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Monday, April 27, 2015

Are Digital Taglines a Way Forward for Domain Names?

By Duane J. Higgins, ceo and 

"What's your tagline"?

Is there is going to be a time in the near future when the question of "what's your tagline" will become as common as the oft repeated questions of yesteryear such as "what's your phone number" or "what's your email?"

The reason I ask is that the ongoing release of the new gTLDs (domain name extensions) so far has been met with a tepid response at best. In fact, the registration numbers of the new domain names are already 10s of millions below what had been projected and expected by many. Is it time for alarm bells? Perhaps it's just time we take a look at the potential expanded usage of Internet domain names as we move forward.

So, first we had .com, .net, .org and a handful of other domain name extensions. We now have or will soon have .app, .blog, .buzz, .guru, .fun, .group, .fashion, .love, .music, .news, .deals, .play, .shop, .sport, .video, .web, .club, .design, .flowers, .cool, .tube and on and on.  Soon to be close to 1000 new domain name extensions added to the mix of available domain names.

From day one the Internet has been "aflutter" with methods and strategies that we all use for promotion and identification. From the individual to the corporation.  With the evolution of the Internet and how that medium is integrated into all of our lives- many identification techniques have been created over time.

To name a few we have:

Real names, user names. email, screen names. aliases, domain names, web pages, urls, blogs, Facebook, Youtube, Linkedin, Twitter, Phone numbers and on, and on and on. 

So what's next when it comes to ways to identify ourselves on the Internet?

I'm looking at digital taglines.

The definition of the tagline from is here:

In entertainment, a tagline (or tag line[1][2]) is a small amount of text which serves to clarify a thought for, or designed with a form of, dramatic effect. Many tagline slogans are reiterated phrases associated with an individual, social group, or product. As a variant of a branding slogan, taglines can be used in marketing materials and advertising.

This is an even better definition from

tag line
An often repeated phrase associated with an individual, organization, or commercial product; a slogan.

A domain name tagline is a subdomain that is formatted and formulated into a traditional tagline.  Which can then be used to link to locations around the Internet. Just like the traditional domain name.

 For example:

Note the dots between the words. The dots denote that this phrase (tagline) is also a domain name as well. 

So to clarify a few points. What exactly is a subdomain? 

According to

A subdomain is a domain that is part of a larger domain; the only domain that is not also a subdomain is the root domain.[1] For example, and are subdomains of the domain, which in turn is a subdomain of the com top-level domain (TLD). 

This is basic subdomain usage with a third level domain name::

.com is the first level domain
yoursite is the second level domain
products is the third level domain

So what makes a subdomain a digital tagline?

A subdomain becomes a domain name tagline when it is formatted as a marketing tagline would be.

Because as it turns out that the same domain name system (DNS) that is capable of creating sub domains is quite capable of creating domain name taglines as well. 

Here are a few examples of digital taglines that I threw together for demonstration purposes only.  Note the dots between each word. 
Some sample  taglines:

You get the idea. With upwards of 1000 new domain name extensions currently being launched the possibilities are literally endless. Where could taglines  be used?  

Social media and advertising is the short answer. 

As for social media, I could see digital taglines evolving to similar popularity as "hashtags."

We all know what hashtags are. They provide a way for social media users to tag their posts with keywords, which in turn make it easier for social networks to organize the information and for users to search.

To start off I wanted to refer you to an article (by Barry Swartz) found this week in Search Engine Land. According to the article:

"Google Confirms New Experiment with Twitter in Search Results."

According to this article Google is expected to begin showing Twitter content in search this month.

Digital taglines can be used anywhere that a domain name could be used and anywhere that a hashtag could be used and beyond. Think of digital taglines attached to social media posts. Remember that if you use the digital tagline you can then connect the tagline (string) to any other site or location that you want because the tagline is actually a domain name. Or you may just use the tagline for an identifier for you.

Digital Tagline vernacular could be integrated into everyday language just as the term "hastag" is often used relating to social media posts. For example would be pronounced sleek (dot) style. would be yoga (dot) gal and on and on. Further integrating the use of taglines into popular media and culture.

Digital Taglines would be of course something that could be added to a marketing strategy. The tagline allows for more advertising, more marketing and most importantly more visibility and memorability. Dot slogans can be a new advertising channel.

There will soon be 1000 new domain name extensions. Certain domain extensions would certainly be "grooved" for tagline marketing. Some of those were listed above such as: .app, .blog, .best, .buzz, .guru, .group, .fashion, .love, .music, .news, .one, .deals, .play, .shop, .sport, .video, .web, .club, .design, .flowers, .green, .cool, .tube and on and on.

Is it possible that eventually we will also all need (or want) a dot brand? So what is the big advantage of the tagline?

And just a few opportunities for linking from the tagline:

web page 
Twitter page  
You Tube site 
your store or shop  
social cause  
political cause  
political campaigns 
sports teams 
clubs and other groups etc.

I also wanted to bring up something very interesting with the advent of adblocker apps and browsers. What I find interesting is that the adblock apps will likely drive a shift towards more native advertising or sponsored posts. Whereas websites place advertorial style content in editorial posts with disclosure regarding what is paid for.

Yes, the ad blocker apps are a direct attack on Googles  revenue platform. However, it is very possible that tagline ads could be the beneficiary of the ad block apps. Adblock apps and browsers wont block domain names. Domain name are integral to every website and location on the Internet. Domain taglines are domain names as well.

Much like phone numbers, email addresses and physical addresses. All digital taglines would be unique. Unique to you. Your brand. Your online identity. However you wanted to look at it and use it.  No two would be the same.  (by the way, the uniqueness is what makes domain names so valuable to begin with). The value is in the differentiation. The uniqueness. The originality. The unique value that can not be replicated. For example. is probably worth several million dollars. What do you think is worth? Virtually nothing. Those differentiations could apply to taglines as well.

The very first domain name ( was registered in on March 15, 1985. Is it possible that we are heading  a new era of taglines and dot slogans?

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