5 Things Bloggers Can Learn from Don Draper

We're fans of Mad Men here at IFB (but thank GAWD I didn't have to dress up as a Mad Men zombie! Zombies terrify me!). While I'm a huge Joan Holloway lover, I can't help but be a fan of Don Draper, the mysterious, brilliant, and conflicted mind behind the hit show.


  • Being the best and brightest means generating new ideas and providing something others can't.  Draper makes Sterling Cooper one of the most successful ad firms in New York- enough so that he becomes a partner.  His insight, intelligence and quick mind are an asset to the company.  Provide your readers with something they can't get anything else– your unique insight & perspective.
  • Share what you need to and nothing more.  Don's a man with many skeletons in his closet–including not even being Don Draper! As bloggers, our personal touch is what makes us stand out against other sites.  Be careful not to overshare, and remember it's okay to keep parts of your life private if they aren't pertinent to your blog.
  • Great copy can sell the world.  Are you a great writer? No? Well, then work on it.  As a blogger words are your primary tool and in each post we're trying to sell something–whether it's the great sunglasses of the season, how to love ourselves better, or our own style.  You're going to need words beyond awesome, stunning, sparkly, genius, and fab to sell each post.  Invest in yourself, your thesaurus, and a handful of great writing resources.  Don has a magical way of coming up with beautiful catchphrases and expressions for each client, and when he can't do it– Peggy can.
  • Surround yourself with talented people.  Don recognized Peggy had an ability beyond a simple secretary, and she worked her way up to copywriter.  Don recognizes that Pete Campbell's an excellent Account Executive, despite his dislike for Campbell.  We can't do all of the work by our self, but we can find amazing and capable people to help us out.
  • Know your market, or “what women want.”  What makes Don the best Creative Director is his ability to get in the minds of consumers.  Whether it's a woman entertaining guests, a man trying to seduce women, selling the idea of family or the fantasy of luxury hotels, he has insight in to what people want.  How well do you know your readers? What do your readers want? Can you anticipate the types of posts they'll respond to and be interested in, anticipate their needs and desires?


Don Draper is an extraordinary character whose creativity and business style is endless.  Anything else you think we bloggers can learn from Don Draper?


[Images sourced from here, here and here.]

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12 Responses

  1. Cherry Monster Fashion

    I’d say Don Drapper has a “frankness” about him. He expresses how he feels when it comes to his job and gives his honest opinion. He challenges people and himself too. I think that as bloggers we have an obligation to put our own voice in what we do,and be true to what we like and don’t like in terms of fashion. Whether it be writing or taking pictures and even going to events we should put our best foot forward.

    • Kate heimann

      Hey cherry u are so right as bloggers we need to stay true to our tastes and stand up about our likes n dislikes of the fashion trends and practices – well said!

    • Ashe

      Love that, Cherry Monster! He really does have a frankness to him, and while you may hate him in the moment for what he may say, there’s something really refreshing about it.

  2. Kate heimann

    Ashe this is a fantastic post o the real life adaptations we can take from the hardworking donald draper. Although i might discourage the other character traits and habits we have come to accept and maybe even love him for ( solcializing with many women, enjoying a drink first thing in the morning, and of course his many disappearing acts he does so well!) i love that you were Ble to take this show and turn it into a great bloggers resource. Great work! Feel free to check out my blog too: wearinla.com thanks!

  3. lisa

    Great tips, Ashe. I love this sort of IFB post: it taps into my pop culture obsessions while providing useful advice. (Kind of like the Regina vs. Cher post a while back.)

    • Ashe

      Thanks, Lisa! They’re really fun to write, so I love hearing that others get a kick out of reading them and that they’re helpful!

  4. Rich Girl

    Great post! I just realized that I have no idea what my readers want. And the worst part is that I don’t even know how to find out what they really want and expect from my blog.

  5. style-delights

    The first thing that comes to my mind about Don is that how confident he is of himself. Even when he doesn’t have a ready copy or idea, he enters the room for client meeting with such sure strides that you convince yourself to just BELIEVE in him!!
    I have read countless fashion blogs where the blogger’s style/article/tips are neither interesting nor genuine, but the self confidence shining thru makes the post great to read and I come back to the blog again next day! For me the assuredness of your content and the personal spin you give to existing idea makes a blog successful!