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Imagine if Don Draper time traveled from the 1960s to today. What would he think?

Since he’s a marketer, he wouldn’t have time to think, he’d need to dig right in and figure out the new landscape. Any viewer of Mad Men knows that a major theme of the show was the evolution of advertising.

Don Draper would be used to the research involved before kicking off each campaign, although he’d likely be flabbergasted by the real-time metrics and lead-scoring that marketing today requires. 

Without missing more than 10 beats, Don Draper could be back at work. Within 10 minutes, he’d be up to speed with modern marketing if he spent a couple minutes on each of the following sites and channels surveying this new era.

Of course, he might need an extra minute to figure out his username and password and figure out that SIRI isn’t going to make him a drink.

What Is Modern Marketing?

Don Draper wouldn’t know what the internet is. He’d have no understanding of what inbound marketing, or modern marketing, is, although he’d have a thorough understanding of outbound marketing or the opposite of modern marketing. He’d now hear terms like:

  • SEO
  • Social Media
  • Content – Blogging, premium offers, webinars, podcasts, etc.

But he’d have no clue what they actually are.  On the other hand, what he thinks of as just advertising is now considered outbound marketing. 

He’d hear terms like:

  • Television and radio commercials
  • Magazine ads
  • Billboards

While outbound marketing is still a viable and often necessary and even cost-effective way to market, it now needs to be combined with a digital strategy behind it. Don Draper will need to consider that while a television commercial on the local news will have X number of impressions that will deem it affordable, the corresponding inbound campaign, which will have considerably fewer impressions will be highly targeted.

He'll have to realize that a modern marketing strategy isn't about how many eyeballs see something it's which eyeballs see it. He'll have to realize that with this new approach that creativity is still important, but highly resourceful, educative material has to be available behind to the witty slogans to draw people in.

Once he has an understanding of the different marketing material that is utilized online, which he'll quickly realize is highly interactive, compared to marketing materials that are used for outbound campaigns, which are not interactive at all, he'll then need to start understanding terms like SEO and social media and their relevance to modern marketing.

One thing that hasn’t changed in marketing is whiskey. So he’d pour himself one and hopefully gain access to the following resources which will teach him why inbound marketing, with its quieter approach, is a better lead producer than its outbound cousin because it markets to the right audience, not to anyone within ear or sight distance.

He'll find out that in some cases the lines between inbound and outbound marketing are actually quite gray, which will make learning easier. Above all, he'll find out that success is easier to track with inbound marketing, which will make it easier to sell to and retain new clients.


Modern marketing begins and ends with Google.  Anyone new to modern marketing should first begin with the search engine that is going to make you or break you.  After testing out a few keywords and seeing what comes up, he should have a pretty good idea of the direction he needs to be going.


To understand modern marketing, he must start with YouTube.  The only problem with YouTube is that he’d likely be addicted and spend much more than his allotted 10 minutes on it.  On YouTube he’d be able to check out what new video marketing looks like, he’d be able to see how bands begin marketing music before an album is set to release and he’d be able to see the evolution of television commercials, that are now housed online.


Getting a grasp on the big three social media sites is vital to understanding marketing today.  Sure, Instagram, Snapchat, Pinterest, Periscope and Tumblr are important to the modern marketer, you have to start somewhere and move up.

Since Don Draper is trying to learn modern marketing in 10 minutes,Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn are where he should begin.  He should follow his favorite brands, most of which are still around, and see what they’re doing today. 

HubSpot Marketing Blog

Granted, reading a blog takes a little time, Draper is already up to speed on social media and the extreme of digital marketing, now it’s time to spend a second or two digging into the nitty-gritty of modern marketing. HubSpot’s Marketing Blog features more writers, more ideas, and more articles than any blog out there on the subject of modern marketing.  Speed reading a few of these posts would go a long way toward learning modern marketing.

PR Toolkit

Wait a second, why would someone who is trying to get up to speed on modern marketing as quickly as possible go to a PR site?  Because modern marketing and PR have evolved from first cousins to brother and sister.

The PR Toolkit has many expert contributors who write about both PR and content marketing as well as how they relate. If a content marketing team isn’t investing in a press release campaign, they’re not fully realizing their SEO potential. The PR Toolkit will help cross-pollinate Draper in a matter of seconds.

The Beginner's Guide to Becoming an Analytics Expert

Getting found on search engines and social media is only half the battle with modern marketing. Proving its success or learning how to be more successful is the other half. In the article, The Beginner's Guide to Becoming an Analytics Expert Draper will gain access to a world of reporting and analysis that isn't available in traditional marketing. 

While getting a grasp of online resources is the quickest and most efficient way to get up to speed with modern marketing, realistically, modern marketing takes, at least, an afternoon to fully grasp the concept. The next four resources are a little bit deeper of a dive into modern marketing.


EContent is an online magazine that covers everything there is to know about digital marketing. Whether you're looking for in-depth analysis or tips and tricks, EContent has everything a modern marketer needs to know.

Draper is used to telling stories in a short amount of time, such as in a commercial.  Modern marketing allows for a brand’s story to be told over a longer period of time over different mediums. He should read "StoryBranding: Creating Standout Brands Through the Power of Story" by Jim Signorelli, which explains six steps to telling your brand's story.

Duct Tape Marketing Podcast

Since Draper will likely have to multi-task to learn modern marketing as hastily as possible, having theDuct Tape Marketing Podcast on will enlighten him on many cutting-edge modern marketing techniques and concepts.

HubSpot Academy

After he has a thorough understanding of the concepts and theories of modern marketing he should then gain a formalized education, inbound style, meaning online. HubSpot Academy has courses and certifications for every level of marketer.

I imagine Don Draper would walk out of his office after 10 minutes with these resources and revolutionize marketing, once again. If you’re new to marketing you can expect to get up to speed on modern marketing in a paltry 10 minutes utilizing these resources. Just don’t call yourself an expert quite yet. Give yourself at least a half hour for that.


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Guest Author

Guest Author

Revenue River often times will publish posts from guest authors who are either looking to start a career in the inbound marketing field or have valuable expert insight from experience within different areas of the industry. To learn more about a specific guest author, look for a short bio at the bottom of every article written.

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