Is it what you remember? | An assessment of Nostalgia.

What is the price of nostalgia? Honestly I believe that it is one of the most valuable commodities there is. Every day there must be thousands of people making decisions purely due to nostalgia. The question is why is this such a valuable commodity?

To start I will focus on what I have experienced. Over on my Instagram @Destrola, I release a new design every day. From what I have found when I incorporate some level of nostalgia in my design there is a much larger interaction then if the subject matter was “new”. I believe this is because people feel more comfortable with things they know, a quick twitter hashtag search will show me that something like #pokemon had 12 posts in the last minute. If we take that as an average then per day that would give 17280 posts a day. Now understanding that is an example and not accurate it is still enough to gather the concept of this value. Yet people still wonder why something like PokemonGO had huge success right out the gate.

The thing is that if you want an audience it is much easier to go after a pre-existing one then forge a new one. Could you gain far much more success with creating a new one, absolutely but chances of you doing that are much less then if you went after a pre-existing one. There are cultures dedicated to singular subjects and will actively search for them. If you make for them then chances are they will find you because you are like them, you care about their subject as well.

I will recommend not arguing with these people however as they can be very stubborn. Let me share a story, I was talking with a friend the other day and the concept of buying a physical version of a game vs a digital one came up. I personally love digital because it is easier to deal with, I don’t have to store random cases, books, etc.

Either way to him this seemed like I spat at his feet. Majority of the arguments he came up with after that were linked to nostalgia. The smell of the booklet, the feeling of opening the case for the first time, even to go as far and say that it reminds him of his childhood. It’s a defence, people don’t adapt to change well so when you try and change their history then it will be an uphill battle. This isn’t to say that it wouldn’t be worth it but chances are it will suck the whole way. We are built to defend our own so why not help people defend it?

Sure, there are tonnes of other ways to connect and sell to people. If you can make a niche and have control of it then you can build an empire. You will have 100% of all the people wanting that. The thing is people are complex and will always want more then one thing. In addition most people can look back at their history towards good times and relate that to a certain subject.

So is nostalgia the only commodity that matters? Absolutely not, but it is a huge one that I believe can hold the greatest value. Nostalgia will always be around, everyone has a past. The question is what will you do about this?

Originally published at on October 31, 2016.