Frager Factor

Monday, January 28, 2013

DRUM ROLL PLEASE Messr. Berkens: The Biggest Brand Truncation of the Decade Was...

From to and from that to for employee communications for a total of almost $9 million. Again proving that the big money and big deals in domaining are motivated by Truncation something totally elusive to Estibot and standard appraisal metrics.

Even domain experts like Mike Berkens are baffled about the American Marketing Associations hottest trend- one that had end users pursuing one-of-a=-kind domains with unique meaning to them at ANY cost.

Wrote Berkens on his blog TheDomains in October 2009, "Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg, was interviewed by Tech Crunch and was asked the question if he had it all to do over again what  “What would you do now different?”

To which Mr. Zuckerberg answered:

“”"A: I’d get the right domain name.”

“”The moral is that we could get the domain.  We ended up “tens of thousands” for the domain. I think we used which was also a mistake.”

I’m Not sure what he meant by by any of this.

Is Zuckerberg saying he paid too much for the domain by paying tens of thousands for it?

And what exactly did do or not do, that he considers their involvement a mistake?
Any insight or info from anyone in the domain community about this?

A commenter pointed out " cost Zuckerberg and his backers $200,000 in 2005. ”

Then jusr one year ago domain trucation was take to yet another level at an even steeper cost. Then Facebook paid the American Farm Bureau $8.5 million for the domain name, now used internally by employees of the social network. The transaction might have included other related web addresses yet to be revealed.

Accoprding (a site that somehow borrows the Facebook trademark as part of its URL without being part of or sued by Facebook), "The Farm Bureau continues to use for its Internet address, and may own as many as four dozen domain names related to farming, according to Reuters. The article didn’t spell out any of these additional addresses, nor for that matter, what URL(s) Facebook might have received in addition to"

"As for the price, $8.5 million may seems steep when regarded only as something for internal use by employees; call it a legal expenditure and the amount makes a lot more sense, part of Facebook’s overarching strategy of pre-empting domain name squatting and trademark infringement. Assuming the Farm Bureau passed on most of the proceeds of the sale to agricultural concerns that need the money, that makes the whole transaction a win-win."

Of course this is all peanuts to a company valued north of $50  billion. But from a branding standpoint as a user of Facebook considre how clunky and less sexy it would be to tell your friends to check out your photo on "the Facebook." Can't say the name would stop it from becoming what it has... but as a branding guy I can say it mattered.

So the next time someone asks why should I invest in this better, more expensive name your answer is  "Mark Zuckeerberg said if he had it to do over as a startup he have save $9 million by getting the right domain names at the outset." Point them to THIS page.

Ironically Mr. Berkens is the king of second best names specializing in names with a keyword proceeded by the word "the". Since most firms are looking to drop the "the", how you find truncation prospects for your names is as simple as putting a "the" before them and contacting the guy that owns that.

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About The Author: Owen Frager is an Internet marketing expert ready to help take your company to the next level.

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