Famous Four: “Why Domain Investors Should Embrace New gTLD’s Today” I Have Some Thoughts

Famous Four Media (FFM) an application for more than 50 new gTLD’s just published a blog post entitled “Why domain name investors should embrace new gTLDs today”

The post was written by Rob McCrea Head of Account Management at Famous Four Media

I will publish a part of it here and have some comments after:

“Much of what those who “know what they are doing” in the domain name industry are actually doing is very similar.

“We (.CLUB, Donuts, FFM and the other experienced registries) have embraced the channel and aim to support their registrars as much as is possible whilst squeezing in a couple of hours of sleep every couple of days!”

“Given the role the registrar has to play in the growth of the new gTLD program it is fair to say that a lot of money and effort has been spent by registries on the registrar piece of the domain name puzzle. ”

“There is however another very important piece in the puzzle… …the domain name investor.”

We see that that the majority of names currently being registered in new TLDs come from domain name investors, and at Famous Four Media this was no surprise, we knew this was coming. Investors in our TLDs are important for early revenues of course, but they have a much more important role to play than this. Investors will buy our domains at low cost and sell them to the right buyer for the right price. The right buyer is most likely going to be someone who is going to actually use the domain, and therein lays the key to the sustained and long term growth of any new TLD. ‘Get it used and get it seen.’

Calling all investors – why invest in Famous Four’s domains?

There a many reasons to invest in Famous Four Media’s strings:

  • Premium Names:I believe Famous Four Media has been very frugal with its premium names with only around 3,500 in our first three strings compared to the 6000+ (as I understand it) of .CLUB. This means that there are a lot of great names available to domain investors at normal registration prices. Grab them and flip them.

 

  • Super Premium Names: we contacted some of the World’s foremost domain name brokers way back in September 2013, and asked them to choose 10 names each from all of our uncontested TLDs they felt could be placed for the right price. This will generate interest in the registries and will help create demand for names.

 

  • Re-investment in our TLDs: in each of our applications, we will re-invest at least 2USD per name sold, back into a marketing development fund, so by buying a Famous Four Media domain name you immediately see 2USD re-invested in increasing the value of your names.
  • Great Names:  .BID, .TRADE& . WEBCAM are our first gTLDs into GA on June 9th these are commercially very strong.

o    .BID: you visit a .BID website if you want to buy or sell anything. A .BID is a must for anyone selling at auction or open to offers.

o    .TRADE: resonates with small medium enterprise, financial institutions, wholesalers who sell to trade, and emerging markets looking to open their doors to a Global audience

o    .WEBCAM: think search results, and picture any interesting term ending in.WEBCAM, who isn’t going to click on this? BigBen.webcam, WorldCup.webcam, NakedIroning.webcam

  • Landrush, what landrush?  We are going straight to GA on June 9th, no landrush, no early access, no qualifying criteria, just great names at normal registration prices.

In conclusion

I want you to come in on June 9th and clean us out, take our best names at the best possible price, and sell them on to someone who will use them, and use them well, all the while increasing the value of those other names you bought in that same TLD.

Domain Name Investors: you are more important to the long term success of the new gTLD program than you may ever have considered. The new gTLD program is depending on you, the registries are depending on you, and ICANN is depending on you and, at Famous Four Media, we’ll continue to invest in our collective success.””

***********************************************************************************************************************

So its interesting that a registry is actually courting the domain investors.

Haven’t seen much of that and certainly not in writing.

Registries generally know a lot of their business is going to come from Domain Investors but really don’t admit it and don’t openly invite domainers in.

As for the strings mentioned obviously .Webcam has the most value and in our opinion and will get the most registrations.

While they are comparing the amount of reserved domains that .bid, .trade and .webcam has to .Club (RightoftheDot.com prepared the .Club reserved list) I would say that none of those extensions are anywhere as deep as .Club in premium domains.  So while FFM only reserved an average of 3,500 domains in their first 3 strings, in my opinion there are not 3,500 .trade or .bid domains worth reserving to start with and certainly not to call them premium domains.

.webcam could get to a few thousand reserved domains, it would suck almost everything out of the extension worth registering.

.Club is a much broader string with a lot more possible registrants and users and therefore 6,000 reserved domains in .Club, again in my opinion, is less onerous than 3,500 reserved domains in these three extensions

I have played with .webcam to find domains to pre-register and its been a tough go.

