Corporate Vlogs are the future of PR (or "monitzed marketing: the best marketing dollar you never spent")

A high-profile journalist just asked me “what does this have to do with user guided search?” when I told them about the search for a new host for Mahalo Daily.

This is an excellent question.

Many people have speculated that I’m just wasting venture capital money on Mahalo Daily, or that I’m secretly transitioning to film (a rumor that has been played up since I’ve appeared in three indie films–two that are coming out in the next year).

Nope, I have a theory: Corporate vlogs are the future of PR.

This is, of course, the same theory that many of us had in 2004 with regard to blogging. Back then it seemed insane that someone like Mark Cuban would blog about running the Dallas Mavericks–now it seems rather obvious.

The chart above shows the number of views to Mahalo Daily videos. Since inception we’ve had over 4M views to our videos, and last month we broke the 1M mark. Mahalo Daily videos are intended to:

  1. Entertain people
  2. Inform people
  3. Represent and build the Mahalo brand
  4. Be a creative outlet for the Mahalo team

The order above is very important.

We conceived of a general interest show which first and foremost is *entertaining* to the viewers. If it is not entertaining you have no audience. After you make it entertaining it’s virtuous for the user to get something out of the show. It could be information on how to become a pilot, speak french, or flirt. Of course, it might not be informative at all and just be fun, like I’m Gonna Get you Spamma.

The Mahalo team has a blast writing, directing, and acting in these videos–it’s a ton of fun. I love it every time they write me a part.

Four million views means millions of folks (let’s say two million) have come in contact with the Mahalo brand. If you were to pay for four million 15 second spots on the web the cost would be $25 for each 1,000 views–or $100,000. That’s about what we’ve spent on the show over the first six months. Additionally, the shows have archival value and will get another 2-4m views over their life I’m sure.

In other words, the Mahalo Daily will pay for itself fairly easily after one year. A $250,000 investment in the Mahalo Daily a year will bring in–if the growth continues–somewhere between 15-30M viewers a year.

Now, the other piece to this is that we’re ALREADY getting significant advertising interest in the Mahalo Daily. So, next year we might actually have the show be profitable!

That’s what I call monitzed marketing: marking that makes you money.

In another three years every company will have not only a corporate blog but a corporate vlog. The New York Times, JetBlue, American Express, and Apple will communicate with their leading customers with regular videos.

Oh wait, Steve Jobs does this already with his keynotes. ;-)

You can subscribe to Mahalo Daily on iTunes and YouTube

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On Monday we will start airing the search for a new host for Mahalo Daily…. we’re going to narrow down 12 possible hosts to one. It’s going to be epic as you will see in this video!