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CrowdNamer.com, or is it CrowdName… CrowdNaming?

[Update 12/10/14 Just heard about someone who’s doing this. Wonder how much better they’d do with a great name of their own? Dockname.com ]

[Update. This is ready to test NOW. If you are looking for a name for your startup (or a better name) I will hand pick a posse of knowledgeable domain and branding professionals, and in a private, invite only chatroom, we will post our finds and suggestions. You only need to feel comfortable explaining clearly what you’re looking for in a name.]

Probably the main motivation for getting into domain names, at the time (about 3 years ago), was to scratch up some extra cash in order to self-fund a startup. I’d just sold one of the 4 domains I owned for more than I earn in a couple of months at work. “Really, could it be this easy?” Well, it’s not. Or hasn’t been. I used that money to buy a couple of hundred domains. Most of them were bad choices- experiments around keywords where there might be traffic (but not cybersquatting). I was trying to think outside the box, and indeed that’s about all there is left to think about when it comes to domains, as I’m sure most of you know.

Anyhow… Tough to start something without any capital, especially when you’re not a developer. But one of the great things about domains is how they can ‘lock in’ an idea. It’s not just an idea if you have the domain name as well!

CrowdNamer.com, CrowdNamers, or is it CrowdName.com. CrowdNaming.com? (Either way I’ve got it covered but I think CrowdNamer is the one). The idea starts out pretty straight forwardly. Get feedback from the crowd on choosing a name for your business. Let the wisdom of crowds help you name your company and find a domain for it. Along the way domainers might suggest one of their names, with a price. The crowd might help you find out who owns that Twitter handle someone is sitting on. They might help determine a fair price for a domain.

I’d really appreciate any feedback you have about the idea. Which of the three domains do you think makes a better brand? What do you think the minimum viable product that would provide enough real value to get started might be? Do you think reputation in a community would be enough to drive participation? Do you think a business model could be built around taking a small percentage of sales between domain sellers and buyers?

Are you my CTO?

crowdNaming.jpgCrowd NamerCrowd Name

Crowd Namers

 

2 Comments

  1. Mark Fulton wrote:

    Great names John. I prefer CrowdNamer.

    The service is something that is needed by many, but you will be starting off against several well established competitors. (PickyNames, SquadHelp)

    I believe this project would end up being more work than there is potential for reward. Though you could start off with something very simple like hntrades.com

    Modified Q&A script could work well for this. Let me know if you want to talk further.

    Thursday, February 24, 2011 at 1:38 pm | Permalink
  2. John wrote:

    Thanks for your thoughts Mark! Especially your frank opinion that it might be more trouble than worth. It is very easy for me to get carried away. I used to contribute names at PickyDomains. My names would get ‘liked’ occasionally, but I never ended up with the prize money, even though the domains often were registered shortly thereafter. I did it more for fun and kept the good names. I hadn’t seen SquadHelp, but I see that it’s 99Designs for names and logos. It’s quite similar to what I had in mind. But while both of those services invite the crowd to submit ideas, they lack in the ability to have the crowd participate in the evaluation of a name. HNTrades is interesting. An HN-like platform that supported voting up might be simple enough to start. Will think on it some more and follow up shortly. Thanks again for your input.

    Friday, February 25, 2011 at 6:04 am | Permalink

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