This week marks the first birthday of the general availability of dotSucks domain names. It has been a year notable for both heat and light, adding up to a set of insights relevant for any new gTLD.
A successful gTLD either meets a market need or creates an opportunity
Be clear about who you serve and use their vocabulary (not domain name industry jargon) to tell them about it. Engage in marketing
Have a story to tell
Emotional resonance is more effective than even overwhelming facts-and-figures. The right story helps people see themselves in you.
Let your customers speak for you
People are trained to deflect commercial messages (remember when banner ads ruled the internet?), so let your customers take center stage. Peer-to-peer communication the most effective form of communication.
Partner wherever possible, go it alone when you have to
Domain names are a small and new industry; often without broad awareness and hard to explain. This is mitigated by participating in larger groups (like an association) to make sure the basic story is told om the same way by many voices.
At the same time, each new gTLD likely has its own qualities that may not be relevant to all but can be better heard because of the work of larger groups.
Rome wasn’t built in a day
Most overnight success is years in the making. Most. It is best not to get too high or too low in the face of daily sales. Focus on building long term value. Make that part of the story, too.
Much like the birthday of Vox Populi Registry, when meaningful metrics are met or logical mileposts are reached, let people know about it, especially your customers!
Answer questions as they arise. Be timely in delivering customer service. Participate in both domain name industry gatherings and those of the market you target.
Visibility leads to awareness which leads to sales. Value leads to renewal which leads to long-term success.