a limited time, a new flavor on its menu and a pumpkin spice-flavored cold brew coffee drink that uses the same syrup from the pumpkin spice-frosty.
Dunkin’ said in a release that “pumpkin spice season has been pretty predictable lately” and that the new drink is “appealing to early-bird pumpkin lovers, regardless of the season’s official start.” Prices vary by city, and the drink will be on the menu for a limited time.
Adding pumpkin-flavored drinks is a no-brainer, as the flavor continues to grow in popularity. Starbucks’ Pumpkin Spice Latte has become a reliable hit, making it a fall(ish) staple that has given the coffee chain the seasonal sales boost of the year for the past two decades.
Dozens of other food products have flooded the market, from pumpkin spice Oreos to beer, hot chocolate mix, and protein powder.
For marketers, seasonal produce is an important way to generate buzz. Often, they choose items that make people feel a certain way—nostalgia or excitement for a new season—but that they’ll be happy enough to buy more than a few times a year. Also, ‘limited time only’ availability adds to the appeal.
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