Safenames Blog
Stay current on important topics that impact your domain portfolio and brands online

It’s difficult to believe that it’s only been a couple of years since new domain extensions (also known as New Generic Top-Level Domains or gTLDs) changed the internet forever. With literally hundreds of new options, from .LIVE to .SOCIAL, .ROCKS to .CONSULTING, brands of all sizes and across all industries are embracing the creativity and branding potential.

Increase Customer Engagement with a Branded Short Link

Though Twitter is a valuable marketing platform, you still have to make the most of its limited digital space, making URL shorteners an essential tool. While some platforms help generate a generic short link for use in social media posts, many companies prefer branded content, even when it comes to link shorteners. Fortunately, new domain extensions are perfect for this purpose. By utilizing a branded short link, businesses can maintain brand consistency across multiple social media platforms with a call to action customers can trust. A Bitly study published in 2016 also states that branded link shorteners increase audience engagement, resulting in a 34% increase in click-through rates.

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For example, The Seattle Times, Washington state’s largest daily newspaper, utilizes st.news to create branded short links that visually connect their brand to all stories they share via Twitter.

Rightside utilizes rs.news as a branded link shortener across multiple social media accounts including Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. After registering a unique branded domain like www.rs.news, brands have the opportunity to create customized text after the backslash to present a more descriptive call to action. For example, a recent blog entry with a full URL of “rightside.news/domains-vs-pay-per-click-new-tlds-work” was compressed to the concise “rs.news/seotlds” once we posted it to Twitter.

About Rightside: Rightside® inspires and delivers new possibilities for businesses and consumers to define and present themselves online. The company, with its affiliates, is a leading provider of domain name services, offering one of the industry’s most comprehensive platforms for the discovery, registration, usage, and monetization of domain names. Rightside’s strong portfolio of 40 TLDs offers a wide selection of business-focused TLDs perfect for Brands.

Guest blog by Rightside

A new promotion from Donuts Inc. will enable brand owners to protect more trademarks at a lower annual cost for up to 10 years. The Domains Protected Marks List Plus (DPML Plus) program, available for subscription between October 1 and December 31, 2016, allows trademark owners to protect their marks and related terms across all of Donuts’ new generic top-level domains (gTLDs) at a fraction of what it would cost to defensively register the same terms. Available since 2013, the popular legacy DPML service is employed by thousands of subscribers, including Fortune 500 brands like Verizon, Target, Costco, Apple, HP, Microsoft and Amazon.

The standard DPML service works by “blocking” a string of characters from registration at the second level (the characters before the dot). The string may be an exact match of the mark or may contain the mark within it (the mark may be at the beginning, end or anywhere in the applied-for label, so long as it is contiguous).

The limited-time DPML Plus promotion enhances the current DPML program by allowing brand owners to widen protections, including, for the first time, common misspellings of their marks. Brand owners also are able to:

  • Block their marks and mark-related terms from registration for an initial 10-year term.
  • Block one exact match term and three additional strings (legacy DPML covers one string) that contain a mark or common misspellings of the mark (further “contains” or misspellings of terms beyond these three strings are available to block for an additional fee).
  • Also for the first time, block a mark in premium second-level domains across all Donuts’ gTLDs.

DPML Plus blocks are not subject to overrides by other parties with the same trademark. DPML Plus subscribers may submit unlimited overrides of their own blocked terms (for no wholesale override fee) if they elect to register and use a previously blocked term.

The DPML program was developed in consultation with intellectual property experts and has been extremely well received by the trademark community as a mechanism that mitigates infringement risk with one simple step and at significant cost savings.

The company further disclosed that effective January 1, 2017, the price of its standard DPML service will be increased in order to better align the service’s benefits with its marketplace value. Existing DPML subscribers can renew their subscriptions at current pricing before January 1.

DPML applications may be submitted here. More information is available via the company’s DPML Plus Overview and FAQs.

mason-cole

Guest blog by Mason Cole
VP Communications & Industry Relations – Donuts Inc.

It’s a common misconception that businesses must spend thousands or millions of dollars on their domain names. This is especially true now that new domain extensions offer greater availability and introduce unique branding opportunities without negatively impacting SEO. It’s no surprise then that businesses of all sizes are adopting .xyz, the most popular new domain extension in the world, to connect with their audiences in new ways.

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There are many reasons why .xyz has become globally adopted in 230 countries: .xyz is flexible enough to be used in any industry for any purpose, it’s affordable enough to be registered by individuals and new businesses on a tight budget, and it’s instinctive enough to resonate with a new generation of internet users all over the world. The combination of .xyz’s undeniable value and ubiquitous marketing campaigns (and zero-tolerance abuse policy) have made .xyz bigger than well-established domain endings like .info, .co, .us, and .biz in just over 2 years of availability. So how are businesses leveraging their .xyz domains? Read on to find out.

Upgrade your URL to a short, unforgettable .xyz.

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Previously known as PaySavvy.com, the company rebranded to Rise.xyz as part of their shift from HR software to “the world’s first People & Culture Platform.” They offer apps and services to businesses to streamline the entire employee experience, from payroll to accounting to goal setting.

Practice.xyz (formerly Apprennet.com) rebranded to a name that is both memorable and an embodiment of the company’s mission. After securing $4 million in Series A funding, Practice.xyz was launched as a website redesign for their patented, interactive video platform to scale training and skill development.

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With offices in four countries, Feed Communications consolidated their online portfolio from FeedCommunications.com and Feed-London.com, among others, to the international domain Feed.xyz. With “XYZ” integrated into their forward-thinking approach, Feed provides digital marketing solutions using new technologies to clients like eBay, PayPal, and Hearst.

