One of the main reasons I enjoy attending domain conferences is that I can meet with companies in the industry. For instance, at THE Domain Conference this past week, I had several conversations with the Sedo contingent of Solomon Amoako and Dave Evanson as well as the GoDaddy contingent of Joe Styler, Cory Lodder, and Marcus Jackson. I had conversations with reps from many other companies as well.
At conferences and other smaller events, I am able to ask questions about the company, exchange ideas about products or services, and sometimes I can get tech support from the company representatives in attendance. This one on one time is mutually beneficial and helps build a strong relationship between various companies and my business. Even if I am not currently a customer, this time can be spent learning about why I should work with a company, or at the very least, be the foundation for a future discussion.
I understand the large industry conferences may be cost prohibitive to some people in the industry. In addition to paying for the conference ticket, people have to pay airfare, hotel costs, airport parking costs, pet and child care costs, and many other expenses. There is also time away from work – whether it is a corporate job or day to day responsibilities at a small business. These additional costs are often more than the conference tickets. It can be cost prohibitive to attend a domain conference.
I think it would be great to see industry companies host smaller localized meetups for clients and prospective clients. These meetups can be informal, and they can be held at a local restaurant, an office, or even in someone’s home. They don’t need to be elaborate or expensive – just a time for people to get to know the company, ask questions, and maybe try out the services. Customers should be invited and the company should also publicize the event so prospective clients know about it.
Smaller events are a great way to build relationships and would often cost far less than conference attendance. There are fewer but more targeted attendees who can learn about the company and see if there is synergy. At the very least, industry companies can learn about why people are reluctant to do business with them and take these learnings back to improve their products or services.
I know that several companies sponsor local events. Uniregistry and .XYZ recently sponsored the Southern California Domainers group meet up, Sedo sponsored an event I planned in Boston this Summer, and Rook / Domain Sponsor sponsored a meetup in Chicago in July. These are well received events, and I think it would be great to see more of them around the country (and world) – even if they are not as large as some of these events.
I think smaller events could be productive for industry companies, and I bet they would be well received.
As always, I invite your thoughts on this.
I signed up for GoDaddy’s Discount Domain Club yesterday. GoDaddy was helpful in reminding me the $119/12mos. fee pays for
itself thru 40% off renewals. The $800 renewals I’m looking at between now and Thanksgiving, are now reduced to approx. $480.
Then, no renewals till April 2016!!
One look at the extensions on the discount price list convinced me.
“These are well received events, and I think it would be great to see more of them around the country (and world) ”
Around the world you have still to speak, first of all, about domains in the language of the particular country involved. In Germany, first of all, you have still to speak about German domains, French domains in France, etc. Neither Sedo nor Godaddy permit to prospect buyers to search domains in languages other than English, on their platforms. It’s something so stupid that it has to be a political choice coming from very high spheres, otherwise I can not really understand how they can be so stupid to not let Spanish buyers searching for Spanish domains, the same for Italian buyers for Italian domains, Polish buyers for Polish domains, etc.
So you think Godaddy, Sedo etc. will host those little meetings (which have been a very successful “format” in many many business sectors for the last 20 years)? The chances to see those meetings in non-English countries can arrive only from outsider companies, those large platforms have other targets, not just money. If it was just about making more money, Godaddy would add the very simple feature to permit buyers to search domains by language, on their auction platform.
Elliot, tx for this much appreciated post.
I was one of those who planned to go to recent conference in Florida, but family events precluded it in last minute. Today’s work/home balance and $$ minding necessities such as those ‘extra’ costs, which are often many x cost of conference ticket are compelling.
Also, given the domains – as an asset class – are the quintessential proxy for the online economy, it is even more compelling that registrars adopt the new biz models for success: meetups, webinars, video conferences
While F2F contact is certainly ideal, especially where large numbers congregate in one place, at one time – need to be cognizant of the costs associated, and the emerging / existing video conferencing improvements allowing for better / certainly cheaper alternatives to larger conferences previously being the mainstay of most industries.
Time for domain biz to adapt to new paradigms.
GoDaddy is planning on this already. I have been working on getting everything in order for us to have some meet ups throughout the year at various office locations such as the Seattle, Cambridge, and Silicon Valley areas. But keep your eye out for our first one which will be at our Flagship office in Tempe, AZ. It will be a great time to see the new office and hang out with like minded people.
I love attending industry conferences as well as workshops and I think it is an ideal thing for companies to be involved in their sponsorship because it would boost their public relation efforts.
I plan to start a MeetUp here in the Houston/TheWoodlands, TX area for anyone interested. If anyone lives local to that area that reads this blog, let me know and we can collaborate to do this.
Our Domain will be DomainNameMeetUp.com/Houston