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Friday
Sep022011

Don’t Forget to Buy the Domain for Your New Album

DomainsSo much of what I write comes from my life experiences; either having worked with bands or from my being a fan and consumer. Life is full of many great lessons. Here is a lesson that hit me over the weekend.

KISS just announced that their upcoming new album is called Monster. I immediately jumped onto Godaddy.com and checked the availability of the domain www.kissmonster.com… available. In my opinion this is a failure. How does a major international recording artist not have a plan to purchase all of the related domains for the upcoming release of a brand new album and world tour? Guess what happened, within minutes someone else purchased the domain, it was not the band. Maybe this person is going to do nothing, maybe they are going to take the traffic and try to generate affiliate sales. As a band you don’t know what the intentions might be.

Buying a domain name these days is very inexpensive. If you ever think you should own a domain, get it. Better you own the domain than someone else. Everyone is always thinking about the domain for their band name, but how many of you are thinking about the domain name for your album? Get the domain for the album name as well as your band name and album name. You don’t have to build a website on these domains, you can easily do a redirect to your website or the album page on your website. It is better you control your brand online than someone else.

Yes, you can get the domain back if you have the name trademarked, but that is going to take time and money. You also might not get it back in time to help with the promotion and launch of your album.

Don’t let others squat on your brand, don’t give others the opportunity to make money off of your brand, don’t give someone the chance to setup a site that could be negative to your brand. All you have to do is think ahead, do just a little bit of planning and spend less than ten dollars to buy the domain.

Posted By: Michael Brandvold (Michael is a 20 year music marketing veteran who has worked with unsigned indie bands and international superstars. Michael owns Michael Brandvold Marketing a site dedicated to providing tips and advice for musicians.)

References (2)

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Reader Comments (14)

Hello Michael, and thanks for your article!

You ask: "How does a major international recording artist not have a plan to purchase all of the related domains for the upcoming release of a brand new album and world tour"?

The answer is that nobody will ever visit that "new album site".

If I am a KISS fan, I will visit their official website to learn more about the new album release and get it from there. In addition, if someone wants to know more about the new album from KISS, they'll google it instead of typing the new album title along with the band name in the address bar. I think you can guess what the first Google result for "KISS new album" is; that's right, their official website.

There is no point in creating a brand new site for an upcoming album release; it's a waste of time and money. Even if the "new album site" redirects to the official website of an artist, it is still a waste of time and money. And if someone else buys and makes use of an artist's new album title, that new site will never reach the first page of Google in time. It usually takes months, a lot of good content, and many backlinks for a new site to appear in the first page of Google. And if the "new album site" ever makes it to the first page of Google, it will never rank higher than an artist's official website that was created many years ago.

Sakis Gouzonis
www.SakisGouzonis.com

September 2 | Unregistered CommenterSakis Gouzonis

Great article. Recently I have been using custom domain names to promote new releases. For example for my new release "Monster!" - I set up this domain:

http://www.InLoveWithAMonster.com

September 2 | Unregistered CommenterPaul Loeb

I would like to second Mr. Gouzonis comment and add that this is a terrible article. A band should secure their name as close to the actual band name as possible. Maybe thats why you have 20 years experience with unsigned bands. If you have big money or a genius in the family, than you should go all out with your website(s). By all means, play to your strengths, but from a marketing perspective this Idea of securing domains for albums is too weak to give Merritt. How many times do you remember the album name and not the artist?

September 2 | Unregistered CommenterJordan Rocha

Yeah. This is pretty wasteful; purchasing internet real-estate that no one will visit.

September 2 | Unregistered CommenterAlex

I appreciate all your comments, but I think you missed the point. I am not saying setup a fully operational website. I agree your official site should be your name, your home. I never said otherwise, and have posted a number of articles to that point.

I am suggesting that for a $7 investment you can own and control your brand, not someone else. This is no different than a brand buying www.brandnameSUCKS.com. You buy it so nobody else can.

