Last night I attended the Southern California Domainers Meetup organized by Morgan Linton and Jason Thompson, and I can attest to two things: first, it was among the best free networking events I’ve ever been to, and second, if you are in town for DOMAINfest and skipped it, you missed out.*
Morgan started out by welcoming the crowd of about 75 at the Shore Hotel — mostly investors, although there were also several developers and affiliate marketers who were new to domaining.
Left of the Dot’s John Lyotier gave the first presentation, detailing their development strategy for properties like Villa.com and Massage.com, which includes subdividing valuable domain real estate into subdomains. He used Inspection.com as an example, which the company recently developed in anticipation of the extended Moniker Premium Domain Auction at DOMAINfest. Within minutes of launching the site framework, a lead came in from someone looking for a home inspector, which proves that industry credibility goes hand-in-hand with owning a premium, industry-defining domain.
John also mentioned the innovative measures the company is taking in terms of analyzing and reaching out to end-user prospects, and explained that they’d had direct contact (both through email marketing and snail mail) with 54 highly targeted decision makers regarding Inspection.com.
Left of the Dot doesn’t only develop as a sales strategy. They also forge longterm relationships with owners of premium domain properties, splitting development costs, revenue, and upside. It is clear they have an amazing team and are taking a unique approach to domain development, and it will be exciting to see what they come up with in the future.
Abdu Tarabichi of Domainsville summarized his site’s successes in terms of social media, and the founders of ContentWriters.us pitched their service, which delivers original, Copyscape-approved content for $.01 a word.
The night wrapped up with two exciting presentations from Protrada and Morgan Linton. Protrada is a sleek new domain management and auction tracking platform that has recently ventured into rapid development. In only 11 seconds, Protrada can populate a widgetized, fully-functional website based on its semantic analysis of your domain’s keywords.
Company guru Troy Rushton says that what sets them apart from other mass-development platforms is the depth of their content, as well as the flexibility of their designs. For instance, you can book travel through their sites (partnered with Expedia), and they have a variety of lead gen forms and search functions that make for a more interactive user experience, over say, a static minisite.
Morgan Linton and his team unveiled a new valuation tool, Appraiso, which draws on archived sales data from a number of platforms to determine a website’s value. You can value the domain by itself, or enter in traffic, revenue, and profit, to generate a sales value (based on multiples and comps of similar sales).
One of the really cool features about Appraiso is its ability to recognize and flag issues such as when revenue for a site appears too high based on the number of unique visitors per month. This can help potential buyers assess whether the seller’s estimates are accurate. There are a number of other cool features they plan on unveiling in the near future, and Morgan explained that the algorithm on which Appraiso is based is structured to “learn” from newly inputed data.
If you are ever in Southern California, I highly going to the Southern California Domainers Meetup – the group has reserved the Shore Hotel as its venue and will be holding regular Meetups every three months. It’s a great way to meet domainers from around the country, and I’m already looking forward to the next one.
* Unless you were at the “other” more exclusive party happening in town.