The best and most knowledgeable experts of dot Brand met in the Brands and Domains conference, on October 2 and 3 in the Hague, Netherlands. Brand and project owners were also present, coming from all around the world — from Australia or Japan to the USA and Canada.
The keynote by Georges-Edouard Dias, CEO of Quantstreams and founder of the concept of brand hospitality, explained how customers are not anymore the targets of brands. Customers have taken the power, influence their peers — and brands must now become hospitable and welcome their customers. The name “home” is the most registered second level domain, showing how dot brand domains are seen as the new home for the relationship between the brand and the customer.
Akram Atallah, president of the domains division at ICANN conversed with Jeff Neuman, Senior Vice President at Valideus and Martin Sutton, director at the BRG, noted that an increasing number of brands were using their domain names, but also said that the true success of dot brand would come from innovative and creative uses of domain names.
One of the new and original use cases was presented by Katie Espinoza and Davide de Guz from Rebrandly, where brands can create meaningful and efficient shortcuts that can then be used in social media, mails and others marketing means. HSBC presented how they are using grp.hsbc to power their short links in social media, replacing the traditional bit.ly URL shortener.
Another original and concrete use case was illustrated by Katrin Olmert from dotZon, who showed how Audi uses their dot Brand domain to empower their distribution network and offer a fully branded, secure and streamlined customer experience to all of their prospects across Germany. Associating distribution partners increases trust and avoids risks. Yuliya Morenets, from the NGO Together against Cybercrime, carried out a survey and interviewed a certain number of retailers who expressed how getting a dot brand domain would increase their visibility and improve their online presence.
On the Search Engine side, Guillaume Pahud, representing the dot brand observatory, and Benjamin Louis as dot Alsace illustrated with three independent studies and protocols, that Google does not favour, nor penalizes the dot brand:
- An SEO competition was carried out on dot Alsace domains with local web agencies.
- Google searches were carried out on the 5000 dot brand second level domains, and looked at how the dot brand domains were ranked.
- An analysis of the migration of BNPParibas, Bradesco and Saxo Bank showed that organic traffic is actually higher with the new platform and new dot brand domain name.
Presentations and pictures are available on brandsand.domains.
By Sara Vivanco, Marketing Manager