The 10 Best Throwback Thursday Ideas

throwback thursday ideas

Is your small business capitalizing on the Throwback Thursday — aka #TBT — phenomenon? If not, it’s time to join in the race to post nostalgic content to reach out to and strike a chord with followers.

What is Throwback Thursday?

throwback thursday ideas

Throwback Thursday, often abbreviated as #TBT, is a popular social media trend where individuals and organizations post nostalgic content from their past. Typically observed on Thursdays, this trend encourages sharing old photos, stories, and memories.

Throwback Thursday Ideas

throwback thursday ideas

If you’re unsure how to execute a Throwback Thursday strategy, help is here, with the following 10 best Throwback Thursday ideas small businesses are successfully using to celebrate #TBT in 2018.

Share an Event You Hosted a Long Time Ago

Okay, so if you’re a start-up this idea might not be applicable, but if your small business has been going for some time, use the #TBT trend to alert followers of your past events. If you have an image of a past event you are proud of, post the image — on a Thursday of course — with the #TBT hashtag and a brief description of the event.

Posting about past events can be an effective way to gauge interest in a forthcoming event you have by tying past and future events together.

Tweet Old Business Cards

Another popular way to celebrate Throwback Thursday is to post an image of your old business cards. For maximum effect, post the old business card alongside your current business card. This will provide some subtle but effective marketing getting your business in front of anyone searching the #TBT hashtag.

Jessica Borg, a reporter at KHOU, the CBS affiliate in Houston, does just this on Twitter.

Post Baby Photos of Yourself or Employees

throwback thursday ideas

No one can resist looking at baby photos of colleagues or, better still, their boss! Generate interest on your social media feeds by posting Throwback Thursday pictures of you or your colleagues as babies or kids. Garner even greater interest in the posts by asking people to guess who the youngster is.

Highlight a Key Turning Point in Your Business


Share a story or a photo from a time when your business experienced a significant turning point. It could be a major contract you landed, a crucial hire, or even a significant challenge you overcame. This kind of post not only gives a glimpse into your company’s history but also showcases your resilience and growth.

Showcase Retired Products or Services

If your business has been around for a while, chances are you’ve had products or services that are no longer available. Use Throwback Thursday to post about these retired offerings. This can stir nostalgia among long-time customers and also shows how your business has evolved over time.

Share Historical Industry Insights

throwback thursday ideas

Post about how your industry looked when your business started versus how it looks now. This can be an educational and engaging way to highlight industry progress and your business’s role in that evolution.

Celebrate Long-Time Employees

Put the spotlight on employees who have been with the company for many years. Share their pictures from when they first joined and now, along with a brief story about their journey in your company. This not only celebrates your team but also underscores your company’s commitment to its employees.

Here’s a throwback Thursday example on the news:

Throwback to Your First Website

Almost every business starts with a basic website that evolves over time. Share screenshots of your first website compared to your current one. This can be a fun and visually engaging way to show how much your online presence has grown and modernized.

Share Photos of Past Projects Representing Milestones

Show just how much your business has evolved and expanded over the years by posting a Throwback Thursday image of your first office or home office. It doesn’t need to be from a bygone era, as a #TBT post from several years ago can be just as effective.

The social media savvy building company Sundt Construction does just this by tweeting an image of an unused warehouse they converted into new administrative offices for Habitat for Humanities five years ago.

  • Highlight Initial Workspaces: Share photos of where your business started, like a small office or a home setup.
  • Showcase Key Projects Over the Years: Post images of significant projects that marked growth or success milestones.
  • Before and After Transformations: Share photos showing the transformation of workspaces or projects from their inception to completion.
  • Celebrate Partnership Anniversaries: Include images from when you first partnered with other businesses or clients.
  • Acknowledge Major Business Changes: Post about significant changes, like moving to a bigger office or expanding your team.
  • Share Historical Business Moments: Highlight moments in your business history that had a significant impact, like launching a breakthrough product or service.

Repost Old Ads on #TBT

Posting old ads is an incredibly easy and effective way for small businesses to celebrate Throwback Thursday and promote their brand to followers and prospects. Posting old ads that highlight how products have changed or advanced, or how much prices have changed, can be a great way to create nostalgia amongst followers.

Interject Customers into Your #ThrowbackThursday Campaign

As Hootsuite notes, your customers are what it’s all about, “so celebrate them with a throwback to the customers of yesteryear.”

Post images of your customers’ former involvement with your brand, such as using your services or products in past decades and pointing out just how far your products or services have come since then.

Recall a Fun and Relevant Fact About Your Business

throwback thursday ideas

No matter how long your business has been going, it has a history. Capitalize on the Throwback Thursday craze by posting a fun fact about your business, such as how many employees you started out with, or what significant thing happened in the year your business was founded.

Starbucks Coffee makes good use of Throwback Thursday by posting about the good old days — for example when it first opened its first Seattle coffee shop 43 years ago.

Post About Your First Logo

How far has your business logo come over the years? Generate intrigue and interest in your brand by posting images of your first logo alongside a #TBT hashtag. Use the post to show how more stylized and sophisticated your brand has become.

Publish Content About Your First Award

Which year did your business win its first award? Showcase your former awards and just how successful your business has been over the years by celebrating Throwback Thursday with some of these posts.

Veritas Tech APJ does just this, posting a photo of their Geo of the Year Award achievement.

Run a #TBT Contest

Generate maximum social media exposure on a Thursday by running a #TBT contest. Encourage followers to participate in your Throwback Thursday promotion by posting their own #TBT content and giving a freebie or prize to the followers who post the best #Throwback Thursday content.

Throwback Thursday Ideas Summary

Share an EventPost past event images for engagement and history showcase.
Tweet Old Business CardsCompare old and new business cards to highlight brand evolution.
Post Baby PhotosShare employee baby photos for fun engagement.
Highlight a Key Turning PointShare milestones or major changes in your business.
Showcase Retired ProductsPost about discontinued products or services.
Share Historical Industry InsightsContrast past and present industry states.
Celebrate Long-Time EmployeesSpotlight long-serving employees' journeys.
Throwback to Your First WebsiteShow first vs. current website for digital growth.
Share Photos of Past ProjectsPost images of initial workspaces and major projects.
Repost Old Ads on #TBTShare old ads to create nostalgia and brand awareness.
Interject CustomersFeature past customer interactions and relationships.
Recall a Fun FactShare interesting historical facts about your business.
Post About First LogoCompare first and current logos to show brand development.
Publish First Award ContentHighlight the first award your business received.
Run a #TBT ContestEncourage follower participation with a themed contest.

Photo via Shutterstock

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Gabrielle Pickard-Whitehead Gabrielle Pickard-Whitehead is a staff writer for Small Business Trends and has been a member of the team for 7 years. She is based in the United Kingdom and since 2006, Gabrielle has been writing articles, blogs and news pieces for a diverse range of publications and sites. You can read "Gabrielle’s blog here.".