If you want to see how advertising agencies worked in the past, you should watch Mad Men. This wildly popular show has a huge following, and you can learn about the world of advertising by watching Donald Draper.
Mad Men is set from 1960 to 1969, and takes place at the Sterling Cooper Ad Agency located in New York City. It focuses on Donald Draper (played by John Hamm) of the Sterling Cooper Ad Agency. He is the best advertising executive in the office, and you can learn a lot by watching how he works with his clients, and in his advertising campaigns.
The plot of this show focuses on the advertising agency business, as well as the characters at the agency, and their personal lives, depicting changing social customs and changing moods of America during this time.
Focus On the Need
A new client may approach an advertising agency to brand their product or for a new logo. Donald Draper knows that people should focus on more than what the client asks for, but also identify the need behind the need.
For example, if a client comes to the agency looking for IT or branding support, they may be having a hard time getting their business started, or they may be having IT issues.
Recognizing the client's need allows a company to provide them with the service or product best for them. It also shows customers the agencies know what they are doing.
Mix Things Up
It is not easy to sell a service or product to the public. In many cases, it can take years to determine that something is not working, which wastes time. Donald Draper teaches that you should mix things up if something is not working for you, and try a different technique. In many cases, things will fall into place, and you will come up with a successful ad campaign.
In Season One of Mad Men, Donald Draper created an ad campaign for Kodak. He used a carousel slideshow showing pictures of things like fathers and daughters at the park, a mother and child, children and their dog, a husband and wife, and more. This showed Kodak they should tap into the minds and hearts of the people instead of showing them the selling points of their product.
Use Face to Face Communication
A direct response advertising agency of today use technology to communicate with their clients, such as email, texting, and video chats. This is very helpful for businesses, as it is an easy way to stay in touch with their clients.
Many professionals have forgotten about the importance of face to face communication, however. Watching Mad Men, they took clients out to lunch and dinner, had in-person meetings, etc. Sitting with a client and looking them in the eye when trying to strike a deal is much better than "talking" to them through email, texting, etc.
The final season premiere of Mad Men is later this year, so you still have time to plunge into their world. If you work in advertising or plan to, you should take the time to watch this show.