What Would Don Draper Do? Sales Lessons from Mad Men

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sales lessons from don draperAre you a fan of Mad Men?  If so, it’s no doubt that you recently watched or recorded the Sunday opener of the final season.  Don’t worry – no spoilers here if you haven’t watched it yet.  However, I do want to take a look back at some of the sales lessons we can learn from the past six seasons.

Emotion plays a role.  At the heart of every Don Draper pitch, he taps into an emotion that sparks action.  He identifies the passion that will ignite the customer to make the desired decision.  He develops messaging that sells beyond the features of the product itself. 

As you craft your next inside sales script or telemarketing campaign, consider how your message moves the customer forward in the sales process.  Even if you think you are in a “boring” industry or B2B sales, it’s very likely there is an emotional aspect to tap into for the sale – your product could make the decision maker a better manager, help her become the office hero, or provide him with a way to improve conditions for his team.

Challenge the status quo.  Have you ever noticed that clients of the fictional ad agency never actually get what they asked for?  They get more than they asked for – or something altogether different than what they thought they needed.  Why?  This is because it is essential to differentiate yourself from the competition and the status quo.  If Draper did exactly what the client requested, he would be easily replaceable with the next ad man.  By demonstrating insight and vision beyond the client’s request, he makes his service unique and practically irreplaceable. Talk about valuable sales lessons.

How does your product or service challenge the status quo?  Develop your sales script in a way that helps your reps demonstrate the power of your product or service in comparison to the competition and the “same old, same old” way of doing things.

Never stop selling.  Remember that episode of Mad Men when Lucky Strike announced that it was leaving the agency after 30 years?  Wow.  Roger Sterling asked for 30 days to give him a little time to find some replacement business.  Sales Lessons 101: It takes longer than 30 days to replace a long-time client.

If you are a sales rep or manager of an inside sales team, you probably never stop selling.  However, there are ways to sell more productively and efficiently.  Consider how your process influences productivity.  If you are using a list-based lead management platform, you place obstacles in the way of productivity – reps have to manually sift, filter, and interact with data before making the next call.  Consider implementing a queue-based lead management software that can increase your productivity by 400%.

Who knew a television show about the 1960s could be so full of sales lessons to modern sales people, eh?  With VanillaSoft, you can put these ideas into practice in your organization with our lead nurturing, scripting, and auto dialing features; or as Don Draper might describe it:  it’s not something you just “use,” it’s lead management software that moves you to achieve your sales goals.  It’s the power of simplicity.

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