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4 ‘Mad Men’ Personalities You Want On Your Modern Marketing Team

Monday, April 8, 2013

Author: Amanda Batista

Last night season six of AMC’s Mad Men premiered, and we found our favorite advertising hot shots gearing up for many episodes to come of alcohol-infused meetings, meltdowns, and more marketing home runs.

While the marketing edge in the campaigns we see on Mad Men aren’t all that, well, ‘modern,’ some particular personalities at the Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce agency clearly outshine the rest, because they understand how to deliver on a dime. Today’s B2B marketers are encouraged to think like agencies to be more collaborative and agile to enhance marketing creativity.

Last week we talked about how titles like Content Curator, Social Media Expert and Data Scientist are emerging in the Modern Marketing landscape. Though it’s just a bit too soon to tell what kind of charades will go down this season on Madison Avenue, we couldn’t miss out on the opportunity to think back on how the characters have evolved, and how some of their attributes are easily applicable to these emerging marketing roles and titles.

Here are some personality traits that your Modern Marketing team could stand to benefit from:

The idea machine: The patriarch of smooth advertising, Don Draper is a natural leader and organic thinker, who is often referred to as “poetic” or “genius” for his ability to think more creatively about the impact of marketing. While he’s the ultimate man of mystery, he never holds out on sharing the home run ideas on how to deeply resonate with the target audience. You want someone like Don to lean on for consistently creative ideas. He'll keep your programs fresh, engaging, and on point. 

The smooth operator: Cool and collected, even in times of chaos, the firm’s co-founder Roger Sterling understands how to take care of business. He understands the basic principles of effective marketing and his old-school attitude keeps him from ever taking things too personally. And even when he does have to “melt down” he does it behind closed doors, with an open bottle. You want someone like Roger to rally the troops in marketing, and get the necessary teams on board to execute on your program objectives. 

The critical thinker: Always willing to put in any extra legwork, Peggy Olson evolved from a secretary, to a copywriter, and now she’s even a shot caller. She always seems to pull through in a crisis, and keeps the client’s best interest front and center. You want someone like Peggy who will make you glad you gave her the creative freedom she needs to deliver.

The number cruncher: The eyes and ears of the agency, Joan Harris has kept a mental inventory of the entire agency’s goings on. Though her primary role was to manage the secretarial and steno pool and attend to the needs of the executives, she’s cultivated a greater role in expense and account tracking. You want someone like Joan to take care of the administrative tasks that are integral to your organizational alignment. 

*Disclaimer: This light-hearted post was written in good fun, and we certainly don’t realistically suggest seeking or accepting all the attributes of Mad Men misfit characters to work within your organization. If your team drinks, lies, and deceives this much, you’re probably in trouble. 

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