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Learning about advertising and marketing from Don Draper on Mad Men

I am seeing a lot of references to the fictional character Don Draper from the TV series Mad Men. I've only seen a couple of episodes of the show, but it all seems so very familiar. And that's because I studied advertising, and marketing, in college.

Understanding advertising and marketing is like knowing what magicians have up their sleeve. It kind'a takes the fun away for some people, I guess. But I wanted to know how it worked, along with everything else that was connected to my chosen career as a Graphic Designer.

If the show Mad Men has got your curiosity up about this thing call advertising, go take a look at what David Ogilvy wrote. Or Jerry Della Femina. What these mad men came up with has not changed for decades. Before them, advertising floundered. After them, they were so good that many people have become convinced that they could sell stuff that people didn't want.

The truth is complicated, and fascinating. I needed to learn this when I was young, just for me. It hasn't made me an expert on advertising, but it has given me true respect for the great masters.