The next time you visit a mall, stop thinking about the past because a feeling of nostalgia may prompt you to spend more, says a study.
"We wondered why nostalgia is so commonplace in marketing. One reason could be that feeling nostalgic weakens a person's desire for money. In other words, someone might be more likely to buy something when they are feeling nostalgic," said Kathleen Vohs from University of Minnesota in the US.
To prove their point, researchers conducted six experiments that looked at how much people were willing to spend, donate, and value money when feeling a sense of nostalgia-evoked social connectedness.
In one study, consumers asked to think about the past were willing to pay more for a set of products than consumers asked to think about new or future memories.
Another study showed an increased willingness to give more money (but not time) to others after recalling, reflecting, or writing about a nostalgic past life event.
Additionally, consumers asked to think about a nostalgic event were less willing to endure unpleasant sounds in exchange for a set amount of money than consumers who were asked to think about an ordinary event.
This information is useful to brands looking to elicit feelings of nostalgia in their promotions and product lines as well as charitable and political organisations looking to raise funds for others.
The study appeared in the Journal of Consumer Research.