Your web address and email address are often the first impression the world has of you – and we all know what they say about first impressions.
Internet-savvy marketers know your internet presence is your virtual ‘front door’, and website domain names have long been used to make a brand statement. For example, domain hacks – that is a domain name that suggests an idea by combining parts of the name, for example delicio.us, or instagr.am – have traditionally been popular ways to use urls to say something about your website.
However, this form of marketing has recently been taken to a whole new level. With .com addresses becoming so ubiquitous, ICANN, the internet’s naming authority, has created new domain names tailored to specific industries and interest groups.
At home on the web
The recently released .courses domain name extension is a great example. If you are a learning institution, professional educator, student or in any way connected with the education industry, then .courses should be your new online home.
Many .courses domain names are available globally for little cost, and are fast becoming the instantly and universally recognizable home of genuine educational content online.
Because they are so new, these namespaces offer much greater availability than older extensions. You can easily check the availability of your first choice of domain name for free, and take advantage of category and generic names that allow you to ‘own’ your market segment online.
On the plus side
A unique, focused and easily recalled .courses url confers so many advantages. It immediately tells everyone what you do. The .courses extension has a clear meaning and carries value as a keyword for those looking for educational opportunities. This means it’s a great way to make your brand stand out from the crowd in search results, earning you more clicks.
It’s a signal to others that you are tech-savvy, ahead of the game and not afraid to be different. It has an air of authority, and makes your brand name more recognizable and memorable. In fact, because industry-specific urls are such a clear, powerful statement about who you are, some companies are totally re-working their corporate image and website design around their cool new web address.
Changing web addresses may seem like a big deal, but in fact it can be quick and easy to do. By keeping your old web address active and using a simple server redirect, you can ensure that anyone visiting your old site is automatically rerouted to your snappy new .courses home page.
To take full advantage of your new domain name, it makes sense to also create professional .courses email addresses to align with your new web address. After all, your email address is another cornerstone of your online image, and again this is a simple process – contact your hosting service should you need help.
With your new web address and email address making such a clear brand statement, you’ll be on course to graduate to the next level of online marketing.