Marketing Mad Men

MM3-PosterHow do you advertise and market a classy television drama about advertising and marketing? 

Carefully and with great consideration. 

Linda Schupack, head of marketing for AMC, heeds the advice of Mad Men’s own Don Draper. 

“Advertising is based on one thing: happiness,” Draper would implore his Sterling-Cooper charges. 

It’s also about enticement

The theme of season three is change. “We wanted our key art to be more high-concept,” Schupack explained, unveiling the new poster, which hits this week: Draper is sitting in his office, looking nonchalant, as water rises up to his knees. The image was devised by the Refinery, a Burbank ad agency that beat out three other firms. Schupack flipped through a binder of rejected ideas: Draper at an office party (“too kitschy”), Draper trapped on an ice floe (“too obvious”), Draper getting sucked into a vortex (“too end-of-the-world”). Once the final concept had been chosen, a replica of Draper’s office was built on the Paramount lot and filled with water, and Hamm posed in it for two hours. Earlier in the week, Schupack had taken a copy of the poster out to the sidewalk, to see how it would look in bright sunlight, and a security guard had weighed in: “He goes, ‘That’s how I feel sometimes! I’m just sitting in my office, totally unaffected, and the waters are rising around me.’ ” Season three also has a catchphrase: “The World’s Gone Mad.”

Mad Men returns to AMC on Sun., Aug. 16, at 10PM | 9C

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