If you think you’ve seen more Aperol spritzes this year, you’re not wrong. And if you’ve been drinking more of those sparkling red-orange drinks in pretty stemmed glasses, you’re doing exactly what the makers of Aperol at Campari hoped for.
“We saw there was a growing interest in Aperol in the U.S., especially at summer events and destinations,” said Melanie Batchelor, the vice president of marketing at Campari America. “We invested behind that.”
The citrusy bitter liqueur has been popular in Italy since the 1950s, but it took a coordinated push to bring “sunshine in a glass,” as Ms. Batchelor described it, to the United States. The marketing plan was a savvy one: It started in New York with a flurry of Aperol spritz booths that were installed at popular summertime events, including the Jazz Age Lawn Party and Governors Ball.
In the Hamptons last summer, Campari turned a little scooter car into a bar and drove it around offering free spritzes. The company also wrapped a Hampton Jitney — a bus that transports weekenders from Manhattan to the Hamptons — in full Aperol orange, with a spritz recipe and the message, “So it’s orange-y and bubbly at the same time. Plus it’s super popular in Italy, so you know it’s good.”