Getting The Right Contact is Key

When trying to sell a domain name, I believe the most important thing is getting in touch with the right person at a particular company. If you call or email the wrong person at a company, you might not receive a reply when that company might be willing to spend the most money of any prospect for a domain name.

I’ve seen and used a few lead generation tools. It seems that most are able to provide a domain name seller with the Whois contact email address for potential prospects. Some tools are better at finding targeted prospects than others, although I would argue that doing this by hand is better than by using a tool.

That being said, the Whois email address is quite possibly not the best email address to use, and that is where searching for the right contact by hand is important. Many companies have a dedicated Whois email address, and the person or group who monitors this email address is responsible for maintaining and renewing the domain names. They may not be responsible for marketing decisions related to domain name acquisitions. For example, the IT department may not have the authority to buy a $25,000 domain name that will be used by the marketing department. If you solicit an IT person about this, they will likely ignore your email, especially if they are busy (hint: most are busy).

I use a variety of tips and tricks to find the right contact at a company. Most take a bit of time because many of the people I need to contact don’t have their email addresses listed in the obvious place. I do my best to learn about the company and the way it works because ensuring my email is read by the right person is the key. For instance, with some smaller or medium sized companies, the President or CEO might be the best person to contact, but with a larger company, the CEO would be too senior, and an executive assistant may simply delete the email.

In my opinion, when you are sending out emails, it is far better to send out 5 highly targeted emails than 100 untargeted emails.

Elliot Silver
Elliot Silver
About The Author: Elliot Silver is an Internet entrepreneur and publisher of Elliot is also the founder and President of Top Notch Domains, LLC, a company that has closed eight figures in deals. Please read the Terms of Use page for additional information about the publisher, website comment policy, disclosures, and conflicts of interest. Reach out to Elliot: Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn


  1. Great article, spot on!

    I have 2 questions:

    1) Who do you usually decide to contact in a company when it’s very large?

    2) Do you do it by phone or by email? (I prefer email contact, so does it matter who you email online VERSUS who you call up?)

    • Contacting the CMO is terrific advice, thank you.

      Do you usually contact only one employee at the company, or several employees in different positions? I know if I contact more than one person, my chances of a reply increase. But, it also makes it seem a bit unprofessional.

      Also, do you price your wording differently for higher end domains in the high 5-6 figure range, than for other domains that might sell at the 4 figure range?

      Thank you so much!!

  2. When I think of some of the companies I have worked at previously an email with for sale to is going to either go to the spam folder or get deleted by the front desk receptionist.

    I have found a better response rate using Facebook messaging. While the individual managing the company Facebook account may not necessarily be the Director/VP of Marketing, there is a better chance that this person reports directly to them. You at least bypass the front desk. The problem with Facebook is that many profiles using Facebook consider an internet presence as something which should be free so the idea of paying real money for a domain name seems to be frowned upon (despite numerous “How much?” inquiries). The other issue is that Facebook will not permit large numbers of outbound messages over short timeframes even if the messages are targeted.

    • I think messaging through facebook is another great option. I tried to sell my domain through company fan page. I think it was the social manager that tells me that he will inform his boss about the offer. After 2 days they replied and ask how much?.. Yes FB contact is possible to get in. But the question is how? (specially if you have a large portfolio). I think the key here is patient. Since, FB does not allow bulk messaging after few sends, maybe 20 each account, FB will notify you to slow down.

  3. “I use a variety of tips and tricks to find the right contact at a company. Most take a bit of time because many of the people I need to contact don’t have their email addresses listed in the obvious place.”

    So what are the tips and tricks?

    • I’ve discussed many on the blog, but here are a few:

      Find email contacts in press releases
      Guess the email address of a CMO and search LinkedIn, Google+, Facebook, Google…etc for a match
      Guess the email address and send the email
      Search “domain name” and LinkedIn for that particular company to see if any job description fits
      Call the company and ask
      Search the website for “buried” contact info that isn’t obvious
      Search Whois History from when the company was smaller to see if a good contact is listed.

  4. “In my opinion, when you are sending out emails, it is far better to send out 5 highly targeted emails than 100 untargeted emails.”

    Is this your subtle way of saying to everyone “please don’t SPAM”? why not just come out and denounce the practice where many domainers harvest email addresses from whois and flood our inboxes with their worthless crap.

  5. I contact a LOT of end users via email and use all sorts of searches in Google to help find the right person and email format.
    One thing I find works well is doing a search in Google with the ‘domain name + press release’. A lot of medium to big size companies will either have Press Releases on their own website or on PR distribution sites.
    And the Press Releases you find in most cases will have either have the details of a Press Officer (or a marketing person), and their email address. So now you have the company email format.
    And in lots of cases the Press Release may also include a “quote” from someone like the CMO, CEO etc so now you have a name plus the email format for that person.
    (And I wrote a post on the most popular email formats here:


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