It is well known that everyone enjoys reminiscing on happy memories. However, due to the pandemic and a tumultuous year overall, many people have been reminiscing about the past to escape the uncertain times of the present. This is exactly why many marketers are appealing to the masses by featuring nostalgic facets in their products and campaigns—offering feelings of comfort and security during tough times. Let’s see how that looks!

how to make social media analysis work for you

Social Listening: A Tool for Understanding What Consumers Love

Brands can easily use NetBase Quid’s social listening tools to gain valuable insights from online conversations that include keywords like brand names, products, or emerging trends from their industry.

In this case, the emerging trend at hand involves the recycling of previous trends and the sentimental longing for the past—otherwise known as nostalgia.

It would be incredibly helpful to figure out what social media users would describe as being nostalgic, whether it is a song, a TV show, a piece of clothing, or anything else. Brands can use that information to understand their audience better and really know what consumers love so they can create a personalized customer experience. They can then hone in on opportunities and niches, and they can decide how they want to communicate with customers.

This process can spark ideas for everything from product design, marketing campaigns, and the way the social care team interacts with consumers.

Defining Nostalgia for Your Brand Marketing

After running a search for nostalgia and related key terms such as “retro,” “vintage,” “80s,” “90s,” and other decades in NetBase Enterprise, you can look at the Popular Posts widget to find highly engaged content. What is great about this feature is that you can see public posts by individuals, as well as brands. The following image shows a few of the popular posts on nostalgia by Urban Outfitters, Porsche, and the NBA, showing how common it is for brands to find inspiration from the past:


The post shared by Urban Outfitters displays a few pieces from their Fall 2020 furniture collection, which features touches of ‘80s nostalgia. NetBase Quid users can click the link to see the full post on Instagram, where they can also see comments to get a sense of consumers’ excitement over the products.


Looking at the Stream Widget allows you to browse through millions of posts during a specified timeframe. Here is a tweet from the stream widget, showing the joy that nostalgia can bring:


By learning what makes consumers happy, such as music from the ‘90s, brands can appeal to their target audience by choosing popular music from the demographic’s youth for their marketing campaigns or in stores. This will immediately spark feelings of joy in consumers, contributing to a more positive customer experience.

how to make social media analysis work for you

Retro Toys and Fashion are In Demand

Quid Pro users can also dive into emerging trends such as nostalgia by utilizing the News/Blogs search feature and analyzing published articles surrounding this topic. The following image depicts the many popular themes that derived from a News/Blogs dataset search of nostalgia within this year, including nostalgic music, food, destinations, and fashion.


One fascinating theme in this network is on nostalgic toys and gifts. The takeaway from the articles found within this theme is that some of the best-selling toys and gifts this year are actually products that were created decades ago.


Several articles derived from the Quid search go on to explain that classic toy sales are on the rise. Mattel, who bought Fisher Price, created a “virtual museum” on Instagram displaying the most iconic toys from Fisher-Price of the last 90 years to highlight these toys that never go out of style. They show several popular toys from each decade ranging from the 1930s to the 2010s. You can see two of these iconic toys in the Instagram posts below.


Parents enjoy choosing the toys for their children that are just like what they had growing up. A few nostalgic favorites that are still best-sellers are Barbies, Legos, and Hot Wheels. With all the high-tech and complex choices children have nowadays, the simple toys from the past are extremely refreshing among a sea of options.

Classic Collections & Less Screen Time

The classic toys also offer a form of amusement that do not involve screens. Parents know that minimizing screen time is important for children’s well-being, as they spend so much time using screens for entertainment as well as for virtual learning. These types of toys also keep their children occupied and allow them to use their imagination while parents may be multi-tasking due to working from home and taking care of their children during the pandemic.

Fashion brands have also found inspiration in past decades when designing their new collections. Streetwear brands are especially prone to incorporating nostalgia into their designs. The streetwear brand, The Hundreds, collaborated with sneaker brand Puma to create their highly reviewed Spring 2020 collection, which looked like it came straight out of the ‘90s. The artist Goathe created an illustrated lookbook for the collection of apparel and sneakers, which is inspired by high school cliques including preps and jocks.


There are so many fashion brands that have been bringing back retro styles. For example, Adidas has experienced a huge comeback due to the popularity of their vintage shoes like the Superstars and Stan Smiths from the ‘70s and ‘80s. Also, Levi’s has been offering a vintage collection for years, where they bring back super popular styles from the past, like the 1950s 701 Women’s Jeans, a high-waisted, straight leg style, which provides comfort with not only the sense of nostalgia but the loose and relaxed fit. Levi’s also launched a whole ‘80s aesthetic clothing line inspired by the TV show, Stranger Things.

Brands from every industry can bring back feelings of joy, peace, and comfort during uncertain times through nostalgic campaigns and products. The data from NetBase Quid shows that incorporating nostalgia into a brand’s strategy is effective in a wide range of industries, including fashion, music, home furnishings, tech, food, and toys and games. While it could be exciting to try something new, there is really nothing like the classics.

Reach out to learn more about NetBase Quid’s capabilities and for a personalized demo of our social listening and trend analytics capabilities!

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