DoverStreet.xyz, which creates documentaries from around the world, upgraded their domain from the much longer DoverStreetEntertainment.com. The production company pairs Academy and Emmy Award winning directors, producers, and cinematographers to deliver stories with integrity that would otherwise go untold.

Launch new products and initiatives using .xyz

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Fathom.xyz is a cutting-edge beacon monitoring system launched by Rx Networks. A finalist for the 2016 Technology Impact Award, Fathom is redefining the IoT with low-energy Bluetooth beacons to create complex location maps for the healthcare, infrastructure, logistics, and retail industries.

Best known for their magazine, How It Works, Imagine Publishing recently introduced their newest periodical, Gadget, on GadgetDaily.xyz. Billed as “the next-gen tech magazine,” Gadget tears down popular gadgets, follows the latest technological advancements, and compares products to make consumer recommendations.

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Launched by the co-founders of Skype, Starship.xyz is a sidewalk-based robotic delivery service that is both cheaper and safer than drones. Starship has received extensive press coverage by WIRED, CNN, Fortune, and others for its testing with the Swiss government and partnership with Mercedes-Benz.

Hooli.xyz was launched by HBO as a viral marketing campaign for its TV show Silicon Valley. As the official website for “HooliXYZ” – a new division of the show’s fictional tech giant – HBO promoted Hooli.xyz by advertising spoofed job openings and other marketing campaigns online.

Engage with your global audience on an international .xyz domain.

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Exponentials.xyz is an online community created by Deloitte for leaders to learn and track exponential techonologies. The website tracks emerging high-impact advancements, such as artificial intelligence, robotics, cyber security, and cognitive computing.

Chengdu West, a leading registrar in China, launched West.xyz as it’s official international website as part of its expansion strategy. Operated in conjunction with its original website, West.cn, West.xyz accepts US currency and serves as the registrar’s marketplace for English-speaking customers

As the go-to domain extension for the next generation of internet users, there’s no limit to the number of ways businesses and individuals can use their .xyz domains. To see more ways XYZ is inspiring and connecting the global community it has cultivated, coined “Generation XYZ,” visit www.gen.xyz/live, or read the weekly #WebsiteWednesday case studies at www.gen.xyz/ww. Contact XYZ for tailored domain suggestions for your business or speak to your Safenames advisors to register your .xyz domains now.

Guest Blog by Shayan Rostam
Global Director of Registry Operations, XYZ.

Recently, the Certificate Authority/Browser Forum sent a notification to Certificate Authorities as a reminder, asking that they discontinue supporting SHA-1 SSL certificates for both SSL and code signing. If you currently have a SHA-1 certificate(s), either in production or in a testing environment, it is important that you replace it before December 31, 2015 with SHA-256/TLS certificates as soon as possible, as there are associated risks to site performance and your site could become compromised.

If you have any questions about SSL certificates, contact Safenames in the UK at +44 1908 200022 (emeasales@safenames.net) or in the US at +1 703 574 5313 (nasales@safenames.net).

 

New GEO gTLD .MIAMI is now in TM Sunrise — this exclusive registration phase will remain open through September 18, 2015 and General Availability (GA) will open October 2, 2015. The registry will not open a formal Landrush period. Miami is a leader in finance, commerce, culture, media, entertainment, the arts, and international trade. Miami was classified as an Alpha-World City in the World Cities Study Group’s inventory and is home to largest concentration of international banks in the United States, and many large national and international companies. Registering a .MIAMI domain(s) enables companies doing business in this Florida region, or organizations serving the local communities, to secure shorter and more relevant domain names for their web site(s).

For questions about this launch please contact Safenames in the UK at +44 1908 200022 (emeasales@safenames.net) or in the US at +1 703 574 5313 (nasales@safenames.net).

Age.com recently posed the question in an article, “will Google Switch To .Google & .YouTube By The End Of The Year?” and we simply cannot wait to find out. While new gTLDs have already changed the domain name registration landscape, some (perhaps many) remain reluctant to register a .brand for their business—mainly for fear that not representing with a standard .com will somehow have a negative impact. But some large/global brands are shaking things up–Barclays recently launched the branded domain names .barclays and .barclaycard. According to Barclay’s news release, registering .brand domains “allows them to create a simplified online user experience, making it crystal clear to [their] customers that they are engaging with a genuine Barclays site.” There is also talk from some media sources that Google and its YouTube brand may register .brand domains in Q4 (.google and .youtube, respectively) this year with the launch of celebrity anchor sites (e.g. rockgod.youtube). If Google makes this move to the right (of the dot), it will be a game changer.

So why haven’t more companies made the move already? Let’s face it, even for global enterprises “new” can often be scary. Perhaps in light of Barclays recent move, and Google’s impending move, we can begin thinking of new gTLDs as “more” instead of “new”. More available domains, more opportunity, more targeted/relevant traffic, higher search rankings, etc. It has become incredibly difficult to find a short domain (because .com et al are saturated)—so ‘more’ gTLDs offer ‘new’ opportunities to be creative and once again register short, relevant domain names that aren’t already registered.

Registering a .brand domain allows you to lose the ambiguity and let potential customers know exactly who you are and what you do. Registering these domains is also a great way to brand and market your products and services. “Registering a .brand top level domain can make it clear to customers that they are visiting or purchasing from an authentic website (or, conversely, when they’re not). It can also offer a breadth of marketing opportunities for different products, services and campaigns—think run.nike, drive.bentley, and the like.”

For questions please contact Safenames in the UK at +44 1908 200022 (emeasales@safenames.net) or in the US at +1 703 574 5313 (nasales@safenames.net).

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