About Maria Johnson

Maria Johnson
As Vice President, Maria assists with agency operations, office management and accounting functions. Her focus on client relations and eye for accurate detail greatly contributes to Johnson Direct’s ongoing goal of excellence.

A Bit Late To The (Mad Men) Party

Mad Men Cast

With a bit more required rest time due to a shoulder injury, I’ve found myself addicted to the Mad Men series. If you haven’t had the pleasure, let me introduce you: it’s about an ad agency, Sterling Cooper, based in New York during the 60’s. I have made it through half of season 4. Season 6 begins next year. At the pace I am going I won’t have any trouble catching up. I enjoy watching it not only for the drama and interesting characters (Don Draper is one hot tamale). I love seeing what it was like in advertising and marketing back in the day.

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Apple Olympic Ads

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Yesterday my daughter and I were watching the opening ceremony for the Olympics. She asked if the ads for the Olympics were as good as the ones for the Super Bowl. I said I didn’t think so and then fell asleep soon after answering her. Ads for the Olympics cost anywhere between $1 million and $1.5 million depending on length and airing time, while Super Bowl commercial costs are $2.5 million per 30 second increments.

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Giving Back & Paying It Forward

My husband and I were fortunate to be a part of an outstanding awards dinner event recently for The Boys and Girls Club of Milwaukee. Many scholarships were handed out to truly deserving young men and women who have overcame great obstacles. My favorite portion of the evening was a video of kids answering questions like: “Why should people help other people?,” “What advice has been given to you?,” and “What do you want to be when you grow up?” What I heard in response was inspirational. Continue reading


My son’s basketball season ended yesterday and naturally, he was very sad about it. He’s a senior in high school and has played on a team since he was 5 years old. Recently, he was lamenting about all the things he was going to miss and how much of his identity came from being on the basketball team. We are proud of his accomplishments, but remind him; you are a good basketball player but more importantly you are a great person.  This got me thinking about teamwork and all that can be gained from participating on a team.

Some things we learn from teamwork: Continue reading

Advertisements: The Good, the Bad and the Measurable

What makes an ad a “good one?”  Some might argue it’s all about the creativity while others insist it’s whether you remember it hours or even days later. Still more may say it’s whether or not it made them laugh. Here at Johnson Direct, we believe a good ad is one that makes a consumer do what you want them to do, whether it is to visit a web site, become a member or to make a purchase.

There are so many advertising outlets today: television, radio, social media, mail, outdoor, email and even bathroom stalls. This tends to make it harder to determine what’s working and what isn’t. Continue reading