Agency Lessons from Mad Men episode 511 – “The Other Woman” – Don’t Be A Pimp

Image from

I haven’t been documenting all of the agency lessons from Mad Men on AMC this season but there was one in episode 511, “The Other Woman,” that I had to touch.

This seems pretty straightforward, “Don’t be a pimp.”  This sounds easy but in the real world we aren’t often asked to have a colleague sleep with a prospective client as was asked of Pete Campbell in regards to Joan Harris to secure the Jaguar account.  We might be asked to do something else that goes against our morals or even just against our gut.

When money is being waved at you, it’s sometimes may seem easy to bend your code to make something happen.  It’s not worth it.  In my experience, it will come back to you. Maybe not right away, but it will bite you.  If you need more support, just listen to the advice of the “narrator,” in “True Romance,” “Every pimp in the world gets shot.”  In this case, given Pete’s foreshadowing with guns this season, I wouldn’t bet against it.

Spellcheck isn’t enough….

It’s always just one more set of eyes that will catch something when you are writing and editing.  So always ask, one more person to take a look at something that has been written.  Spellcheck? No, don’t count on it, as it doesn’t take into account many, many things like if a word is incorrectly spelled but spelled in a way that makes it another word.

In college I took several public relations courses. In one of these classes, we had a final project where we put on a event and “owned,” a theme night at the Stockton Ports, a local minor league baseball team.  As part of the planning, t-shirts were created for “staff,” that included a mention of the class hosting the event, which was the “Public Relations Administration – Spring……”   The shirts were ordered, logos were checked and when picked up the morning of the event read, “Publuc Relations…..”  Now, this was a single line on a busy back of the shirt.  Good? Not even close, but “Public,” has many unfortunate ways it can be incorrectly spelled.

Take a look at the Twitter feed from this weekend from the LBJ School of Public Affairs at UT-Austin:

Wow! What could have prompted that?  One of the other, “unfortunate,” incorrect spellings of “public,”:

Image from

The Kings Know Social Media (the OTHER Kings)

I’ve written before about how the Kings use social media well, with their great use of +1 for information.  This time I’m talking about voice, and the OTHER Kings.  This is the LA Kings.  Now, I’m not a hockey fan, so I haven’t been following the LA Kings Twitter feed, but apparently Deadspin has and they are impressed.  In going to check it out, I am too. The below Tweet and quick comment is from Deadspin.

The fans here look pretty bummed they haven’t been able to wave their pom poms.

— LA Kings (@LAKings) May 16, 2012

This is damn near the perfect tweet. It uses access—a dispatch from a road game—to gently sass the opposing fans.

This isn’t the only on.  This is the latest tweet:

#LAKings have outscored their opponents 37-17 in the #StanleyCup Playoffs (13-5 in the 1st, 13-4 in the 3rd). So there’s that.

It’s got a little attitude, but most importantly they are speaking in a voice the fans can relate to.  That’s what we all shoot for, finding that voice.  According to the article it’s run by “Pat Donahue, 27, the Kings’ digital media coordinator, who co-writes the Twitter account with Dewayne Hankins, 31, the Kings’ director of digital media.”

Pat and DeWayne, take a bow. Everyone else, take notes and follow these guys.

Sacramento relies more on gov’t jobs than any other metro – how do we get past that? HACK!

Sacramento is only 90 miles from the SF Bay Area and Silicon Valley but often seems worlds apart. One of the ways this is most evident is that it seems like everyone here works for government in some way. I thought that maybe this was just my impression, but according to a story today in the Business Journal, it’s true. According to a new study nearly three out of every ten workers in the Sacramento metro area work for state, federal or local government.  While those might unfortunately be growth industries, it’s not the kind of growth that should drive an economy.

What we need in the area are more growth companies.  Now, growth companies are often technology companies and there are many groups in the area that have been trying to nurture this this type of company for awhile including SARTA, SacStarts (my favorite) and the Sacramento Angels.

There’s a new group in town, the Hacker Lab.  On June 2nd and 3rd, they are sponsoring a two day mobile hackathon where teams will cram together and create apps on the fly.   This is awesome, this is what we need. If you can code, go in there, hack, make stuff, and who knows maybe knock us out of that #1 slot that really isn’t helping our local economy.


Watch the complete “Small Market, Big Heart,” Film About the Kings

Last October I mentioned the Small Market, Big Heart film about the Kings and Sacramento and how I had contributed via KickStarter.  The film ran on local TV earlier this year, and it was awesome when I got to see my name listed among the producers, thanks to KickStarter.

Here’s the thing, if you missed it when it ran, don’t worry, you can now watch the entire documentary, including a new epilogue from Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson, on Youtube.

So, now, go watch Small Market, Big Heart.