September 2 | Unregistered CommenterMichael Brandvold

Thanks for your reply, Michael.

Well, if we had to buy every domain name with our name + sucks or shit or whatever negative word you can think of, we would end up paying 1,000,000 USD.

Also, when we are talking about a brand new site, we are definitely NOT talking about a $7 investment. Only the domain name costs $7 or more per year. You also have to pay a pro designer to design your brand new site. You also have to pay a hosting company a monthly fee. And the list goes on and on.

And the most important of all is that nobody will ever visit your brand new site for your brand new album!

Sakis Gouzonis
www.SakisGouzonis.com

September 3 | Unregistered CommenterSakis Gouzonis

Ouch - this became a small battlefield :)

I think that Michael's point is excellent. It allows you to easily get a strong domain of your music's brand (album / song / tour) so from the SEO point of view, you can make better google ranking. And we know that your fans will Google (and other search engines) to find your music.
After spending those 7-10$ on a domain, simply redirect it to the album's page which can easily be created to be an effective artist or music page such as these.

Yo musicians! do these small things to get more fans coming your way!

M.

September 3 | Registered CommenterMike Daniels

Sakis,

I was never talking about a brand new website, as stated in the article "You don’t have to build a website on these domains, you can easily do a redirect to your website or the album page on your website."

But... you are wrong that nobody would visit a site for a album. If you want visits you can get them. A few years ago I bought the domain acefrehleyanomaly.com when Ace Frehley was preparing to release his last solo album. There was a period where my site had better search ranking than Ace's official site. I made the site heavy on strong SEO text to attract searches. It worked. My site was the number one source for preorders on Amazon.com. Fans were buying the album from me, not Ace. Sure he wins in the end because it is his album being, but he didn't get the traffic to his site I got the traffic.

$7 and a redirect and you have no worries.

September 3 | Unregistered CommenterMichael Brandvold

Great idea - wouldn't have thought of it - thanks, Michael.

Most artists don't yet see themselves as a brand, being hung up on the percieved contradiction with doing business...but the indie artists frequently used as examples of DIY success certainly do, leaving the rest to wonder and whine.

September 3 | Unregistered CommenterDG

No, not for me.

I will never buy a domain that redirects to my official website. There is no point in doing something like that. In this case, the only winner is the company that sold me the domain. If 1,000,000 indie artists buy a domain that just redirects to their official websites, then the domain providers will earn at least 7,000,000 USD! No, I will not be a part of it. I will not fund anyone's brand new jet plane/house/car.

I strongly advise all indie artists NOT to buy domains that just redirect to their official websites. It's a waste of time and money.

Sakis Gouzonis
www.SakisGouzonis.com

September 4 | Unregistered CommenterSakis Gouzonis

IMO, people looking for songs before album titles on google.

September 4 | Unregistered CommenterJackie

michaelbrandvoldmarketing.co.uk

is available!Just £6.19/yr

September 5 | Unregistered Commenterandyv

Creating a unique domain name, for a product you are actively marketing, is usually a good idea. It makes it easier to market the product, because you can direct people to a page that has very focused messaging.

It's easier to remember www.Album-Name.com

then

www.artistname.com/pages/album.html

And it makes it easier for fans to find your album by typing in your album name in Google.

Bands set up domains just for albums all the time.

I don't think it's necessary to buy a hundred different variations of your band name, but getting your-album-title.com could be useful in marketing efforts and give you an SEO boost for your album name.Even if you don't create a site for it right away, securing the domain will give you the option.

Chris @ HostBaby
Web Hosting For Musicians

September 8 | Unregistered CommenterChris Bolton

Thanks Chris.

I would only add that buying variations of your name only becomes a consideration when your band becomes popular. Once you have a large number of people who love you will also have people who hate you. Don't let someone start a hate website using your band name.

September 9 | Unregistered CommenterMichael Brandvold

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