What Hollywood Can Teach Us About Choosing Domain Names

By on December 1, 2009

Let’s get it out of the way right off, so that nobody gets confused, Hollywood is terrible at choosing domain names. However, they are generally pretty awesome at selecting short, descriptive, compelling movie titles.

[Image: Josh McConnell, Hollywood Sign, June 6, 2009 via Flickr, Creative Commons Attribution]

I’d like to break down a couple attributes that I feel blockbuster movie titles represent and how they can be applied to choosing the perfect name for your business or development project.

Go grab some popcorn, sit back and enjoy the article!

Short

2012
It’s pretty obvious that shorter domains are more attractive, accessible, and memorable. Hollywood is notorious for condensing titles down to their smallest form for big impact.

My suggestion for selecting a domain is to have no more than 3 words (much preferably 1-2 words) and be no more than 14 characters in total if possible.

Descriptive

ninja assassin
Selecting the right keywords for your domain name is very important.

The words in your domain should give a general impression of what someone is to expect on your website.

In a perfect world we would be able to select the exact keywords of a specific niche (see “Generic” below), but often you will need to opt for alternative keywords that work.

Compelling

couples retreat
A domain that invokes an emotional response is a powerful one.

Similar to how some colors can invoke a calming, cheerful or otherwise emotional state, so too can the words in your domain.

For example, while the domain Facebook.com does the job, the LinkedIn.com domain invokes a feeling of connectedness and exclusivity.

Action

Monsters vs. Aliens
Action words (go, buy, click, bid, tweet, etc.) are very effective in domain names when used properly.

Some of the world’s most popular brands are built on action names and slogans. (Just Do It!, Go.com, Sprint, etc.)

One must be careful to put the action in the hands of the website visitor (provide options, don’t be forceful) or your action keywords may lead to inaction.

Generic

Surrogates
Generic dictionary terms are known to be the “holy grail” of domain names.

Wise investors have since collected all single dictionary word domain names. But, do not despair! Many of these premium names change hands often in the domain aftermarket.

Candy.com recently sold for $3 million, what a bargain! Generic .COM domains will always be in high demand and their value exponentially increases as the total pool of domains are registered.

Brandable

zombieland
The mainstay of social media’s latest startup and the app stores latest gadgets.

Brandable domains like DotSauce.com can be an affordable, effective solution to creating a unique identity for a product or company.

While this can be a viable option you must take care to select a name that is user friendly (memorable, pronounceable) as well as marketable. Does it look good and make sense?

Thanks Hollywood!

The majority of movie titles never make it to the top of box office sales. How will your next domain perform in it’s debut?

I hope these pointers will help you in choosing your next domain name!

If you would like further advice on domain names or where to buy domains be sure to browse past articles on DotSauce. If you’ve got a question, I’m always available. Get in touch with me on Twitter (@DotSauce) anytime or post a comment below.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail
AQDN.com

About Mark Fulton

Mark is the Founder of DotSauce Magazine and a full time web developer, domain investor, SEO and online marketing professional residing in North Carolina, USA. Visit MarkFulton.com for information on freelance website development, SEO and consultation services.