The internet has forever changed the process for how companies create their name and brand. As of January 2016, there were 123 million .COM domains registered with VeriSign. Finding an appropriate and available domain is now one of the first steps in the branding process. If acquired correctly, this can have a profound impact on the success of a company.
All too often we see companies falling into 3 key mistakes that limit their brand potential, confuse their customers and force increased investment in marketing just to explain their brand to gain traction. Determining your domain, especially for a new brand, is not an easy process.
No set formula guarantees success. There are some guidelines to use and errors to avoid. Three common mistakes that we see on a daily basis are using inventive domains that destroy the brand message, using word variations with improper spelling, and narrowing the domain selection to only available domains or not wanting to spend more than $10 for your domain.
Using an inventive domain or brand that creates customer confusion
Using inventive domains that create consumer confusion and disconnect from the product offering is a very common mistake. A domain should preinforce and reinforce who you are and what you company offers.
Where this becomes problematic is when a company uses a word or phrase with strong consumer perception and tries to twist it to their brand. Inventive domains can work; however, be prepared to invest in the marketing needed to educate your customer.
Creating a new word or using unique spelling
With 123 million .COM domains being registered, companies often resort to creating new words or using unique spelling combinations for their domain. This can be a great compliment to their brand allowing companies to create a domain that blends categories. For example, creating a domain that is descriptive and suggestive… This is also a very difficult approach because these types of domains can be difficult to spell and defy the laws of grammar. Schoold.co and Phind.it are two mild examples of domains and brands that create conversion opportunities and demand more marketing investment to reinforce and remember in any advertising.
Being afraid to spend money to acquire a domain that establishes category leadership
Company founders, CEO’s, and marketing managers have many important investment decisions to make, especially at the initial stages of a company’s creation. The domain acquisition choice has a profound impact on the success of the company.
Domains impact product positioning, branding, marketing and long-term expansion plans. The process of domain acquisition has evolved. Hand registering a new, unused domain was possible years ago. It’s odd that in today’s landscape, many of the mistakes of naming occur because companies still don’t want to spend more than $10 on registering a new domain.
This severely limits the options available and potentially forces your brand into an inferior position. Domains should be treated as an important investment for both short and long term growth.For example, a typical rule of thumb for domain acquisition is 1% to 5% of the company’s seed capital. Don’t make the mistake of a weak investment in your domain strategy.
Strong domains save money on marketing and customer conversion because they quickly communicate leadership, intent and synergy with your brand.
Global demand for premium domains is making it harder for companies to find the perfect domain.
Avoid these three common mistakes when selecting your domain. Working with a quality domain broker also opens up significantly more possibilities for domain acquisition within your budget.
At Media Options we have access to the largest portfolio of private domains on the planet. More options mean better choices and better branding opportunities.