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More often than not, a trip down memory lane or feelings of euphoria, joy, and longing are often associated with everyday elements and things around us, say, a picture, piece of clothing, food item, and, in the case of the ad film in question, a table. A piece of furniture that has stood the test of time and seen the passage of many moments in a house. The emotional and enriching film called The Table made by Greenply, India’s largest interior infrastructure company, shows the piece of furniture bearing witness to the various stages of a family – from starting a family to seeing kids take off to pursue their professional and personal goals and the parents being left to themselves. To add to it, the pandemic has put on hold the occasional family gatherings and celebrations on festivals like Diwali. The film aims to convey the plight of these empty nesters.

‘A thing of the past’

For many families in India and around the world, meals are a momentous occasion, where the full family assembles around the table. Over time, the emotional value attached to these family huddles has started losing its importance. Parents often experience empty nest syndrome and they often try to relive the happy moments with their children through the items at home. In fact, according to Mintel research, more than four-fifths of Indian consumers say they enjoy things that remind them of their past (e.g. childhood). 

Initiating conversations about the mental state of such individuals and reaching out to them is the very basis of the film. The move positions Greenply as a brand that is empathetic to the cause of these individuals. This acknowledgment is a step forward in line with the Mintel TrendWithout A Care’ that highlights the need to take care of the elderly by acting in a timely manner. The trend calls for brands and consumers alike to address this cohort and their possible potential in the upkeep of this age group, before they end up being a burden on the resources. With the observed enthusiasm for learning and adapting among the senior citizens, a lot of opportunities open up for brands. This is also in line with the Mintel Trend ‘Redefining Adulthood’ that highlights how the concept of adulthood has changed and how people are adapting to it in ways. 

Every Star has a Silver Lining

A lot of brands around the world are touching upon the physical, emotional, and sentimental needs of this cohort. Yakult Korea, one of the largest food companies in South Korea, adopted an empathetic attitude towards the elderly suffering from empty nest syndrome. Whilst delivering drinks in rural areas, drivers take up the responsibility of checking up on the elderly, assuaging their consumers about their safety. They are also given free rein to seek medical help whenever necessary.

The exemplary work done by Amazon Prime in India in this regard can’t be forgotten either. On the occasion of Diwali, the OTT platform released ads encouraging phone-addict young Indian viewers to stay away from their app by pausing a binge-watch session to focus on spending time with their loved ones. The ad garnered a lot of traction among the target audience and won plaudits for its simple, heart-touching message.

Online dating app Bumble doled out relationship advice with the help of 65-year-old Poonam Sapra and encouraged both youngsters and the elderly to embrace their feelings. With the pandemic putting a spanner on the plans of many individuals to come home and meet their folks, Poonam Sapra giving advice to them to find new love is the breath of fresh air we wish to see in such turbulent times.

What’s Next

While empty nest syndrome is not yet openly acknowledged in India, brands need to do their bit in bringing realisation that job opportunities for younger people don’t necessarily mean they will abandon their parents. Companies can also encourage the creation of a fund where offspring contribute to a corpus that can be directed towards the care and upkeep of their parents, assuring them they are taken care of. Even the act of reaching out to these empty nesters will go a long way in the success story of a brand looking to strike the perfect balance between work and personal commitments increasing the empathy factor.