While FFM looks to no landrush as a benefit to domain investors for me personally I rather have a land rush where I could pay more for early access.  In my personal experience getting a domain on the opening of GA is pretty hard when you can have several hundred registrars all trying to register the same domain.

The odds including places like Pool which use many registrar tags to get domains maybe 1 in 500 to get any particular domain.

Not great odds.

Finally just like I have gotten on registrars for including problematic  domains in their emails to customers.

In the blog post the author mentions three .webcam domain names that are not reserved and can be gotten in land rush (if not taken in Sunrise):

BigBen.webcam

WorldCup.webcam

NakedIroning.webcam

Now as for WorldCup I wouldn’t recommend anyone register that domain it will be hit with a URS faster than you can say Big Ben.

The registry should know that and should not encourage anyone to register such a domain.  NFL.webcam and NBA.webcam are also available but should also be avoided by domain investors who the post was directed.

Naked Ironing I don’t know if that is a UK kind of thing but I never heard of it.

Its another case of a registry or registrar suggesting three domain names and two are fails! in my opinion.

If you have a ton of available good domains then don’t publish 3,  publish a list of 12,000 like .club did.

By the way from that 12,000 list of .club domains,  I published over 400 of the one’s I like and went into 35 land rush auctions that were on the list I published and I have lost most of them.

Comments

  1. says

    Great ‘talk’ on the blog… Understanding who is involved in FF they are sophisticated and have experience in the space.

    I reckon a good litmus test on the robust support of the domain investor space would be “walking the walk” – so watch for them to actually sponsor a conference like NamesCon or TRAFFIC as indicators.

    Hasn’t happened to date, but that said it is perhaps likely not so much a hollow words scenario, but rather all the focus at moment being on launching their TLD strings…

  2. Kate says

    Why should domain investors embrace new TLDs if there is no aftermarket ?

    And there has to be a primary market before a secondary market can take shape.

    No thanks.

  3. says

    Jothan

    I haven’t seen FFM sponsor much in the way of advertising on the blogs, they did have 1 spot on the ticker for 3 months and are doing a “take over” of thedomain.com where you see Uniregistry advertising now for two weeks in June.

    Then Mr. Schilling is back up

  4. DomainInvestor says

    Great insight MHB.

    “I want you to come in on June 9th and clean us out.”

    At $35 (minimum) a pop..c’mon. The registry would be cleaning the domain investor out if an investor were to collect a large portfolio of such names.

    If you really want domain investors to clean you out then you would price the extensions for free in the beginning and let us re-sell…just like NetSol did (by incompetence of course)

    A flip occurs when you can immediately sell something for a profit. What happens when there is no aftermarket to immediate flip to the next fool?

    Keep the Kool-Aid flowing registries!

  5. cmac says

    i’d imagine most domainers who are into the new gtlds and don’t regularly sell six figure domains are pretty broke already at this point.

  6. says

    I agree Mike,there is no skin in to those 3 gTLDs.Club is a much stronger keyword/generic then those 3.
    I will pass
    I already have ( from day one ) 500 G’s and i don’t have traffic nor offers,so i think i will stop here for now anyway.
    So far .co it’s a much better investment then the new G’s.

  7. Rob says

    Dear Mike,
    Thanks for reading my blog post, since the FFM blog is quite new, I was under the impression it was only my Mum and selected relatives who were reading it! I really appreciate the feedback – we are the same as any business and are always happy to hear from other industry stakeholders.

    For the record, I think if we are to truly change the way that people use the naming space, then we need for there to be as many right-of-the-dot (no plug intended) terms as is possible. I spend time I am not talking to registrars in supporting other registries on Twitter, Facebook and other outlets.

    So unequivocally: good luck to all in nTLDs.

    If I may, I’d like to respond to some of the points you raised:

    .WEBCAM
    It’s interesting that you should point to .WEBCAM as having most potential of our initial three strings – I am inclined to agree up to a point, however I am also inclined to disagree with your suggestion that a few thousand names “will suck almost everything out of the registry worth registering.” There is possibly a single vertical market which may only have potential for a few thousand good names in .WEBCAM I believe that .WEBCAM is a multi-vertical string.

