Labeled as discuss in General Domain Discussion started by Bob Hawkes, May 15, 2019.
Thiink .com - I liike that naame!!
If the name worths 50k in the eyes of the buyer then good for him, but that does not mean 50k was a fair price for it (eg there is an extra 0).
The heralded " radio test " measure of a domain's perceived appeal and value has been around for a couple of decades or so.
And IMO the " radio test " was certainly a good if not great measure of a domain names' value.
Nowadays, with such a myriad of unique / alternative spellings of names, search engines retuning these unique names ( be it for sponsored, paid or other reasons ) and, many domains literally spelled out in TV ads, I believe the famed " radio test " is but ONE measure of a name's appeal / value, not THE measure.
While I applied the RT to a number of my earlier attempts to reg names years ago - I declined to reg those names that failed the RT.
Today I believe were I clever enough to come up with creative / unique spellings of popular words I'de reg 'em right away regardless of their RT results.
What about email? [email protected] < [email protected]
It seems to me that it's not an issue with existing clients using Reply, and it is hard to find many sites that encourage using an email address over a form, which removes issue.
But we are not debating whether think or thiink is better - I believe most of us would agree think more valuable! It does not have lander or even resolve so no idea what asking price is or owner of think. At least 22 companies use name thiink (probably 2 of which really wanted the .com hence $50k).
My point was simply that seems that end users are not that rarely ignoring radio test, perhaps indicating the more visual trends in branding. Rules like RT are helpful but I think far from absolute and probably less applicable today than a decade ago. Any branding professionals reading thread and willing to weigh in?
All good points.
The SMS Lingo has twisted to domaining world too... but it's a fad and a passing wave, soon to fade away, and in the long run, sensible linguistics will prevail.
I wish I was allowed to reveal because it's such an unbelievable price, but a friend in the business told me about a sale last year, where they were just a conduit, the person was asking an astronomical amount, more than Thiink.com for a name that was a handreg, but they found the one buyer to give them their nearly $100,000 price. It was insane. So yes there are always outliers. You can't run a business on outlier strategy.
I think @Bob Hawkes when premium names were cheaper 15 years ago there was less of this. Price has become one of the biggest factors in these trends, no matter how much domainer's think they know best, like you pointed out. The corporate world does not care, even companies in the space, I remember once talking to someone at Verisign 12 years ago and saying .tv domainers are not going to like this, the quote back was, "No offense Raymond but we don't care what domain investors think."
If Fiver.com was available to register or acquire for $100 I believe they would have went that route but they couldn't/wouldn't so they went with Fiverr and that helped because here is a popular company using the misspell the extra r, going back before fiverr you can look at Digg, Flickr and Tumblr.
There are many names that fail the radio test and it's accentuated when there is a real company on the traditional spelling, like there is a company at Bloom.com, Blooom.com and Bloooom.com.
Maybe then maybe not, there is no evidence that people will go back to sensible linguistics.
Same this goes to paying too much attention to letters on LLLL domains. Startups don't pay too much attention to these stuffs. Entrepreneurs always go for names that tickles their fancy. They don't sit down analyzing where letters are placed
Also, I honesty believe there's more market potentials with 5Ls domains, far more than 4Ls.
I decided to look at the top 100 sales so far in 2019 according to NameBio. It is for a few subjective but I divided into following category. Acronym I defined as 2 or 3 letters but not obvious word. Even though it could be argued I included names with a common acronym (e.g. CBDclub, SEOservices) as passing radio test. The pass ratio is higher in the top 20 sales.
Numbers Only: 6
Pass RT: 59
Fail RT: 21
I agree entirely with your comment about not building business on outliers @equity78 and with your comment about lack of uniqueness making a deliberate plan to invest in them challenging or impossible @Ategy.com.
It seems to me in recent years branding experts and business owners are edging toward more creative. In looking at domain names we should keep that in mind.
By the way not pushing any personal angle here - if you accept common scientific acronyms like DNA as passing RT (which I believe) I have 0-2 deliberate RT fail in about 275 names. I am thinking now though I have placed too much stress on RT.
But mainly I just like to question commonly held beliefs and make sure the most recent and best data support them.
(I gave up on Bobb cause while cute everyone was getting it wrong )
One thing that we cannot overlook is the fact that most end users are relative newbies when it comes to domain selection. Someone who has been in industry for several years has looked at tens of thousands of expiring domains, made bid, renew or drop decisions thousands of times and seen hundreds of domain sales reports.
Imagine someone coming into a gym for the first time who has never been on any type of formal exercise program. They decide they don't want to pay $60/hour for an experienced personal trainer (most end users don't want to pay a premium price for a domain either) and randomly select a piece of equipment or hop on a cardio machine. How likely is it they are going to make good decisions as to exercise selection, training volume and intensity, and technique?
I thi-ink nowadays most of the ads are on the internet or in print-publications or on TV.
Are you guys still listening to the radio ?
While your points are well made @garptrader, however, (with some exceptions) many of us in domains do not have expertise that some business owners bring to the table. Yes for sure we know domains better, and some of us know web, SEO, etc. A few of us have design or branding expertise in formal sense. We have part of puzzle solution but are not experts alone in it all.
If I take your gym analogy, I think branding and marketing experts are the "trainers" that most organizations turn to. Those experts have been involved in campaigns that worked and some that did not, they probably have more expertise than us in graphic arts, they have analyzed research data, they have used focus groups, they know the costs of different types of advertising, they have perhaps worked with influencers, they know differences for different age groups, etc. They know trends and most have both formal education and experience in what they do. They may not know domains well, but they know many things we do not.
