Case study of how a nostalgia marketing campaign can engage fans

Nostalgia Marketing Campaign Gets Fans Talking

Nostalgia marketing is when old ideas are used to create feelings of comfort and connection with the audience. In the case of this band, they used a retro video game to engage fans and get them talking. Keep reading to see just how successful it was!

Major record label, Interscope Records, needed to create a compelling and interactive album launch for their best-selling artist.

As fans of early video games like Donkey Kong, the Interscope Records team wanted to re-create a retro video game challenge on social media channels.

This nostalgia marketing campaign featured a retro video game to engage fans

An example of the kind of welcome screen fans would get upon entering the campaign.

Increase Fan Engagement with Nostalgia Marketing

Fans around the world signed in using their social networks and completed a variety of activities like:

  • watching a video on YouTube,
  • sharing three favorite lyrics over Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram,
  • listening to the band’s music on Deezer or Spotify,
  • purchasing the new album,
  • and more campaign actions.

Many of these were custom activities created via the API or through the AE dashboard. Any campaign-related activity can be stored and tracked using AE and integrated with third-party services like Shopify or MailChimp.

This is how the leaderboard that tracked fan activity in the campaign

This is how the leaderboard and activity feed would look to a participant in the game/contest.

At any time, fans could see how many points they’d earned and their overall ranking. And by displaying these stats just like an arcade machine scoreboard, they again integrated nostalgia marketing. This visible, real-time score-keeping kept fans competitive and engaged, powering a successful and highly interactive campaign.

As a result, Interscope saw a massive increase in fan engagement, gained thousands of valuable insights, and saved countless hours of manual tracking.

Here’s the breakdown of what the campaign achieved.


  • A major increase in fan engagement compared to previous social campaigns
  • Over 510,000 fan activities recorded
  • 300% customer acquisition increase over the month-long campaign
  • No false-positives with real-time scoring of submissions
  • No “gaming the system” with automatic enforcement of limits
  • Saved 1000s of hours of tracking, compiling and ranking fan activity
  • Actions tracked in real-time & displayed on-site within the hour

The use of nostalgia marketing was only one element that made this campaign a success. To effectively engage fans across multiple platforms and track their activity, they needed the ability to gather and sort massive amounts of data. This is where AE came in.

AE tracks fans’ behavior on every major social network, allowing labels like Interscope to effectively target their customers with personalization, loyalty and reward programs, recommendations and gamification.

If you’d like to start building similar campaigns and tracking your artists and fan behavior across all platforms like Spotify, Facebook, Twitter, Deezer and more, click here to check out our plans!

<a href="" target="_self">Annabel Youens</a>

Annabel Youens

I'm a co-founder and CMO at AE. I believe that truly successful internet businesses have to connect people. {wave} When I'm not online I'm exploring beautiful Vancouver Island. Things I love: everything scifi, literary fiction, coffee, YouTube Music, my workhorse sewing machine and board games.