A recent flight through Amsterdam last week placed me in front of Marike, a lanky blonde standing outside the duty-free shop. Marike was outfitted in the black knee-high boots the European (and some New York) girls are wearing this season, and a black skirt. Her outfit might have received scant notice in an airport as crowded as Amsterdam’s, had it not been 7 A.M.
But what attracted me to Marike was not her nightclub outfit, but what she was spraying into the air for passersby.
Holding a small perfume-sized decanter, she squeezed out clouds of Absolut’s latest obsession, their new vodka Absolut Pears.
“They do not let us serve it,” smiled Marike as she misted the air. “So we spray it in front of [people].”
I inhaled the new vodka.
Sure enough. Pears.
This new sampling ritual reminds me of something friend Nicole Ertas said summing up marketing efforts at a major liquor marketer, "Figure out the targeting, make sure you have distribution...then bring in the girls!!!"