They work with the owner in a way that, unfortunately, domainers most of the time do not have the opportunity to do. That owner has experience from their own past marketing, their look at competitors, interacting with their customers. Rightly or wrongly the owners often know what they want - is it a domain that will make them seem big and trusted or innovative or something else? Do they primarily want it for a website, vehicle promotion or something else.
Business owners also have a very specific business sense of what investments are worth it. To pay $100,000 for something (whether advertising or a domain name) it must every year long term yield benefits worth about $5000 per year.
The most effective domain investors and brokers work effectively with the branding and advertising experts. The more it happens the more it is good for everyone.
I don't think some domainers realize that when they go to a public blog and leave a sarcastic or negative comment about a recent name sale, the business owners or marketing experts who recommended it, that they are closing doors for the communities to work together. They close the doors, unfortunately, not just for themselves, but for domainers in general.
speaking of "misspells" aka "mispelz", I noticed recently that practically every plural "s" of a single keyword domain has a buyer/owner of the plural version using a "z" For example, keywordz, domainz, brandz, giftz, productz, newz, sellerz, scentz, triggerz, even millenialz "who for the most part don't take spelling words correctly, as seriously as older generations". Note, even generation(s) misspelled with a "z" is valued at GD for $6,500.
Regardless, I just noticed this when I tried to hand register a single keyword ending with a "z" and it was gone. Not so ironically Namebio shows 6,500 domains sold with words ending in "z", and I don't think a single one would pass the radio test nor did I notice anyone of them being a brand I recognized.
Interesting too, the only brand in the top 100 brands in the world ending in a "z" is Allianz while there are two brands that end in an "x", Xerox and Fedex....Go X!!!...you pass the radio test
I think that is taking it too literally. It is more the word of mouth test.
If you heard the website without seeing it in print or on a screen, would you know how to spell it?
The main benefit of these type of names are that they are normally available or cheap.
I am sure the vast majority of these end users would take the correct spelling all things being equal.
Anything can be branded with enough money and resources.
Brad makes good points but I wonder if these days we more often than not see something visually on a bus ad, vehicle, print ad, store window, online article, social media mention, etc. As long as that graphic makes the unique spelling obvious, I think it is still memorable.
Even word of mouth people text more than talk and share images like mad. This is a very visual world, despite the surprising interest in audio podcasts.
As I said in first post, I am not disputing RT has some relevance, just wondering if we are over emphasizing it in the domain community. My look this morning at top 100 sales of 2019 makes me feel that way even more.
BTW thiink in .com has been continuously registered since 2004 so someone said no many times, probably, before this big payday.
Our minds tend to fill in the blanks for us. I doubt most people glancing at thiink would even realize it's spelled wrong.
If I owned a name like thiink in everything visual I would make it obvious like the two i being in different colour with tiny people or something. Similar to what Simplii Financial did with their rebrand in Canada. Autocorrect is issue too, though.
Bob...i just hand reg'd 2 two word domains using the first word "Absurd" like Absurd Brands and Absurd Creations. When I checked the definition and synonyms for the word "absurd" it was just what I wanted, however the pronunciation was ab-zurd so I thought about using that spelling? I didn't use it, but due to the definition of absurd, and what I intended to use it for, it would have fit.
Isn't all this fun? This is without a doubt the most fun business in the world
- radio test
- visually pleasing
- visually clean
- pronunciation clarity
- positive meaning
Ideally, you want all those to be perfect, but most names that can get great score in 4-6 of those, are great options for most companies, as 95% of business around the world rely on worse options and there is a limited supply of the ones that check the box for few at the same time.
So, yes, a name that fails at radio test, can be a great fit for a company that, probably doesn't rely much on radio ads or word of mouth anyway. If TV+Internet ads are 70%+ of your ad spend, then you should be fine. Radio ads can support your campaign, once the brand is established and you are just re-enforcing the message. You can also just spell out the name on radio, like "plenti" loyalty card was doing.
If you never had heard of Exxon, would you be able to pronounce it right the first time? Probably not. If you hear an Exxon ad on radio, do they have to spell it out or worry that people will misspell it? Probably not.
From many developers perspective, it's the CTR that matters. It's probably one of googles biggest ranking factors, impressions:clicks. To guess, domain holds avg 90% weight when users decide to click or not. Short domains are important for that! Thiink.com probably, eh 7/10 on click-ability xD
There are many ways and people use cute, clever, memorable (even while unrelated) domains that work too (brandables). It's a lot harder to build a brand than use the instant authority of a exacting domain though. Thiink.com buyer probably knows short domains are better. Think.com was probably out of reach, and he won't settle for a 2 word like most everyone else. In his mind, whatever he's doing, his domain is probably 2nd best possible to think.com.
With each venture there are unique considerations and objectives. There are too many types of business operations to say if they are picking the right domain or not. Some business opt to operate online only, and radio test barely matter then.
I don't like thiink.com domain much though; in my mind I can't imagine any niche that is relatively easy to develop while being well suited with the domain. I imagine that even think.com would be huge business (long/expensive startup) and difficult to find effective monetization in the end.
Also, thiink can be positioned as having an extra meaning: think together (each i representing a person or a company), team effort, synergy.
What an outstanding list of desired domain features @Recons.Com! The only thing I would possibly add, and it might be part of others, is a name which feels fresh and unique. I also like your idea that it is a matter of most, not absolutely everything. Thank you for a superb post!
Names that encourage CTR no doubt important @JayT , thanks for that.
It will be interesting to see who the thiink buyer is. Seems real estate, commercial property, business consultants, financial planning, organizational strategic planning, etc. all on thiink. We will soon know.
[QUOTE="Bob Hawkes, post: 723888 (I gave up on Bobb cause while cute everyone was getting it wrong )[/QUOTE]
Gave me a belly laugh
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