Have you ever thought how nostalgia is played out in the telecom market? Presumably the smartphone market these days. Why the nostalgia market works so well?
Apparently, new technologies play their disruptions by recreating familiar things i.e. design cues that evoke old objects inter alia software mimicking the look of the old things it has replaced. Primary examples being the settings icon that looks like a mechanical gear, notes app that looks like a yellow notepad and the mail icon as a postage stamp. Clicking a picture which still fakes the whir and click of a shutter from a Nikon/ Kodak camera, whereas in reality there is no sound making shutter present in the current devices.
One can argue that these types of equipment such as the camera were as recent as the year 2005, but that was an entirely different era for the mobile industry. Ever heard of the term “gone with the wind”? Exactly!
These days I-pods are collectables, disc players and walkman are already antiques. Although the old had a dignified richness never rivalled by the digital world, there’s little of a reason to mourn the death of arid floppy discs. After all, nostalgia cycles don’t move around the world at the same pace. Imagine there are still people around who still own a classic mobile unmindful of its death.
Unless you live under a rock, chances are you’ve heard something about the interactive mobile game that took the country by storm. ‘Pokémon GO’ is an extraordinary example of nostalgia marketing done well. But — and maybe even more importantly — the app also offers great insight into the power of coupling nostalgia with modern relevance.
Technological nostalgia has a deeper meaning. People like us often refuse to accept that newer is automatically better. We cling to the stuff with possessiveness and give meaning to outdated objects. If we were sent back to the 1990’s would we be happy?
Aligning marketing strategies with a people’s emotion has always been successful marketing, but tapping into fond memories can be an invaluable asset and tactic. From fast food and breakfast cereals to gaming systems, call and search preferences and everything in between, smartphone brands are engaging through retro roots. This is called nostalgia marketing. This is a powerful new marketing trend: what it is, who’s doing it well, and how best the companies employ nostalgia marketing tactics to market their products is yet to be seen with the emerging competition.