The short answer is: Yes. Premium domains not only make VC funding stronger, but are for companies who want their brands to be taken seriously, even revered; who want to achieve brand notoriety—woven into the fabric of the culture for decades to come.
Why? Quality premium domains are lead generators, brand enhancers, and appreciating assets. All three lead to increased ROI and higher company valuations—while reducing the cost of customer acquisition. As MicroStrategy’s CEO, Michael J. Saylor, said about the $30M sale of Voice(.)com (2019): "Ultra-premium Domain Names like these can help a company achieve instant brand recognition, ignite a business, and massively accelerate value creation.”
Here’s a few of my favorite examples of companies leveraging a premium domain to accelerate value creation (you can find more at BuckleyMedia.com/casestudies):
As renowned angel-investor, Jason Calacanis famously said: “The name of your startup is critically important to its success—six letters or under, generally easy to spell and certainly unique. Great entrepreneurs tackle and solve challenging issues like naming their company well, and if you can’t name your company well, you’re simply not worth investing in. I know it’s a harsh statement, but it is true. better you hear it now while you still have a chance to hit a home run.
"If you go into a VC or angel meeting with a crappy name, they will look at it the same way they look at you unshaven with a stain on your shirt and a deck full of misspellings: that you lack focus and attention to detail. A stunning domain name paired with a world-class logo makes you look like a killer. That is what you want when you’re in a meeting asking people to give you money: Credibility. Under no circumstance should you settle for an ok or bad name, except if it’s just a placeholder and you’re not showing it to investors.”
Want more proof that premium domains make VC funding stronger? Here are some recent VC/PE/Fortune 500 domain upgrades:
“Acquiring the Aura.com domain is an investment in the Aura brand as we grow our business and build the best all-in-one digital protection platform for consumers.” —Lark-Marie Anton, CCO, Aura
Note: My thanks to Crunchbase, along with industry colleagues Jamie Zoch, Elliot Silver, and Andrew Miller, whose reporting assisted in the compilation of this post.
Kate Buckley is CEO and founder of BuckleyMedia.com, a premium domains, naming and branding agency. She is an expert at premium domain consulting and brokerage, specializing in private domain acquisitions and divestments of ultra-premium domain names. Kate has personally brokered millions of dollars in both private and publicly-recorded top domains sales. A member of the ICA, Kate is also a member of the Business Constituency of ICANN.