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Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Domaining 101: To Fish or Cut Bait?

By Duane J. Higgins, ceo

As a long time domain name investor I'm constantly reminded of the valuable process of "fishing and cutting bait" with my own domain portfolio and specific domain names. It really is a constant process of culling, cultivating and enhancing the portfolio. Particularly when a specific domain name comes up for expiration or renewal.

A definition from Wikipedia of my favorite colloquialism is below:

Fish or cut bait is a common English language colloquial expression, dating back to the 19th-century United States, that advises for swift decision-making (to act or not to act), and cautions against procrastination and/or indecisiveness. The meaning of the expression has expanded over time and can be interpreted in a number of different ways depending on the context. 

Thinking about this healthy process got me to thinking about other popular colloquialisms that are often bandied about business circles and relate to the business world and everyday life.

(By the way, I had to look up colloquialism myself for this definition): 

plural noun: colloquialisms
a word or phrase that is not formal or literary, typically one used in ordinary or familiar conversation.

Here is a list that I found of more traditional colloquialisms from

Many of these expressions are I'm sure "older than the hills" (5th from bottom). However I would say in most cases truer than ever. ( have cut the ones from this list that are less applicable to business practices)

A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush
A chain is only as strong as its weakest link
A diamond is forever
A fate worse than death
A fly in the ointment
A friend in need is a friend indeed
A good man is hard to find
A leopard cannot change its stripes

A little knowledge is a dangerous thing
A nest of vipers
A picture is worth a thousand words
A piece of the action
A pig in the poke
A pound of flesh
A sight for sore eyes
All that glitters is not gold
All the worlds a stage
Alls well that ends well

Caught between a hard place and a rock
Come hell or high water
Dead as a doornail
Drop in the bucket

Dumb as a box of rocks
Dumb as a rock

Half hearted
Has the cat got your tongue?
Heard it through the grapevine
Hell in a handbasket
In a pickle
Its raining cats and dogs
Keep your friends close and your enemies closer
Law of the land
Let the cat out of the bag
Life is like a box of chocolates
Lifes too short
Like a chicken with its head cut off
Like a fart in a whirlwind
Like a moth to a flame

Like two peas in a pod
Living on borrowed time
Long in the tooth
Loose lips sink ships
Lose your marbles
Mad as a hatter
Make no bones about it
Mind your Ps and Qs
My cup of tea
My minds eye
Old as the hills

Stubborn as a mule
Stupid is as stupid does
The left hand doesnt know what the right hand is doing.

To "fish or cut bait" is not on this particular list. However, it is a process that I have used quite consistently with my own domain name portfolio  over fifteen- plus years of domain name investing. Generally, my domain portfolio has  fluctuated somewhere around five hundred names during most of this time. With my total domain name purchases being upwards of 10,000 total names to date.

How did I do that when my current portfolio numbers only around a few hundred domain names?

Buying, selling, trading, holding and letting many thousands of domain names expire. 

"Fishing and cutting bait"

As for my continued domain investing strategy. To date I have run my domain name business solely as a break even proposition.  Regularly buying domain names and letting others expire at the same time. Any profits were reinvested. A zero sum game. Basically no profits and no losses either.

So what is the end game?  

The end game is a refined domain name investing strategy that it took me 15 years to develop.

That is invaluable. 


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