But even with a devoted fan base, Mad Men isn’t exactly a social mediaphenomenon like The Walking Dead or Pretty Little Liars. If Don Draper handled the show’s marketing campaign, it might be a different story.
Even so, Twitter TWTR -0.1% buzz about Mad Men has been escalating leading up to the April 5 season premiere. About a month ago, the show averaged around 2,000 tweets per day, and the number hit around 14,300 daily tweets on March 24th, when news broke that star Jon Hamm had checked out of rehab.
Search is the most predictive digital metric for audiences aged 35 and up, according to Tobi Bauckhage, CEO of Moviepilot, an online platform that empowers film fans to become content creators. Five days leading up to Sunday’s premiere, Mad Men’s search metric had approximately 88,000 searches, which was more than double the volume of fellow April debut Daredevil. Then again, Daredevilis a new show, and it doesn’t have a longtime fan base that is dying to know what becomes of Peggy, Joan, Roger, Pete, Betty, and, of course, Don.
Maybe it’s a nod to Don Draper’s old-school ways (he’s a savant-like ad exec who doesn’t rely on trends to shape his campaigns), but Mad Men has focused on traditional marketing tactics like outdoor ads and media buys on TV, instead of Vine videos and Snapchat gimmicks. Does anyone who watchesMad Men actually use Snapchat? It’s pretty unlikely. It’s not as if the show’s marketing team is clueless when it comes to social media – they use Instagramand Twitter like everyone else – but the majority of the show’s audience probably isn’t staring at Instagram as they watch.
So maybe Mad Men never became a Twitter phenomenon like Pretty Little Liars, but they’re two completely different shows. There could be some audience overlap there, since being well-rounded means you watch both intellectual period dramas and light, campy teen murder mysteries. In the end,Mad Men’s popularity never relied on retweets, and it’ll still go down in history as one of the most accomplished dramas on television, with or without astronomical search numbers.
The true fans will be tweeting their hearts out throughout this final season, and I’ll be on the edge of my seat wondering what in the world is going to become of Peggy. And Joan. And Betty. And Don.
Whatever the final numbers are, there’ll probably be at least a few tweets that read: I wish it didn’t have to end.