I rather like Milo Yiannopolous.
Not because I necessarily espouse his beliefs but because he’s so damn entertaining and without restraint.
It’s refreshing to see someone intelligently and deftly talk so freely.
Anyways, let’s not talk politics, let’s discuss marketing and Milo’s semi-clever acquisitions (he paid too much) and/or leasing of huge domain names.
Harnessing the Power of Your Own Site
Domain names allow you an unfettered platform; they give you freedom to build your own media portal.
With the rise of social media, people are putting less energy and money into their websites.
Instead, they pivot and drive traffic to their social page/channel on Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr, etc.
Some newer social stars forego their own website altogether. Why pay when you can use all of these platforms for free?
Well there’s a caveat to that $0 price tag: you’re not in control.
The online giants want you to believe you don’t need your own platform and they’ve made it ever so easy to create content on theirs so why bother?
The overarching reason: Again, you have 0 control.
Examples of practical pitfalls to basing camp off another platform:
– Getting stuck with a bad username like /surferguy128 is bad for business
– A “policy change” can dramatically affect how you interact with subscribers (remember when Facebook started charging you to advertise to the very audience you drove to your Facebook page)
– You can get outright banned. Nobody gets banned until they do (remember when Twitter banned Milo?)
– They can put advertising on “your” channel/page; they’re making money off your sweat equity
For these reasons and others, it’s the right move to make a digital flagship independent of any platform; social or otherwise.
Milo Yiannopolous is not only doing that but he’s doing it in grandiose fashion with the premium domain names of Hatred.com and Dangerous.com.
He/his contingency bought Hatred.com for $150,000.
Hatred.com points to his Amazon book page.
Hatred was an impromptu purchase. Someone approached him, he bought it, and he’s at least redirecting it rather than just parking it.
I haven’t seen anything stating that Milo purchased Dangerous.com but that domain resolves to a website with links to his ‘Dangerous’ book and an email subscriber form so he’s putting it to work, albeit minimally, for the time being.
I’d highly recommend using an Amazon affiliate link to track the conversions as well as catch at least a few thousand in cash but maybe there’s an unforeseen reason they’re not.
It’s possible Milo leased Dangerous but he most likely did buy it.
As a related side note, with so much of Milo’s commercial business arising from negativity, he should be aware that he is well positioned for extreme gains on both sides of a domain purchase.
Save Some Money
Negatively charged domain names (even the super premiums) are notoriously difficult for domainers to sell because most companies aren’t antifragile like Milo is and so they’d never even own something as appalling as Hatred.com. This slashes any for sale price.
Had he used a domain name broker, he probably saves $100,000 on that acquisition.
Also, hatred isn’t nearly as good as hate; he should have asked how much for Hate.com while he was at it.
Dangerous has more commercial value since it has more of a wild card appeal. For example, an action movie or TV series could easily be called Dangerous and want that .com. There could also be a clothing brand or something else edgy that could make use of it.
However, again, Dangerous is more limited since a lot less corporations want to be known as dangerous vs. something positive.
Of course, after walking away from the negotiation table, Milo still gets all benefits and upside of marketing a one-word .com.
Hatred.com and Dangerous.com are perfect domains to throw out there during interviews like his recent Alex Jones appearance (as seen above) and/or to use as stepping stone assets in piecing together an independent media empire (which he’s doing).
Even negative connotation names are highly marketable ones – especially for someone like Milo – so if he can start buying cheaper and continue leveraging for his own gain, he’ll win in both directions with low buy-ins and high rewards.
I think Hatred could have been a great acquisition but it ended up being a bad buy. He paid way too much despite the domain making a lot of sense for him generally.
For $25,000-$35,000, then you can stick it in your war chest for later. But to pay 6-figures without having plans for it is a bad business move.
Practically, as much as it sounds good, it’s an asset that may never even up being used.
Dangerous.com is perfect because it has an exact use: Promoting his book which is going to sell like crazy.
No matter what he ends up doing, Dangerous.com can always be an asset for his Dangerous book promotion; it aligns really well and he can drop the name or use it on print media for upcoming interviews, tours, and speeches.
Social platforms like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and possibly others like Pinterest are obviously super powerful when leveraged correctly so they shouldn’t be dismissed.
Rather, they should be discussed in any marketing campaign in terms of how best to leverage them.
In other words, how can we use these social platforms to extract the most gain from them in the light of their particular strengths.
For example, Twitter is excellent for dispensing more frequent updates and news so it might be something to bring in the fold.
But every marketing campaign needs to ultimately root itself in promoting a website. And a great domain name is key to promotion.
Milo’s got that figured out.