Here’s a recipe for you:
2 parts goofy plot line
1 part mixology how-to
A dash of pretty dancing girl
Combine together in a “swank pad” and download.
What you get is a delicious mostly-monthly treat called Tiki Bar TV, one of the web’s most well-known video podcasts.
The Tiki crew has been amassing viewers since the show’s 2005 premiere. But as we’ve discussed before, viewers don’t necessarily equal dollars. This was the case for Tiki Bar until recently when they inked their first ad deal. The deal, however, is not with a liquor advertiser – the seemingly most appropriate fit.
“Liquor was always discussed as being the perfect match,” said Jeff McPerson (aka Dr. Tiki, the lab coat-sporting libation physician). “Liquor advertisers are pretty particular and don’t like their products associated with actual drinking.”
Jeff is referring to the Code of Responsible Practices for Beverage Alcohol Advertising and Marketing, a verbose set of commandments put fourth by the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (or DISCUS).
While advertising within content that depicts drinking is not explicitly prohibited by the code (although depicting Santa Claus in a booze ad is), Tiki Bar‘s content may be pushing the limits of “responsible consumption”, which is enough to keep Mr. Walker and Mr. Cuervo away.
With this limitation, one would assume that the Tiki team wouldn’t have the luxury of being picky. Not so much. In November of 2005, they were approached by an ad agency representing Girls Gone Wild. They were offered an attractive sum for running the ad plus kickbacks for sales resulting from the campaign. ‘”I’m not interested in working with these guys.” Jeff responded to the ad agency, “I think they went to jail. Bad vibes.” And that was that.
Two and a half years and several near-deals later, Tiki Bar TV finally has a sponsor: Spike TV. The dude-targeted TV network bought time before and after Tiki Bar episodes to promote their new comedy, Factory. The deal, orchestrated by Wizzard Media, also includes a space for “bonus footage” on Wizzard.tv.
The Spike ads will only appear in two episodes, as Factory premieres this Sunday. Producer Tosca Musk said that they’ve “been getting a lot of good feedback” on the ad and they’re currently working on closing another ad deal with a running shoe brand.
Jeff sees this as a triumph not just for his show but for the medium as a whole. “It’s not just GoDaddy and Audible that want to advertise in podcasts anymore… there was talk of podcasting being the guerrilla to television and one day we’ll go to them, but now they’re coming to us.”
It’s great to see one of the best original web shows see some paydays.