Did you know that research has found that feelings of nostalgia make consumers more willing to spend money? Authors of a study noting the positive effects of nostalgia on consumers remarked:

We wondered why nostalgia is so commonplace in marketing… We found that when people have higher levels of social connectedness and feel that their wants and needs can be achieved through the help of others, their ability to prioritize and keep control over their money becomes less pressing.

It’s no wonder that cereal brands will bring back vintage packaging, taking consumers back to carefree childhood Saturday mornings – and making them more likely to pull that box off the shelf. More and more music videos are purposefully attempting to appear like low-tech, 90’s productions. Then there is the show that took that nostalgia capitalization to another level: the Stranger Things franchise. And consumers have loved it. 

Source: Giphy

Tell a story

So how can nostalgia can be effectively used in marketing? Remember to tell a story – and keep it simple. Your primary goal is to spark a positive association between your consumer and a product (or past experience that will draw them to your product.) Below are some recent examples of companies that used nostalgia to persuasively target their consumers. 

Spotify’s “Listen like you used to” campaign

Spotify’s latest campaign – “Listen like you used to” – capitalizes on nostalgia to encourage listeners to experience their old favorite tunes once more. The campaign simultaneously targets a broad range of generations individually, and it’s rather brilliant. The Drum relates:

Created by Who Wot Why, the campaign features a series of quirky, cultural creatives that hark back to well-loved music, targeting an audience of listeners who grew up from 1979 to 1999.

Through clever wordplay of classic lyrics, artists and track names, the bold ads aim to remind passers-by that while life may change, classic songs remain the same.

View some of the ads from the campaign below! 

Source: the Drum

Source: the Drum

Source: the Drum

Dum Dums: Make Life Pop

Another example of nostalgia marketing is Dum Dum’s recent “Make Life Pop” campaign – their first advertising campaign in the past thirty years. The ad uses the power of storytelling to convey the universal appeal of lollipops and the pure joy they can bring to life regardless of age.

Milla Stolte, head of strategy at agency Smith Brothers which managed the campaign, remarked:

It boils down to listening to folks’ stories about how delighted they felt finding their favorite flavor in a bowl as a kid and how that’s stayed with them as they’ve grown up.

We hope you’ve enjoyed these nostalgic campaigns, and feel inspired to create your own!