Grandseeds

The beauty of short domains in sub-branding


August 24, 2019 (Sat). Epik's Rob Monster has become a popular CEO among domain investors lately. On the Namepros domain forum, you can find him even during wee hours answering questions, offering great deals, and also soliciting ideas. He knows the power of crowd sourcing, and one of his latest projects is to find a brand name for a smart search site.

He listed a number of brand candidates for investors to comment, but one investor raised the interesting question of why not create sub-brand based on the Epik brand, such as Epik Events, Epik Escrow, and Epik Search. Epik is so short that sub-brands based on it are still short but have the benefit of capitalizing on the brand equity of "Epik".

Such practice is actually done is China. Look at Jing Dong (京东), the 2nd largest ecommerce company in the world according to the 2019 study by Forbes. The online retailer owns many sub-brands, such as JD Cloud at JDcloud.com providing cloud-computing services and JD Wu Liu (京东物流) at JDWL.com offering logistics support. As you can see, since "JD" is very short, adding a suffix to it still makes the new sub-brand very short.

Another example is Alibaba which is simply referred to as "Ali" in China. Therefore, when the company creates sub-brands, it tends to use the pattern "Ali" + keyword, such as AliExpress.com for its online retail operation, AliSports.com for its sports economy, AliTrip.com for its tour services, and Alipay.com for its mobile payment platform. These sub-brands are still short.

So, a short brand/domain gives you the opportunity to tag a keyword to it and create a sub-brand. Just make sure you have the matching domain ready before you launch a new sub-brand. In the case of Jing Dong, the company still has many sub-brands without their brand-matching domains, such as JDJR.com for Jing Dong Jin Rong (京东金融=finance), JDFC.com for Jing Dong Fang Chan (京东房产=real estate), and Jing Dong Nong Mu (京东农牧=agribusiness).

Join me on LinkedIn for further discussion.