    For example, I’m sure each one of your 10,000 followers on Twitter (of which I am one) will know of at least a couple of tourist attractions in their local vicinity. Each one of those has the potential to be a ‘good’ name, if the definition of good in this context is the ability to be flipped rapidly for a good return.

    If this reasoning fails to satisfy your request for 12,000 names how about the realm of geography: in the USA alone there are 254 cities with a population of over 100,000 all prime candidates for a .WEBCAM.

    Traffic management: how many busy intersection choke points are there with advertising hoardings? Just FYI: both motorway.webcam and freeway.webcam will be available during GA at normal registration prices, and to re-iterate with no Landrush. The value of these names at this point is of course entirely subjective, but with over over 10 years business development/sales experience – I am very confident I could personally move these on very quickly, with only a few telephone calls.

    And finally, if all else fails let’s look towards an industry that consumes an estimated 28% of all Internet traffic …Adult Entertainment. Some of the larger adult entertainment sites have more than 27,000 webcam models.
    As you know we are based in Gibraltar, and I cross an international border every day coming to, and leaving work. Religiously, I visit the following website at around 6pm to check what the queue to cross the border is – this often determines whether I go for a beer or just straight home of an evening. http://www.frontierqueue.gi/

    Frontier.webcam and queue.webcam are also both available during GA and at standard registration prices – no landrush.

    My Three Suggested Domain Names
    BigBen.webcam: am I right in saying that we are agreed this is a good string?

    WorldCup.webcam: I am broadly aware of the protections which exist for World Cup but I am certain that there are a myriad tournaments named World Cup out there, hence the suggestion – perhaps a less contentious suggestion may have been appropriate: WorldChampionship.webcam or tournament.webcam. Both available at GA, at standard registration prices, and again no Landrush

    NakedIroning.webcam: I don’t think this is a UK thing, rather it is simply a bit of fun being had by the author – would you prefer NakedSkyDiving.webcam: it is definitely “a thing” and an international thing at that! http://vimeo.com/user18550314

    And Finally
    As the original post suggests: we have left innovation in the hands of the end user, and I think actually we’re both on the same page Mike. The opportunity presented by nTLDs is as big or as small as your imagination will allow.

    Thanks again!

    • DomainInvestor says

      How much do you think you would be able to get for “NakedIroning.webcam” As an investor do you really think it’s wise to pay $35 for NakedIroning.webcam to “flip” . All of your examples that you give are horrible!

      Instead of BigBen.Webcam., why not London.Webcam…oh wait… the registry has it on reserve.

      Instead of WorldCup.Webcam (TM issues) why not soccer.webcam…oh wait… the registry has it on reserve.

      Instead of NakedIroning.webcam, why not Naked.Webcam…oh wait… the registry has it on reserve.

      Please do not try to fool us!

      • Raymond Hackney says

        Exactly you have to make the distinction as a registry to who you are pitching too. The blog post was why domain investors should pay attention. Domain Investors need to be able to acquire and then sell, cute doesn’t matter, you think it sounds cool ? Doesn’t matter. The registries should focus on individuals and businesses because if you keep coming at Domain Investors with nonsense the blowback is going to be strong. Domain Investors are focused on one thing, making sales,WorldCup.Webcam is a terrible example as it is a tm and who is someone selling it to if they don’t mind dealing in such names ? It is one thing to waste a few dollars on a risky name but who is buying it and wasting xxx to x,xxx ?

  8. Rob says

    Appreciate the feedback guys, but I maintain there are really good names available. NakedIroning was a tongue in cheek remark, I don’t expect anyone to register it, although I may do myself now for posterity! I think what I’ve tried to convey is that we think that investors have an important role in getting TLDs out to the end users and small businesses, if you choose not to take part in that process of course that’s your perogative, but I feel certain that some will and can be very successful in doing so. I wish you well with whatever investments you do make, com, co, webcam, bid or trade, or party, or download, or accountant, or win, or men, or faith, or loan, or date, or science, or review!

    Shameless plug – all the best guys.

    • Grim says

      Small business would still rather go for something professional and known, like .COM. All of this other stuff is crap. If I start a new business tomorrow, I already know of a couple 8-letter names I’d choose for it, and they’re ALL available in .COM. This lack of names being the reason for the new TLDs is a nice argument, but hardly true.

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