Every day, we work with and monitor organizations all over the world that applied for .brand (“dot brand”) Top-Level Domains —that is, web addresses that end with their own brand name, like .google, .microsoft and .sony. So far only about 550 of the world’s elite brands have secured a .brand, so it’s truly a greenfields space for them to explore.
Especially for those of us in the domain name industry, it can be easy to get caught up in the technical, domain-focused elements of .brand TLDs.
But .brands don’t stand a chance if they exist in isolation, managed by corporate webmasters or IP lawyers. There are more and more examples emerging that show how .brands can be a valuable tactic in programs and activities that truly impact operations and bottom-line.
Here are just some of the ways big brands around the world are using .brands as another tool in their business arsenal.
1. Building trust and security in brand identity
Particularly for those in industries such as banking, finance, and insurance, building a brand that consumers can trust is vital. Knowing that customers feel safe and secure visiting your site and making transactions is life or death for your business.
From the outset, one of the clearest benefits of .brands has been their exclusivity. Only the organization that owns a .brand can use it – so nobody else can register a name from your .brand. In this case, a .brand can work in conjunction with security certificates, branding activities and other programs to contribute to an overall sense of trust and safety in the brand.
2. Increasing the efficiency of advertising and getting better accountability from ad spend
As the world of digital expands horizons for marketers, it has also increased the challenges in determining the right course of action from endless opportunities. Clawing back some control over the customer experience helps drive more direct traffic to your sites and avoids the customer taking a journey via search or social media where your competitors can distract them.
While some companies like Procter & Gamble demand greater accountability for their spend with agencies, the ability to re-think calls-to-action in advertising with short, memorable domains is a simple step that could reduce advertising spend.
We’ve seen some awesome examples of creative and engaging campaign sites on .brand domains like www.buildon.aws from Amazon Web Services, www.traiteur.leclerc from French retailer E.Leclerc and www.pop.swatch from watch retailer Swatch.
3. Attracting, retaining and showing off good talent
It’s not rocket science: having the right people to keep your organization running and innovate and drive it into the future is an essential part of any business. Standing out from the crowd and getting your job opportunities out there to as many applicants as possible is vital for your HR teams.
Positioning your brand as an innovative leader, providing an easy access point for applicants or those researching your company, and aligning your best and brightest staff with your brand are all activities that can be supported by a.brand TLD.
4. Publicizing charitable and community activities
Giving back to the community is a big part of many major corporations. While the number one goal is to make a positive contribution to society, of course ensuring that your brand is predominantly linked to these efforts is important for showing how your company lives its values.
The creativity offered by .brands in setting up campaigns, promotional and event pages with their brand name built-in, allows community efforts to be closely aligned with brand identity from the outset, giving the team more time to focus on the important work you’re undertaking.
5. Demonstrating consistency across global businesses
In our increasingly global, digital realm, it’s more important than ever to deliver today’s consumers with a local experience that meets their needs and deepens connections between brand and customer. At the same time, we should be aiming for consistent representation of the brand across regional or global sites.
The increased flexibility and ability to create domains specific to a location or region has created a world in which a global brand can now reach customers on a local level, leading to a better customer experience and strengthened brand loyalty.
For more detail on this, read our whitepaper: Think global, act local: Geo-targeting & your .brand
We’ll be going deeper into examples of some of these approaches, and providing case studies from .brands around the world in our next Neustar .brands Webinar. Register here to join us and discover more.