Rosy retrospection and nostalgia as powerful marketing tools

Reading time: 4 minutes

Did you know that our minds play various tricks on us to alter our understanding and perception of our world? Our brain is so incredibly complex that it can sometimes be our worst enemy. Our brain and its senses are capable of amazing things.

Rosy Retrospection is one of the psychological phenomena that are considered cognitive biases: it refers to a psychological phenomenon that occurs when people tend to remember their past experiences as being more positive, or better than they actually were. However, it also manipulates and misrepresents our understanding of reality, making our lives appear easier and smoother. The effect is a relatively common phenomenon, considered relatively harmless and perhaps beneficial as it makes people happy and more self-confident. Nonetheless, it is critical that people recognize and discredit the tricks our brain employs to misrepresent our views of the world, that can often lead to negative results. People who are able to control their mental processes can can develop stronger interactions, achieve success, and experience more happiness if they can do so.

Why do people experience Rosy Retrospection?

People may experience certain events which bring both positive and negative thoughts to their perceptive minds. Due to some disappointments and lacking control over emotions and feelings, negative thoughts are more likely to end up forgotten, leaving more positive memories of events. In other words, people tend to forget what they are uncomfortable with and detach parts of their lives from their past experiences. This can be explained by cognitive dissonance theory: when an individual’s behaviour conflicts with his or her thoughts and beliefs, psychological tension is created. People try to justify their past actions to save their view of themselves or they might modify memories, making themselves more pleasant and the surroundings more positive.

Rosy Retrospection and nostalgia in marketing

People who experience rosy retrospection often have a natural tendency to view their past experiences through rose-colored glasses, which can result in an exaggeration of the positive aspects of their memories and a minimization of the negative ones. This bias can have a significant impact on consumer behavior and decision-making in marketing aspects, as it can affect people’s purchase decision-making process. Companies might use rosy retrospection to sell nostalgia-themed products or to evoke positive emotions associated with past experiences to encourage customers to buy their products. It is often used to create a strong emotional connection with customers and establish brand loyalty. However, it is important for companies to use it ethically and not to manipulate customers’ memories or emotions. By evoking positive memories and emotions associated with past experiences, companies can create a sense of nostalgia that can inspire customers to buy their products. For example, a food company might use rosy retrospection by marketing its products as being the same as the ones people enjoyed when they were growing up, tapping into the positive memories people have of that food from their childhood. Similarly, a clothing company might market its products as being similar to the clothes people wore during their formative years, capitalizing on the positive feelings people associate with that period of their lives. Moreover, rosy retrospection is used to promote products and services that are designed to recreate a nostalgic experience, such as vintage cars, classic movies, or retro video games. By marketing these products as being representative of a simpler and more enjoyable time, companies can tap into the positive emotions associated with those experiences and encourage customers to purchase. However, while rosy retrospection can be a useful tool for marketers, it is a must to use it ethically and not to manipulate customers’ memories or emotions. Companies must be transparent about their products and services and not make false claims about their ability to recreate nostalgic experiences. In order to harness the power of nostalgia in marketing. the following tactics may be practiced by marketing experts:

  • Researching and listening to the audience and customers
  • Being on time and accurate in production and utilizing marketing tools to arouse people’s attention and emotion towards the expected product. For example, music can play a huge role in making customers feel nostalgic as certain music can evoke feelings and specifically good feelings and happy memories associated with personal status in the past can be manipulated ethically.

In conclusion, the Rosy Retrospection effect, a psychological phenomenon, is a powerful tool for marketers looking to create an emotional connection with customers and build brand loyalty. As our brains play clever techniques on us and cause us to develop a myriad of mistaken beliefs for a variety of reasons. These manipulations frequently frustrate us in our daily lives. These tricks, in contrast, have been intended to help us better understand life and survive the various challenges that life throws at us.

Di Nishara C. Perera


Downey, J. (2019, April 19). Naimonet. Retrieved from 9 Examples of Rosy Retrospection:

Propelrr. (2022). Properllrr. Retrieved from

Travers, M. (2021, jan 20). Psychology today. Retrieved from How to overcome the “rosy retrospection” bias.:


Inserisci i tuoi dati qui sotto o clicca su un’icona per effettuare l’accesso:

Logo di

Stai commentando usando il tuo account Chiudi sessione /  Modifica )

Foto Twitter

Stai commentando usando il tuo account Twitter. Chiudi sessione /  Modifica )

Foto di Facebook

Stai commentando usando il tuo account Facebook. Chiudi sessione /  Modifica )

Connessione a %s…

Crea un sito web o un blog su