Don’t we all love throwback to a former time that we really cherished?
Whether it’s the smell of home-made cookies, a song that reminds you of your high school love or just seeing a pair of jeans from your childhood. We all love that warm fuzzy feeling, don’t we?
Similarly, how do you feel when you see an ad from the past or a commercial featuring an actor that has long been off air or product label with a vintage font and distinct shapes?
That’s how significant nostalgia is in today’s marketing landscape. A lot of brands and industries are tapping nostalgia marketing by reigniting campaigns strategies of the past. Nostalgia appeals to a wide audience, especially a large section of the Indian middle class, which is perpetually in a state of emotional flux.
Example: PaperBoat, a fruit pulp-based beverage brand, which soon gained popularity because of its product differentiation and nostalgic content is one of the brands that is effectively riding the wave.
Or the very famous “Vajradanti Vajradanti Vicco Vajradanti”! Those born during the 90s will definitely remember this iconic jingle
(A jingle is the physical manifestation of nostalgia in Vicco Vajradanti’s case). Cut to 2020, the brand has roped in youth icon and actress Alia Bhatt as their new brand ambassador. The brand has contemporised its jingle to appeal to the new generation, with ‘Yeh Hai Wohi Vicco Vijradanti’. The brand doesn’t want to give up its nostalgic charm, even as it tries to create a perception of being modern and hip.
Nostalgia influences customers to spend their money because it guarantees an immediate return in the form of happy memories and comfort. Which is why nostalgia marketing has become increasingly popular in the recent years. If you’re a company which is passionate about the past, just connect with yesteryear ideas and once-loved concepts. Infuse planning and strategy to come up with campaigns that your customers can connect with at a deeper and emotional level. Tapping into old, strong memories can be one of the most powerful ways to elicit emotion in your customers, specially if they are a millennial audience.
According to reports, brands like Nike and Pepsi are already making the most of retired designs and logos from the past, announcing them as “throwback” options or “retro” products. Shows and movies are tapping into old design features and strategies to tickle the nostalgic nerves of their watchers. Study states, 9 out of 10 people confessed that they think fondly of the past and 47% said they do so more often than not.
- Leverage social media – Post nostalgic images or quizzes on social media to elicit interactions and shares. Another idea is to solicit quizzes like, “Which 80s character are you”? to get a lot of engagement on social media.
- Use the power of senses – Invoke nostalgia through the senses. An easy way is to infuse music, foods or scents. Smell, they say is the most powerful to recall old memories. Boroline is a great example. Often labelled a “heritage brand”, Boroline typically represents not just nostalgia, but also longevity and consistency because of its smell and packaging, besides its ingredients; it’s somewhat a miracle product. People have literally grown up with it. Some might feel the 90-year-old brand is stuck in the past, with its age-old packaging and visual design language, but many experts feel this preservation of brand integrity is exactly what makes the brand successful. It’s the brand value!
- Find a theme for your nostalgic campaign – If you have been to any comic-con, there’s always a theme. If you want a successful nostalgic campaign, have an interesting way to use nostalgic references and use them as themes. Hot Wheels created a booth featuring a nostalgic nod to their long production history. What was more successful was the idea that they showcased cars that made a lot of attendees long for their childhood collections.
- Blog posts – One of the best and most popular ways to tie nostalgia with your brand campaign is to dedicate blog posts that are attention grabbing and have people reminiscing about the good old days with you. Buzzfeed has an entire section dedicated to retro pieces like the BuzzFeed Rewind.
Past is predictable and a great way to intertwine your marketing with nostalgia. It’s rather pertinent in today’s times of cut throat ecosystem to evoke feelings in customers they experienced long ago and transport them to another time through familiarity. It works well especially for brands that have an authentic connection with the past, especially some powerful associations with it.
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