We've noticed a trend lately here at Webnames.ca. While our corporate and small business customers continue to do their best to protect their brands online by registering the applicable domains, they also seem to have a creative side. More and more businesses are thinking outside the traditional brand protection box and looking for unusual domains and these tend to turn into marketing microsites.
I'm sure you've noticed some of these website addresses on the tail end of TV commercials. One recent campaign comes to mind - Unilever's Sunsilk Shampoo is rolling with a few 30 second spots as part of their Get Hairapy campaign. Who would have thought a domain name like GetHairapy.ca would be worth registering?
Tessa Wegert over at One Degreelast week just how effective and affordable a microsite campaign can be. Using her Valentine's Day themed site as an example, she was able to build and launch a one-page microsite in less than 24 hours for the cost of the domain and some web design time. In just one week, this microsite became the second biggest referral source of traffic to their main site. They've also seen an overall boost in direct site traffic, as visitors have referred their friends.
Tessa has some tips for anyone comtemplating their own microsite campaign:
- Get creative. The more unique your concept, the more attention you’ll receive. Start looking into available domains early. The limited options still out there promote creativity by necessity.
- Make it light. Humour, games, and quizzes resonate with consumers. Give them something they’ll enjoy to encourage brand recall and loyalty.
- Make it relevant. Be sure your concept and theme tie back to your product. It has to speak to your service offering to be effective beyond its own popularity.
- Time it right. If there’s a seasonal event or holiday coming up you could tie your campaign to, all the better. Tap into what’s already top of mind for consumers with a related theme.
- Tell a friend. Don’t just rely on sites like Digg to get the word out. Send your concept to existing contacts, even family and friends, to gain critical mass, and include a “send to a friend” feature on the site.
- Give it legs. If you can, devise a concept that can be rehashed in later months. It may even become a regular site feature that continues to draw visitors over time.