Most Popular in:


Email This Item! Print This Item!

Aspirational Consumers Turn Nostalgic

By: Miriam Quart
Posted: April 7, 2011, from the April 2011 issue of GCI Magazine.

page 2 of 3

Infusium23 is a primary example of the nostalgia concept. As an 86 year-old hair care product line that’s been passed down for generations, Infusium23 continues to have a cult following.

However, like most nostalgic brands, Infusium23 fell out of touch with consumers with the absence of marketing and advertising for several years. Madison Avenue Consortium took on the task of reviving the brand with a new, modern, campaign that introduces the brand to new users who are looking for a premium product without the salon price, under the tag line “Better than ever hair days.” In 2011, Infusium23 is expected to draw in new ingredient-conscious consumers with a new “Color Defender” line that features a sulfate-free formula.

St. Ives is another nostalgic beauty brand that is grabbing the attention of young women with an ingredient story. Millennials grew up with St. Ives in their home. But throughout the years, this generation has been exposed to multiple product offerings from Aveeno, Healing Garden and Dove—along with the many lines from Bath & Body Works. As a result, St. Ives had fallen off the consumer radar screen. Today, St. Ives is hoping to re-connect with younger consumers who are interested in natural product ingredients and value—“with a flirty twist,” the focus of the brand’s new campaign.

Another “good ole” brand has gotten very creative by leveraging its own legacy. Prell shampoo recently launched a new ad campaign featuring Alexa Ray Joel, the daughter of the brand’s 1980s’ spokesperson, Christie Brinkley. This effort strategically re-connects the brand with the daughters of the Christie Brinkley generation. Female millennials (ages 18–29) today have strong friendships with their mothers, and often share products and longtime favorite brands. And it doesn’t hurt that Alexa inherited her mother’s locks.

But what if you marry a nostalgic celebrity with a nostalgic brand the way La-Z-Boy recently did? The new La-Z-Boy campaign highlighting sofas (not just recliners) features Brooke Shields, the model-entertainer that many consumers grew up watching. While marketing a recliner brand may seem antiquated, Shields surprises viewers of the TV spots by reminiscing about the brand as her dad’s favorite chair, which is symbolic for stability, comfort and family values. This marketing effort exemplifies the notion of “back to basics” with dad as the man of the house.

Men: The Right Target