Want to captivate and convince your audience better? Learn from Don Draper

#Branding #Marketing #Tips

By Taehee Kim Verney-Carron


At Making You Smile, we just cannot get enough of Mad Men. It’s not surprising, given that we all want to channel Don Draper’s creative brilliance.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with it, Mad Men recounts the advertising business of Madison Avenue in 1960’s New York City.

The central character, Don Draper, is an advertising genius. Few of his clients can resist his charisma and his ingenious pitches.

Among them, the Kodak Carousel is often picked as his greatest pitch of all.

Countless articles and posts identify how Don shows that what a company sells is more than a product – it is the story around the product. Or how he understood perfectly that what truly appeals to customers is having a sentimental bond with what they are purchasing, etc.

They’re right.

But to us, the true magic of Don’s pitch starts even before he turns on that projector.

He begins, “my first job, I was an in-house at a fur company.

This old, pro copywriter, Greek, named Teddy.

Teddy told me the most important idea in advertising is new. It creates an itch…

…But he also talked about a deeper bond with the product.

Nostalgia. It’s delicate. But potent.”

As he clicks through a series of photos filled with emotion, he continues, “Teddy told me that in Greek, ‘nostalgia’ literally means the pain from an old wound.”

Imagine that he just started the presentation by saying “in Greek, ‘nostalgia’ means…”

Would it be as absorbing and powerful? We don't think so.

He’s pitching a story - that Kodak could tell in its advertising - by telling a story. A story about Teddy, an imaginary person that Don seems to have invented, and what he learned from him.

Want to captivate and convince your audience better?

Pitch with a story. You’ll get at least twice as much attention and approval from whomever you’re pitching to.

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