October 10, 2020

I’ve got a 10 minute video to share with you this week which I delivered two years ago…and it’s still very timely today.

Actually it will be timely forever.  I’ll explain.

Fundamental marketing principles haven’t changed much over the past two years, despite what you might hear from your “friendly funnelers” or “pandemic pivoters.”

And I am not criticizing those folks when I say that.

On the contrary, the best-in-class funnel experts, pivot-conscious marketers (and all marketers for that matter) will readily admit they innovated (and invented) their funnels, pivots (or anything) based on the fundamentals of human behavior (through audience, offer and message).

For that I applaud them.

That’s why they are best-in-class.

These fundamentals haven’t changed over the last 2 years, 20 years or 200 years.

Humans are still humans today with the same behaviors as humans of the recent and distant past.

I also understand that there is now an infinite amount of technology powering and accelerating buying behavior in the marketplace today. But the basic behaviors of what makes humans tick has not changed.

Example #1: The “funnelers” understand how sophisticated automated funnels work…and also they understand hybrids of automated and personal funnels…and everything in-between. All based on past purchases and behavior. You know, RFM (Recency, Frequency, Monetary).

They test with accuracy, in real time and with measurable results to determine what a winner is and what a loser is…no matter how much wizardry is needed.

That’s fundamental…statistically significant testing and using RFM effectively (plus the wizardry to get it done faster and more efficiently).

Example #2: As I outlined in Information…inspiration…or just lunch,(alternate subject line, Is it live or is it Memorex?), those who have pivoted from live events to virtual events over the past year knew all the techniques of how to enroll an audience live (i.e. from a stage using direct response principles)…and the adaptation to virtual was virtually seamless  (pun intended). Same techniques, different platform.

And also fundamental in terms of what the audience wants, what offers make them most responsive with copy (and scripts) that bring it all together.

Back to the video I want you to watch right now (did I tell you that it is only 10 minutes)? 🙂

My question once you watch it:

Any of the 7 you don’t agree with? Why?

I promise to respond to all the emails you send to me–personally.

No automated funnel.

Here’s the background on this video:

If you are not familiar with the TV series Mad Men I definitely recommend a binge watch at some point…especially the first few seasons.

The show centers around the advertising industry of the 1960’s, which was as much about male chauvinism, chain smoking and three martini lunches as it was about the creation of memorable ads we still marvel at today.

It was a colorful time filled with legendary advertisements and advertisers.

However, the work was more about “image” or “general” advertising (i.e. ads geared to brand building, publicity, public relations) as opposed to what we have come to know today as measurable, direct response marketing.

No websites on their ads…and not much in the way phone numbers either. The toll free number wasn’t invented until 1967.

But if you were practicing (or even dabbling) in direct response at the time (when it didn’t have a “label” yet), you were ahead of your time.

You could add a coupon, a “toll” phone number to an ad (paid by the prospective buyer)…or some call to action (when there were very few around).

These guys were the Mad Pioneers.

Among the “mad men” of the 60’s (and also some from previous decades), there was a select group of “direct marketers trapped in general advertiser’s bodies.”

These were the anti-madmen (whether they knew what a “Mad Man” was or not).

Six of the maddest became legends in addition to being pioneers, beginning in the 1920’s and extending into the 1990’s.

They were the maddest because they refused to succumb to the advertising around them and it’s why they were chosen to be profiled in my first book, The Advertising Solution  (written with my good friend Craig Simpson).

This 10 minute video  is a presentation I originally delivered at the Genius Network Mastermind and in it, I share one eternal truth of direct response advertising from each of the 6 legends (unfortunately none are still with us) …with a bonus lesson.

Maybe you’ve heard them all before; maybe you haven’t.

Note: They have many other pearls of wisdom in their tool kits besides these 7…you can trust me on that.

These are some of their greatest hits which I chose for this presentation/video. See the P.S. to receive many others.

As you will also see below, the presentation is part of the I Love Marketing podcast series hosted by two of my friends and heroes, Dean Jackson and Joe Polish.

I hope something in this talk resonates with you…and your feedback is welcome (and encouraged).

I really would like your input…just email me…specifically if you think any of these 7 lessons are obsolete.

If so, I will need to begin revising the book (and update this speech). 🙂

Regardless of what you think, I love “my mad men”… and I think you will too.

Here is the “10 Minute Talk”:



P.S. If for some reason you do not have a copy of my two books, The Advertising Solution and Overdeliver, what are you waiting for? 🙂

For each book I created a page where you can download (and even print some stuff as well) phenomenal bonuses such as:

  • Rare swipe files
  • Videos not available anywhere else with the greats of direct marketing
  • Priceless content–including PDF’s of classic books no longer published
  • Interviews with legends over the last century
  • Video of courses and live events that are all as valuable today as they were when originally written or recorded

For The Advertising Solution (with many more secrets from the 6 legends I talked about in the video), plus the bonuses, follow the instructions at:


For Overdeliver, plus even more bonuses, go to:


Both books are under $20…and for that sum, you will have access to hundreds (even thousands) of Solutions in your marketing library for a lifetime, Over-Delivered to you the only way I know how to deliver anything.

P.P.S. I received more comments, feedback and ideas from last week’s post. Surviving your library (alternate subject line, Confessions of a slow reader),than I have in a very long time.

I will gather many of those for a future post…I knew this online family would have a lot to say about that one.

Thank you for responding and sharing your wisdom!

About the author 

Brian Kurtz

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