The Power of the Past - K3

We all have little things that remind us of our childhood days; be it jewellery, clothes or music, nostalgia taps into our positive cultural memories from times past by.

In the age of impersonal digital media, building a social connection through nostalgia is an easy way for brands to leverage optimistic feelings associated with a walk down memory lane. Reliving positive memories with once loved items refines a brand making it more relatable, creating a connection to the consumer. Nostalgia marketing takes us back to a different time in our lives allowing us to disappear for a while, taking us to that moment where we can remember and reminisce on the good old days.

A modern-day example of nostalgia marketing done well is ‘Pokémon GO’. Linking a beloved story with the first real life example of augmented reality, the game combines innate happiness and nostalgia with modern relevance.

Furthermore, targeting millennials, Microsoft recently released a campaign through video called ‘Child of the 90’s’. Marketing their new Chrome platform, with the tag line ‘You grew up, and so did we’, the video takes a trip back to a time pre-iPhone and Wi-Fi, highlighting iconic products from the 90’s including ‘Hungry Hippos’ and the good old ‘floppy disk’.

Recent trends on social media include the hashtag #TBT (Throwback Thursday) where millennials tap into personal nostalgia on a weekly basis, reflecting on their past and posting for all their friends and family to see.

But what is the downside of this for the consumer?

Nostalgia marketing can be very profitable to any brand with customers willing to part with their money to go back to a happier or more simpler time. Brands who revive products can easily charge higher prices than the original, still achieving a great return. Furby, a popular children’s toy in the 90’s was first established in the market retailing at £35. Returning in 2012 with additional features such as the Furby connect app, the new toy now sells at £99.99!

Does nostalgia marketing target all audiences?

At what age is it appropriate to use nostalgia marketing? Nostalgia is very successful at reaching a large audience across all ages from your grandfather to your little sister, after all, we all have a past. It seems millennials in particular are pining for their childhood days of the 90’s, wishing to relive their younger years and brands are successful in taping into that. Using modern technology and social media channels, millennials are sharing content that engages with them, and nostalgia helps fuels this engagement.


What item reminds you of your past?