Feb
17
2016

The Politics of Domain Names

Categories: Blog, Domain Strategy, Domains

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A domain name is so much more than a web address. Think of it as the foundation of your digital identity. It supports the brand and image you’ve worked so hard to build — and maintain.

And to protect it, you need to think beyond the main URL you want people to use.

How else might they find you? How might they look for you, search for you, type in an address for you? And how might your competitors hack your brand? Or maybe it doesn’t matter. After all, you’re directing people to your main site in all your ads and literature, right?

Not exactly. Just ask Jeb Bush. At some point, his campaign owned jebbush.com. And at some point, it didn’t. The registration lapsed. Jeb’s main campaign site is jeb2016.com, so maybe it didn’t seem necessary for him to own jebbush.com, or maybe it was a simple oversight. Either way, jebbush.com now redirects to donaldjtrump.com.

Now take it a step further to think about the domain extension itself — what’s to the right of the dot, aka the top level domain.

It looks like Bush’s team doesn’t own jeb2016.US, .org, .CO .info or any of the other top extensions. On the other hand, Trump’s campaign didn’t reserve donaldjtrump.biz, .info or .org either.

And it’s not just on the Republican side. While HillaryClinton.biz redirects to her fundraising page, HillaryClinton.US, .info and .org don’t seem to be affiliated with her campaign. Ditto for Bernie Sanders’ sites.

Brand protection extends to the entirety of your web presence — not just your main website URL. Think broadly about all the domain names and related domain extensions you should register to both promote your brand – and to protect it from unscrupulous competitors.

Take ownership of your digital presence – or you too might get “trumped.”

And when you really think about it, shouldn’t all campaigns geared to the American citizensStart with .US?