Frager Factor

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Guest Post: Rick Schwartz — Why pay attention? (Piror to TRAFFIC 2008)


"My answer to Arlo, is go to NY T.r.a.f.f.i.c with a different perspective, listen and learn. Then walk in a real city to see how and where names are used everywhere. A different world outside of the silos we live in and perceive things around.
Look at all the different cultures, passions, persuasions. Think of domains as one or two word generics that target a specific group of people.
 Then you'll know what Traffic really is and where the most traffic is that the best names aren't."












Rick Schwartz wrote:
This is my GIFT and my CURSE. My GIFT to see things before they materialize and my curse for speaking it out loud. Just look at the numbers. I lose before I begin. Even of the 1000, only a small percent will actually get it and understand as opposed to just the reaction. I may be wrong, but I am CERTAIN of what I see coming and will prepare for that inevitability.



Response from me with disclaimer-- (fast fingered from shaky hands. Excuse typos) but how interesting 4 years later! Cowboys finally coming from gate and heeding what's dispensed here, And what did we know from iPhone then?)

Owen Frager wrote:
This is nothing new. We've discussed and debated this here since the old board. I can dig up an exchange between Taboo and other top people here with almost the same words as Rick is saying now.

At Traffic, there have been panels forever warning of this eventuality as well as preparing you how to defend yourself against it and build alternates to it.

Look at life before PPC. Rick found solutions. Cowboys had a working site. Kevin Leto built men.com without PPC. Jeff Reynolds, Army.com, Scott Day and all the porn sites.

Even in Kesemodel's book he speaks of either Gary or Scott (can't remember) having no capital, but knowing the domain would turn into something in time, so they pounded the pavement making old fashioned sales calls and leased it for whatever they could get so money would be coming in and they could keep buying more until someone figures it out.

Look at drudge, flicker, myspace, craigs list, plentyoffish, whateverlife- simple ideas that are blank canvases that the visitors paint and that creates a product to sell.

Discounting all the cold calling I did in 98-99 that truly was premature- who else here has really TRIED to find a solution? How many have researched a fit and sent a letter to the prospect?

Who has gone to wordpress camp, ses, adtech, ces, nab, cj university or other shows where there are people with the ideas and technology but not the names?

How many have booked appointments adjunct to Traffic- a perfect way to stretch the ROI by calling on media, ad agencies, talent agencies, literary reps (who broker titles for books and scirpts) or the domain managers at GE, IAC, PG, ATT, Time Warner, Viacom, Discovery Channel etc. that you would never have access to without a 15 minute train ride from Traffic.

Has anyone considered that William Morris (also in NY) right now has about 5000 clients or projects looking for a name? That they may have discovered mary Stephens but know her album can't evolve into her own show with a name that's taken as a domain... and moreover, every stage name they can think to invent.. is taken too. You walk in with Moresa or even Owen Frager and boom, they have a solution dropped in their lap.
                
Candy might even have more luck pitched to Candy Crowley's agent because you know with the net, there's no reason for anyone to work for CNN any more. She will get it before Hershey's will. And same for Queen- her manager is in NY too.

She will get it before Hershey's will. And same for Queen- her manager is in NY too.
Have you ever considered that a domain like "unemployed.com" might make a great name for a world tour by the next big comedian who got into comedy by telling jokes on the street for tips after he was laid off. That's the kind of "storytelling" that takes a name and gives it wings to make someone else's pitch more compelling.

These invented personas are also behind the method to Google's madness. You can bet that manolo the shoe blogger and others is just stagecraft maybe by Google themselves.

I've pointed out here that from my domain tools ip spyer, I found a pattern in MS buying or cyberbullying away domains that they either have turned into PPC pages or seem as if they are real undiscovered talents like on myspace. So they sell things, refer things, have friends who tell other friends.... same mo as our dear Julia.

Many top advertising copywriters and fiction novelists have realized that they can quit their jobs and use their skills to create brands online that sell things for THEM.

They may look like 14 year old kids but they are 50 somethings in boiler rooms watching TV shows or in chat rooms with their target audiences and cutting and pasting the buzzwords and scenarios and even coming on and having on teen start talking about this other great teen's site- the one that's really Madison refugee camp.

In my years in advertising through the people I've worked with and what I observed while coming to meet in their own homes- would blow your mind . Someday enough time will have passed when I can show a video of the real J Petermen and HER secrets.

The key is to stop thinking of domains and web pages simply for ppc ads.

The bigger problem I see happening is when domainers switch to made for adsense sites and think they will survive from search or selling ads. Cowboys didn't have a good luck at it.

Google will be gunning for those too unless you built something unique- a forum, video content, directories, email, sub-domain lease, data mining, charity tie in, celebrity front man. Or do some pr or advertising. Invest in building value in the domains you already have rather then chasing more domains.
Domains are still ideal for advertising. Logos that go on millions of store SKUS, balloons, hats, coupons, business cards, TV ads-- that can be remembered.

On my blog I showcased a clever trick the pharmacy reps are using to get doctor's attention (very hard to do). They provide light switch covers with their Viagra brand, and of course when the doctor is last to leave at night and flips the switch to the flaccid position, he is reminded he has a lot of incremental revenue could be making by asking one simple question to male patients.

On the other hand the male patients who have been embarrassed to ask the doctor for Viagra, see the switch and it's like a wink and a nod that says just ask- you can get that here.

Every office, stadium rest room, walmart restroom has this light switch media that can be sold. Imagine comcast with a switch to dsl or some other them on switch or even for on or off.com which could them be anything.

Use your imagination- then Google will be coming to you.

This has been a large part of my corporate and agency career and I understand the value proposition.
Think about iPhone- Apple tried to get that name from Cisco and couldn't so they took a gamble on launching it anyway and letting see Cisco who the looser would be. Those spots and early buzz were as much a campaign to sell Cisco and secure the name as they were to sell the phone.

They agreed on a license fee of 5% GSP- which was $30 a unit before they cut the price and $15 now. Consider they are forecast to sell 10 million this year and that's without the emerging HSBC coporate order for 200K at a clip.

Is that paying $150 million for a name or paying nothing in Apple's eyes?

The answer is that Rick paid for the name and so did every other iPhone buyer with $30 tax on the price.

It's all in how you position it.

Start showing your names as revenue generators, so they aren't seen as costs.

Can you imagine when the army closes a deal for an iPhone for every soldier, corporations close as standard issue to every employee? I know from informed sources, this is about to explode.

So with $100 million contest for widgets and mobile apps, and $30 mill in revenue generated in one month, I think the people to be calling on are the app developers and the VCs who back them. Because the iPghone won't be forever with a bookmark to you. Your own address will be.

My answer to Arlo, is go to Traffic with a different perspective, listen and learn. Then walk in a city to see how and where names are used everywhere. A different world outside of the silos we live in and perceive things around.
Look at all the different cultures, passions, persuasions. Think of domains as one or two word generics that target a specific group of people.
 Then you'll know what Traffic really is and where the most traffic is that the best names aren't.

Owen Frager ( Owen ) - fragerfactor.com
 Posted in 'Rick's Blog': Fri Aug 15, 2008 3:05 pm - #124004 



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