GoDaddy Keynote at NamesCon 2016: Unveiling New Tools for Investors

(l-r) Mike McLaughlin and Paul Nicks show off new toys from GoDaddy at NamesCon 2016 Mike McLaughlin, Senior VP of Domains for GoDaddy, manages the team that helps GoDaddy's customers define themselves online. He took the stage on what happens to be his three-year anniversary at GoDaddy. The GoDaddy aftermarket gathers tons of data, he said, that can be brought back to the investor community: "We only succeed if the investors succeed."

"China's obviously the story of 2015 in this industry." Prices are rising in the industry, and not only because of that: "this is a long-term trend." McLaughlin mentioned that one guy on his sales team managed more than 12,000 leads in 2015. He didn't elaborate on when that guy took a moment to use the restroom. It is abundantly clear in the data, said McLaughlin, that pricing your name on marketplaces in a transparent way is the best strategy for highest profits: "The outcomes are better."

People are buying their own names, said McLaughlin, in order to point to their social-media presences. This speaks to new uses of domain names: investors need to keep an eye on these sometimes-subtle shifts, he said, so they can sell more domains at higher prices.

"We're learning, and everything we learn we want to bring back to this community," said McLaughlin. Some of those lessons, he said, were:

  • Merchandising makes money. That means making yourself visible in the marketplace.
  • Always be closing. Demand is global and you need to "always be on it." Your sales process has to be scalable and repeatable, McLaughlin said: "If you have not made the deal in 48 hours, you kinda lost it."
  • In the long run, we're all dead. "Unless your strategy is to live 'til 150, odds are you aren't going to sell through your portfolio."

Those observations are quite high-level, noted McLaughlin. "We've been listening closely," said McLaughlin, regarding community engagement.

Paul Nicks, General Manager of the GoDaddy Afternic aftermarket, joined McLaughlin on stage to add, "We learn by listening." He said that the gathered feedback from the community leads to measurable changes in how GoDaddy does business. "The biggest thing last year [at NamesCon] was gTLDs... you gotta get these things on your marketplace." Oh, and you gotta make it cheaper. Done and done, noted Nicks. Also, the company extended its two-factor verification to its clients around the world, as well as simplifying its commission structure. GoDaddy also cleaned up how it displayed its available names.

Nicks introduced the GoDaddy mobile app, "A broad, comprehensive investor solution that is mobile-first." It will "free you from the tyranny of your desktop," he added: "The app is available for download as of about five minutes ago." Nicks said that it's a simple app, but it gives investors a bit of freedom: "You go to dinner with your family, under the table you can be bidding." The link is below.

Nicks revealed a website "specifically to communicate with this audience", investor.domains. If you download and use the app between now and January 20, you'll be entered to win a Microsoft Surface 3 tablet. "Do it right now and start playing with it," added McLaughlin.

Folks, please use discretion when bidding on domains while out to dinner with your families.

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