Nostalgia or Retro Marketing puts old-fashioned and refreshingly simple concepts and images into a new context.
By now we are all so familiar with revivals that it is absolutely acceptable to dress up in a mix of 60ies and 80ies style. The only thing which matters is the look. Marketers are jumping on this train now, recreating old fashioned ideas into new, stylish campaigns. Whereas some of this nostalgia concepts might stir up some “good old times” feelings most of them look refreshingly simple, even cool. The concepts are easy to grasp and fascinating in their straightforwardness.
The New York based company Flippies turned the good old flip book into a new promotional advertising tool. Flip books are considered an early form of interactive entertainment. The concept is simple: flipping the pages quickly with your thumb creates a kind of mini-movie. Flippies idea is to turn marketing-messages in mini-movies, starting from film trailers and TV commercials to funny little concept stories for flip book giveaways at tradeshows, or to flip through some sport highlights from the last baseball game.
Another good example of retro marketing is the Zihotch watch. The Zihotch watch by Japan’s Maywadenki has no dial, clock face, or digital display. There is just an old school telephone dial on the panel of the watch. If the owner wants to know the time, he has to dial “117″ and there will be a lady announcing the time in Japanese. The Zihotch watch also works as an alarm clock.
Just by recreating a plastic version of its famous contour bottle of the post-War era, Coca-Cola was able to double its sales. Always on the lookout for something new, exciting, interactive, or high-tech, some marketers might miss how effective a simple, straightforward marketing strategy can be. People like what they are used to. Putting nostalgia into a new context might not only stir up some “good-old-times” feelings but also encourage to stop, to look, and to think it over. And one thing is absolutely sure: People will remember!