In recent years, there has been renewed interest around the world in branding that evokes nostalgia. There are probably hundreds of long-gone or hard-to-find brands, products and businesses that trigger happy memories and remind us of “back in the day.” Mainstreet.com
- Woolworth’s: Died in 1997. Are you old enough to remember eating at the Woolworth lunch counter? Sure you want to admit that?
- McCall’s Magazine: 135 years as a ladies publishing institution until Rosie O’Donnell drove it off a cliff in 2005.
- Tab Diet Cola: Launched in 1963 to tremendous success. Then in the early 80’s, the saccharin cancer scare (later debunked) hurt sales, and Coca-Cola concentrated on launching Diet Coke. Tab is still around but really hard to find. There is a fan site that can help, though.
- Pan Am Airlines: Gone for over 20 years now, Pan Am practically invented “classic” air travel. The jumbo jet, computerized reservations, and serving meals (now known as a bag of peanuts.) Given what an unbearable pain in the butt it is to fly these days, this particular bit of nostalgia is easy to understand!
So, the moral here is that whether they go out of business, or shrink to insignificance, these brands never truly die. Nostalgia keeps them alive in our consciousness. And sometimes that can lead to rebirth. For instance…
Amiga PC’s: Launched in ’85 and eventually driven out by Microsoft and Apple. But geeks loved ‘em so much there are still a half-million in use. Some super nerds have even started a company to produce brand new look-alike machines with all new software!
So, which brands do you remember? Which would you like to see reborn? There’s plenty more in the original article!