Today, we direct you to some emerging stuff on domain names. To be sure, when you’re in the back, cleaning kegs, your online presence is about the last thing on your mind. But, we all know the web is an important face of any brand. Now, you might have heard some hub-bub recently about the new Top Level Domain names coming out. This article from some fellow beer attorneys provides a nice overview. The gist is, Top Level Domains (TLDs) are things like “.com” or “.net” and, drum roll please, the “.beer” domain name is going to come out soon.
Certainly, the new .beer TLD is a fun one. Some blogger will no doubt secure “drink.beer” or “ilove.beer” and we’re happy for whoever manages to nab those up. But, the question the folks behind the article above pose is an interesting one. That is, should you take advantage of a special period of time right now to secure the domain name for your brand? Check out their article, but the short of it is that if you’re already a trademark owner right now (and that doesn’t mean registered with USPTO) you can take some steps ASAP to get your brand’s domain.
Our view is that if you’d be heartbroken you didn’t have that domain name, then you may want to look into it. But, for most breweries, sinking time into this sort of thing isn’t a huge deal. You have your .com, Google’s going to help people get there, and if anyone starts improperly using a website suggesting they’re affiliated with you, there are existing routes to take care of that. Your brand is important to you, and it’s important to your consumers. But, the likelihood is that, unless you’re one of the biggest of the big, no one wants to fork out cash to secure a domain name similar to your brand’s. In fact, our guess is you probably don’t own the .net, .org, etc. already, unless your domain registrar sold it hard enough in a package deal. There are too many other places to spend money when you’re starting up or once you’re well past launch.
For those looking to stake a claim, however, now’s the time to do it—before the gold rush. And, again, if you’d be heartbroken not to have the domain, it seems worth getting out in front of this one right now. Otherwise, just with any domain name, you can wait until it’s available for the public to register, and go ahead and register the one you want and that’s available.