Why you should get rid of your ‘Domainer’ title

A few days ago I explained why I don’t consider myself a domainer, a title and word that has yet to make any dictionary.

Simply put, the activity surrounding ‘domaining’ is not only misunderstood to those outside of the industry, it’s also often distorted and abused by those in it.

Allow me to explain, once again, that unless someone woke up one fine morning with a university degree that says “Domainer” on its certificate, no such pure thing exists.

My earlier post was about how the domaining universe is expanding versus contracting – Rick Schwartz used the word “shrinking” – and that’s solely because those that want to call themselves “domainers” are a fast-dying breed.

As a graphic designer & web developer, I have the luxury of observing the domain industry from a distinct standpoint, avoiding the pitfalls that many newcomers – but also old-timers – are running into.  You too can do the same, even if you are a musician, a real estate broker, a forex trader, an IT guy or an aspiring American idol.

To succeed in what you do with regards to domain names, you must step aside and away from the “domainer” mentality; keeping an one-track mind of what constitutes our industry is not going to get you anywhere. You need to take your industry’s perspective and carefully apply it to domain names; this way you will be having a distinct advantage over any self-professed “domainer”.

The domain industry is not in danger of contracting, simply because there is untapped territory that no hard core “domainer” will tell you about: the world outside of “domainers” – and this should be your business target, your goal, your oyster.

And reaching out, exploiting if you must the riches of that outside world, you have to first shed your domainer mentality – as if it were a sin.


  1. I agree to a point. Please allow me to explain.

    The certificate (which does not exist) would create confidence in the consumer mind. Devoid of that you might as well be a guy selling watches on the sidewalk.

    I offer the following as a solution to bring credibility to those involved in on way or another with the purchase, management, sale, or development of domain names and create and foster confidence to consumers.

    Why not use this title
    Domain Industry Professional

    Devoid of some form of title that exudes validity or verification of skills I have to believe that any professional in any industry would (and BTW with good reason should) lack credibility and that is the case in any industry not just the domain industry.

    I think Hi, I ‘m Joe and I’m a Domain Industry Professional trying to sell you a domain name sounds better than

    Hi I’m joe blow a graphic artist expert …wanna buy a domain name from me?

    My .02

  2. Scott – It’s not a matter of using this or any other title. My post is about getting rid of one’s domainer mentality, not about how you approach someone to sell a domain. It’s about how *any* professional would perceive, function in and take advantage of their specific industry’s knowledge and skillset to achieve their goals in domaining; be it development, leasing, sales or anything else. The industry is not as narrow as some want to make it appear to be.

  3. There may only be 20 pure (successful) domainers in the world anyway… the rest of us are out there working the mean streets doing all those things you listed above 🙂

  4. Good post Theo, I have never thought of myself as a “domainer” I do use the term when writing because I think its just the common name.

    I agree with you about the mentality, that’s the whole thing that needs adjusting. From jealousy, to hero worship, to understanding why some big companies don’t get it.

    You see the mentality on the forums, where people think because they think the letter q sucks that all names with a q in the LLL or LLLL suck. What matters is the real world.

    The hero worship is another thing, I think some in domaining have done great and its cool to read about. But I don’t put anyone in domaining as Genius up there with Einstein,DaVinci, Galileo etc…

    I am not sure what the domain industry professional tag would mean, anyone can call themself anything what supports it? What would the public respect ? And anyone can get a name being the least bit professional and get lucky.

    The business is what it is and I am not sure that will change. I have written many a time, we are not all on the same team, Domaining is Tennis or Golf not Football or Baseball IMO. You make it alone, you may get some help but no one but you is paying the rent or the renewal fees. Again IMO

  5. Spot on analysis, Theo.

  6. Well anymore I am a YouTuber who also owns domain names. I have not been “in the domain industry” for quite some time. Back in the day I spend more money on it then I was bringing in, and ended up dropping a lot of them, and kept some I want to make into sites, or that make the reg fee at least back on parking. I am always looking at new ways to use my domains though. I just started to use Dev Hub on a few of them.

    YouTube has been good to me, with a video now in the 1.5M views range, and earning 100.00 a month with no renewal fees.

    In the .CO launch I got 2 generic terms, one of which is Conditioners.co, a product name, and the other being Amish.CO, a name that I wanted due to growing up Amish, and I wanted to re-brand my EX-Amish.com forum to Amish.CO, to expand it’s meaning and reach.

  7. Look at each domain as a business on its own or as a subsidiary in a diverse enterprise and you have already shed the domainer tag. Simple.

    Candy’s good, Sex is not 😉

  8. Joseph – I think you’ve done a great job with your viral videos and overall YouTube presence, great example! Nice .co registrations as well. What about kolopedo? 😛

    Sri – Very good, some of us can definitely claim an outstanding ability to turn virtual businesses into brick and mortar corporations. Even the Candy.com sale is one such case, since Rick Schwartz receives dividends from the sale of actual products.

  9. Excellent post! I agree that the “domainer” mentality of the industry is contagious amongst newbies.

    I am making the transition currently from domain reseller to domain developer. I’ve decided to “become the end-user” and develop a few names to see what can come of them. This part of the ride has re-conditioned me to buy domains more objectively. I buy based on development potential and not on “collectability”.

    I think the average domainer could learn a lot form the average developer.

  10. I never call myself a “domainer” which I believe has a strong negative connotation to it in the view of the public (Wipo and Attorneys too).

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