New gTLD Registries Doing Tradeshow Marketing

Shortly after starting my blog in June of 2007, I wrote about the idea of selling domain names at industry tradeshows, although I never even thought about new top level domain names when writing the article. At the time, I said this:

“Small business owners are accustomed to dealing face-to-face with account representatives from the companies with whom they do business. Much of their business is done with a handshake in person at a tradeshow – especially when opening a new account with a supplier. For the most part, this is impossible to do on the Internet. To many small businesses, learning how to successfully operate with the help of the Internet is a daunting challenge. Why not meet with these business owners in person, make them feel comfortable and win their business? All of this can be accomplished by attending industry specific tradeshows.”

Meeting with business owners at industry specific tradeshows could be a great way for domain sellers to connect with end user buyers. In most cases, this isn’t cost effective since most domain sellers don’t have enough inventory to justify the cost of attending and exhibiting at an industry specific tradeshow. New gTLD registries, on the other hand, have the inventory for targeted marketing efforts like this, and I believe they are beginning to do participate in these events.

Here are a few tweets I found from new gTLD registries that have been participating in tradeshow marketing:

I am sure there are other companies and extensions that are exhibiting at tradeshows with the goal of pre-registering domain names or selling domain names, and I think it’s a good idea. There are some very specific TLDs, such as .Horse, and meeting directly with people in that line of business may be a great way to sell domain names. In addition, even if it doesn’t yield results, perhaps it is also a great way to learn about the target market and change marketing strategy, pricing, targeting, and other aspects of the business plan.

Most companies that operate new gTLD domain registries attend domain industry tradeshows. .Club, for example, is the Platinum sponsor of DomainFest and had a large presence at NamesCon and TRAFFIC shows. Obviously, domain investors will make up a sizeable percentage of domain registrations for most new TLDs, and meeting with them at their conferences is important. I think the end user buyers are the people and companies who will help build TLD awareness for the registries, and getting those companies to use their domain names is important. Attending tradeshows is a great way to make those important connections.

I think it would be fascinating to learn how industry specific tradeshows are impacting new gTLD registries, and I invite them to share some of their experiences.

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. It makes perfect sense for a registry to hit industry specific trade shows but if a domainer tried this they would be yelling Cybersquatter and wanting to hang you from the rafters.

  2. We have promoted TLDs at trade shows in the past. Particularly, .travel at trade and tourism shows worldwide. And at a smaller scale, .jobs and .pro too.

    If the TLD has a very specific vertical, trade shows are a great way to go, especially, if you can target the exhibitors as well as attendees.

  3. We would be happy to share our plans with respect to industry trade shows. Although, .CLUB is a generic term there are many verticals that we cover and find we have gotten great response from industry tradeshows.

    Recently we attended/sponsored:
    -CMAA (Club Managers Association of America) Targeting golf and country clubs
    -INTA (International Trademark Association) Targeting trademark Lawyers
    -ICANN events, Namescon, Traffic –Targeting the industry

    Upcoming in March:
    -Brand Innovators SXSW at Lamberts Restaurant Fri, March 7th –Targeting brands for loyalty programs
    -Loyalty360 in Orlando (March 17-19th) –Targeting brands for loyalty programs
    -Night Club and Bar Show (March 24th – 26th) —Targeting Night Clubs
    -Maccau Chinese Online Auction (Sponsor) (March 21st)—-Targeting the Chinese Domain community
    -ICANN Singapore (March 23-27th) –Targeting the Internet community
    -DomainFest (March 31st-April 2nd) in L.A. –Targeting the domain community

    It’s looking like a pretty busy March for us. In addition, we are also looking at shows that cover Fan clubs, hobby clubs, college clubs, gym clubs, sports clubs, and more. We think connecting directly with the industry will ultimately help drive end user demand. And if endusers are using the .CLUB extension it will drive even more demand to the TLD.

    Colin Campbell
    CEO, .CLUB

    • Good luck, you guys got your work cut out for you, what happens when a club wants a, are you going to ask 5 figures, they will call you a squatter, and be done with you. There are many high end club .com’s sitting parked, as the end users have not been willing to pay owners what they have wanted to date. It is going to be domaining power buying into these.

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