Nostalgia is back in Indian Marketing

Nostalgia is back in
Indian Marketing
 Dr. Shampa Nandi- Faculty ISME
India as a fast growing economy draws much attention
of the investors from both Indian and foreign brands to play in Indian market.
As market is cluttered with lot of players in each product category, there is a
dire need for the marketer to know how Indian consumer will respond to a
particular advertisement or specific marketing strategy. The new trends of
consumer engagement from television, to online channels and the rise of mobile
social media makes the marketers to identify more effective marketing efforts
that are likely to yield more return. At this cusp of new age of marketing
where data science, research, analytics are creating more refined ways of
targeting and serving the customers, creative and engaging story created by
marketer is inspiring the customers and  the
organisation both. One of the most basic and primitive way of creating an
interesting story is to add nostalgia in it. Nostalgia has very recently
generated interest in marketing.
Nostalgia refers to a longing for the past, a
yearning for yesterday or a fondness of possessions and activities associated
with the days of yore (Holbrook, 1993). People have a tendency to prefer a
product which was used when he or she was young. Since past is inaccessible
consumers desire to go back to the past is inevitable. Also past brings the
sweet memories, the comfort and familiarity. Nostalgia advertising works very
well when there is a turmoil for any company in current market or in the time
economic uncertainty. Again in any market, there will always be a group of
customers who prefer nostalgia as a marketing theme. Nostalgia takes us away
from the hustle bustle of today’s hectic schedule and gives a scope to
romanticize. Nostalgia is not a new buzzword, its charm will grow for someone
with the passage of time and distance. Marketers even use nostalgia to projects
its brand as an authentic brand and to portray a long term relationship with
customers. Marketing content added with nostalgia grab immediate attention of
customers and bring sweet memories. The retro branding strategy has become an
international phenomenon and India is not left behind. A number of companies
have developed advertisement evoking nostalgic flavour.
Nostalgia is used for creating niche and market
– -Hector
Beverage, producer and seller of Paper-boat, the non-carbonated beverage has
made a strong presence in the market in spite of the presence of Giant
companies like Coke, Pepsi and Parle G. The company has targeted the common
urban Indian and global kids of India who are looking for a conventional but
convenient drinks like “Jaljeera” or “Thandai”. The company has correctly
positioned itself as “Indian ethnic alternative” with the sentiment associated
with childhood of making “Paperboat”.
With the help of
Facebook, Instagram as well as through the television advertisement, the
company was able to pull some forgotten memories of childhood starting from
childhood picnic to hand knitted sweaters and connected consumers to the brand.
Paper-boat was able to stand out in the cluttered market with the right mix of
nostalgia and social media marketing. With the initial success of positioning
and penetrating Indian Urban market, the company is expected to grow Rs 100 cr.
in 2107.
Nostalgia- works as emotional blackmailing agent,
creates instant love for a brand
– Google’s recent digital movie “The hero-Bollywood
story”  campaigned on to Father’s day(19th
June, 2016) is a story of a father in 60’s who failed to achieve his dream of
joining Bollywood in his young age. Once the son, came to know about that, he
took his father to the location where a famous Hindi movie was shot. With the
help of Google search and other apps, he was able to record some famous movie
dialogues narrated by his dad and presented that in a theatre hall where his
dad is the manager. The emotional bonding of father-son was beautifully portrayed
by that ad and it could immediately win the heart of Indian customers and gain
consumers’ confidence.   Google gave a
strong message that now exploring life is possible to a great extent with the
help of technology. Google search and other apps give a wing to Indian cinema
enthusiasts to experiment and discover things about movie, stars, dialogues and
stars. This multinational technology company is able to achieve the image of a
valued brand. At present in India, one in every ten searchers in Google
happened to be on film. 
Nostalgia is used to create brand awareness and
enhance brand loyalty
of the nostalgic advertisements manage to create a lump in your throat and make
you pause for a second. Diwali commercial of Tanishq featuring Deepika
Padukone, was a great creation of Lowe Lintas, which was able to connect with
people and create a ripple in the market with a clear distinctive message.
Indian young generation are not ashamed of their skin and origin, the
advertisement inculcate the sense of pride of being Indian in the
advertisement. Like every year, Diwali should be celebrated with
“Tanishq-Divyam.” This advertisement posted with the intention of reviving the
old tradition in the present, no reinvention is required to celebrate the old
festival with our near and dear ones.
Nostalgia is used in crisis management –Maggi, Nestlé’s instant noodle brand is
again able to manage its comeback with a series of nostalgic advertisements and
with social media marketing. Once having 75% market share in Indian instant
noodle market, the company had a night mare in 2015 once, it was banned in
Indian market. After the ban was removed Maggi started communicating with the
consumers giving the assurance of its quality and popularity. Started with the
advertisement like’ “We miss you”, “Welcome back Maggi” and “Nothing like
Maggi”, all these campaign were based on the theme- sweet memories about time
spent with Maggi. Without a brand ambassador, the brand is conveying the
memories of having Maggi after school or recollecting the hostellers’ time with
Maggi with the batch mates. Currently Nestle’ is able to regain more than 50%
of its original market share of Maggi by capitalizing on consumers’ emotion and
able to give the brand a sense of credibility, authenticity and quality.
Nostalgic advertisement capitalize brand attachment- Fortune Edible oil’s advertisement
“Ghar ka Khana”, projecting the love of grandma for his grandson and the
attachment with the homemade food has helped the brand to reinforce the brand
attachment and enhance brand loyalty. Fortune always focus on telling a story
on how edible oil brings people together and food is an inseparable part of
Indian relationships.
Nostalgia advertisement works very well in case of
eateries as it brings the memory of homemade food and stimulate a positive
resonance. A number of restaurants namely “Ammis Biryani, Sanjha Chulha, Mast
Kalandar are able to position themselves in this category.

Numerous research are done on nostalgic
advertisement and most of the researchers have agreed that nostalgia is able to
arouse attention, connects consumers immediately, is persuasive and evokes
nostalgic reflections on consumers.
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