Tuesday, March 10

I Call Dibs On Dot-Stupid

This is officially the week for ranting about brand websites.

This one centers around custom website domain names that are only limited by your thesaurus.

A proposed expansion of domains means that by the end of the year there could be hundreds. Coca-Cola and Pepsi could request .soda or .softdrinks; Procter & Gamble and Unilever could sign up for .laundry or .soap; and McDonald's and Wendy's could get .burger or .fries. The potential for names and online branding would be limited only by the imagination of the creative marketing industry.

But what if you had to pay for every one of the new domains that relates to your brand? The initial cost estimated by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, the nonprofit agency that oversees the distribution and policy of domain names, is $185,000 for registration plus anywhere from $25,000 to $75,000 in annual fees.

Which violates sooo many of my online marketing principles:

  1. Your brand site is increasingly irrelevant. See my previous posts (1, 2). The last thing you need to worry about is creating a .com strategy
  2. Consumers are more lazy online than in the real world. This has been the key to Google's success. Typing www.dietcoke.com in the browser takes too much effort. Just type "diet coke" in the Google bar next to it and then click the search results link
  3. Google could care less what dots your com
  4. Consumers are not only lazy, they have really crappy long term memory. Think they have a hard enough time remembering your product name? Imagine if they have to remember whether your web address is .soda, .softdrinks, .pop, or .coke. You might as well register all of them just to be safe (that will be $740,000 please)
  5. It worked out so well for those .tv guys...
Do yourself a favor and save your cash for the next .mobi mobile URL firesale.

1 comment:

Sean Monahan said...

Sounds like custom suffixes may have jumped the .shark before they've even .launched