Just returned from NamesCon 2018 in Las Vegas. It was amazing to meet some of our clients and also see some others participate online in the live domain auction. Attending a conference such as this one can be a great way to get ahead in the industry, learn new things, and meet your peers. Here are some observations of how you can get the most out of a conference, not just NamesCon but any conference you might attend.

Identify Your Goals and Target Audience.

Every conference has a set of topics on the agenda that are tailored to the audience in attendance. Your goals should also be tailored to such an audience. In the domaining sphere, there are 2 major annual conferences: NamesCon and NameSummit (slated for August 6 to 7 of this year). But you are not limited to attending just these. If you identify that your target audience (i.e. potential end user buyers) are attending another conference then it would make sense to attend it. But for the sake of this article, we will focus on NC & NS.

Differences between NamesCon and NameSummit.

During the last day of this year’s NamesCon, I had a chance to sit down with Steve Kaziyev, who is one of the founders of NameSummit (NS), to learn more about what makes that conference different from NamesCon (NC). What he explained was that NameSummit is geared more towards startups and branding/naming side of the business. This makes NS worth attending if you are looking to reach out to potential end-users, and also want to learn about ways to improve your own branding endeavors. NC gives much more attention to domaining and the state of the domain industry, which makes this conference ideal to gain knowledge and education. Both conferences have different target attendees and, hence, this affects the topics on the agenda. In the opinion of this writer, NameSummit and NamesCon are a must to attend for any domain investor/seller. You want to both to increase your knowledge of the domain industry and improve your branding/naming skills. Additionally, by attending both conferences you will vastly increase the volume and depth of your contact network. Put together, this┬ácan hugely improve the quality of your domain portfolio and sales.

Create your business cards with your goal and audience in mind.

At NamesCon, you will be mostly meeting up with fellow domainers, domain investors, and companies offering services to such. So keep this target audience in mind. Your goals will most likely include networking with your peers and also gaining valuable knowledge from industry leaders. So be sure to include any domains that would appeal to investors on your business cards (the back side is ideal).

Since NameSummit is tailored more towards startups, you have an opportunity to reach your potential end user buyers, especially if you have brandable domains for products and/or services. Make sure that your business cards project you as a naming specialist rather than just a domain seller. This would include wording such as “startup names (or naming)”, “unique brands”, or similar. Also be on the look out for advertising agencies. They will need that perfect domain for a new client or ad campaign. So you want your business cards to end up in their hands as well.

Besides business cards, what else can you do to get the most out of a conference based on your goals?

Goal: Promote Your Domains

You will want to make contact with domain investors/buyers, domain brokers, ad agencies, and Web developers. You can insert your best domains on the back of your business card and also create other print collateral that can include your domains.

Goal: Acquire Knowledge

Although a talk on the agenda can contain valuable and actionable info, not all do. However, in attendance are company CEO’s and founders. Seek them out and ask questions. You may gain much more valuable insights through one-on-one conversations rather than listening to a talk. So ask good questions.

One of the things that made NamesCon invaluable was also the downloadable app. You can find people you want to follow or connect with and stay in touch.

These are some observations on how you can get more out of a conference you attend. You may have other thoughts or ideas. Please feel free to leave a comment below. In the meantime, here are some photos from this year’s NamesCon:

NamesCon 2018

Closing Keynote Roundtable