How to Use the Draw of Nostalgia for Your Summer Campaign

What constitutes a successful advertising campaign? One that turns up numbers that were set as goals in some conference room? One that has a clear vision for its message and manages to communicate it effectively through its artistic expression? One whose content and idea resonates with its audience? Or, possibly, one that achieves all of the above?

The answer to this question will most likely vary greatly between people of different backgrounds. However, there is one common factor that is universally acknowledged and that is that what a campaign needs, above all, to be successful, is inspiration.

The Process of Finding Inspiration 

Let’s use Samsonite’s ‘’Travel Like your Parents’ campaign as an example. How did Samsonite come up with the idea for this campaign? Through extensive research regarding the brand’s identity and the relationship between the brand and the average consumer, Samsonite came across very useful intel. By deconstructing their brand’s identity and placing every aspect of it under the microscope, they were able to pinpoint what about the Samsonite name resonates with people.


Another part of this process was conducting interviews with consumers spanning three generations, in order to see the brand through the eyes of potential customers. Of course, any conclusions that were reached during this process weren't of much use if they couldn’t be implemented in the appropriate context. It is one thing to gather accurate information, but it is an altogether different thing to utilise said information properly.

Nostalgia as the Fuel which Drives Engagement

In a stroke of sheer brilliance, Samsonite decided to create their marketing campaign around the feeling of nostalgia. Undoubtedly, one of the most powerful feelings that can be evoked to individuals, as we tend to relish in the memories of an idealized past. Throughout interviews with younger people it was revealed that many of them had associated Samsonite with family vacations and trips. It was their parent’s preferred brand, and therefore it sprang clearly to interviewee’s minds. Essentially, what this meant was that Samsonite had the opportunity to take young adults straight back into their childhood days and older individuals into their 30’s. Doing so would create a clear connection between the brand and euphoric, nostalgic memories of years gone by. 

How the Idea Finally Took Shape

The final product was a thirty-second commercial with a very distinct feel to it. A young woman comes across her father’s hat, which holds an old Polaroid of him. ‘’Your parents weren’t always your parents’’ says the narrator. An idea many of us don’t often have in mind, as our parents have been our parents our entire life. The next scene shows footage of the woman’s parents going on road trips and having the time of their lives in pure 70’s fashion. The narrator continues to share comments about the way life used to be back then ‘’No phones, more connection’’.

So far, the commercial focuses intensely on the concept of freedom, connection and overall, a life free of 21st century issues, creating an association between the brand and a potential improvement within our lives.

 Finally, the montage smoothly transitions into a modern day road trip, including the young woman and a friend of hers. They decided to take a page out of their old men’s book, and have a similar adventure of their own, thus embracing the improvement Samsonite showcased.

The spot ends ideally with the tagline ‘’Samsonite, Travel Like your Parents’’.

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