How .brands can contribute to real business objectives
By Corey Grant
Senior Advisor – Professional Services, Neustar
Note: A version of this blog was first published on The Next Web. Read the original article here.
Especially for those of us in the domain name industry, it can be easy to get caught up in the technical, domain-focused elements of .brand TLDs.
But having worked with numerous organizations across the globe, I strongly believe that the success of a .brand strategy will be limited if the project is managed by corporate webmasters or IP lawyers and exists in isolation from marketers.
Many organizations are working this out however, with more and more examples emerging every week that show how .brands can be a valuable tactic in programs and activities that truly impact operations and bottom-line.
Here are just some of the ways .brands can become another tool in your business arsenal.
You want to: Build trust and security in your brand identity
Particularly for those in industries such as banking, finance and insurance, building a brand that consumers can trust is vital. Knowing that customers feel safe and secure visiting your site and making transactions is life or death for your business.
From the outset, one of the clearest benefits of .brands has been their exclusivity. Only the organization that owns a .brand can use it – so nobody else can register a name from your .brand. In this case, a .brand can work in conjunction with security certificates, branding activities and other programs to contribute to an overall sense of trust and safety in the brand.
You want to: Increase the efficiency of your advertising and get better accountability from your ad spend
As the world of digital expands horizons for marketers, it has also increased the challenges in determining the right course of action from endless opportunities. Clawing back some control over the customer experience helps drive more direct traffic to your sites and avoids the customer taking a journey via search or social media where they have a strong possibility of distraction.
While some companies like Procter & Gamble demand greater accountability for their spend with agencies, the ability to re-think calls-to-action in advertising with short, memorable domains is a simple step that could reduce your advertising spend.
You want to: Attract, retain and show off good talent
It’s not rocket science: having the right people to keep your organization running and innovate and drive it into the future is an essential part of any business. Standing out from the crowd and getting your job opportunities out there to as many applicants as possible are vital for your HR teams.
Positioning your brand as an innovative leader, providing an easy access point for applicants or those researching your company, and aligning your best and brightest staff with your brand are all activities that can be supported by your .brand TLD.
You want to: Publicize your charitable and community activities
Giving back to the community is a big part of many major corporations. While the number one goal is to make a positive contribution to society, of course ensuring that your brand is prominently linked to these efforts is important for showing how your company lives its values.
The creativity offered by .brands in setting up campaign, promotional and event pages with your brand name built-in, allows community efforts to be closely aligned with your brand identity from the outset, giving your team more time to focus on the important work you’re undertaking.
You want to: Demonstrate consistency across your global business
For more detail on this, read our whitepaper: Think global, act local: Geo-targeting & your .brand
In our increasingly global, digital realm, it’s more important than ever to deliver today’s consumers with a local experience that meets their needs and deepens connections between brand and customer. At the same time, we should be aiming for consistent representation of the brand across regional or global sites.
The increased flexibility and ability to create domains specific to a location or region has created a world in which a global brand can now reach customers on a local level, leading to a better customer experience and strengthened brand loyalty.
You want to: Increase clicks on your links in social
We’ve covered the subject of social media before, discussing how the increased trust of a .brand domain can help secure your social links, making them more appealing to savvy social media users.
In addition to this, .brand domains provide the opportunity to customize a vanity URL shortener to use in social media. There are countless reasons why this is a great way to implement a .brand domain, but the main driver is that research shows branded links can increase click-through rates by up to 34% – a significant boost to a vital platform in your digital arsenal.