20 Tips to Get the Most Out of NamesCon - Part 1

How to get the most out of NamesCon

NamesCon is the domain industry’s premier event where the industry gathers to learn and do a lot of business with one another. I’ve lost count of the number of different conferences I’ve attend over the years and I’ve found there are some techniques that I’ve found really useful in getting the most from them.

I would like to thank NamesCon for the generous offer of a 20% discount off the going rate to WhizzbangsBlog readers. All you need to do is click on the above banner to get the discounted registration rate.

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1. Have a clear objective
Don’t attend NamesCon because it’s a great event for parties (they are great!) but attend because you have a clear business objective in mind. It could be you want to achieve a certain amount of domain sales, buy a portfolio, meet specific people or take your registrar account manager out for dinner to thank them for a job well done. Whatever your objective is, write it down and hold yourself accountable to it at the end of the conference.

2. Attendee List
Download the NamesCon App and check out the attendee list. Reach out to  people you want to meet with and with any luck you’ll get a response.

3. Check out the sessions
I know that many people act like they are almost proud of not attending sessions but there’s some really good sessions that shouldn’t be missed. For instance, I’ve been asked to do one of the keynotes (shameless plug) this year and I will literally being putting days of work pulling data together to ensure that its valuable for NamesCon attendees. So always check the agenda and ensure you schedule sessions your interest you in.

4. Your Schedule
Whatever you do…..keep a schedule! Every second is precious at NamesCon and it’s regarded as really bad form if you’re late to a meeting. Everyone is busy so if you’re late then it quite often messes up the other persons schedule and they won’t be happy about that.

I’m typically up at 7am each day and after checking emails I’m at a breakfast meeting at 8am. Unless it’s the last night of the conference I don’t stay up later than midnight. I’ve found that it’s very rare that good deals are done after midnight…..especially if the person you’re speaking with has had a few drinks.

5. Time Zones
Managing time zones for a conference with people flying in from all over the world can be a little daunting. There is ONLY one time zone and that’s the time zone for the conference and in this case it’s Austin, Texas. In Outlook there’s a really good feature where you can turn on another time zone in calendar to help get over the trauma of having 2am meetings in your local time zone!

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Saturday Musings – The Age of Anxiety

So many people live with anxiety...

I find that everywhere I go I here hear from people who are stressed, anxious and feeling overwhelmed by the world around them. This is particularly true of the current generation who are constantly talk about being “stressed out”. Is there a solution to this pandemic of mental anguish? I think there is start anyway....

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I will be the first to say that there is not a panacea that will fix every stressful situation but when I talk with people about their pain, there is quite often a few common threads. I hope that unpacking some of these will assist those of you that are stressed and put your feet on more solid ground.

Slow Down
Today’s world is nothing short of frenetic. If you’re a student, then the volume of material you need to learn seems to be ever increasing. If you’re at work, then the inbox never seems to get emptied.

No matter how many extra hours you spend trying to get your work done there always seems to be more just around the corner. There’s a saying, “No good deed goes unpunished.” If you’re good at your job, then guess what! We’ll load you up with more because you’re one of the few people that can get things done.

Many years ago, I found myself in this situation. I was literally working from about 7:30am until 2-3am, with a break for lunch and dinner. No matter hard I worked I couldn’t get through everything and the pace seemed to be relentless.

I shared about my miserable existence with a friend of mine and he gave me some great advice. If you get a good night’s sleep, then you’ll be more potent the next day. I thought the world would end if I didn’t put in my ridiculous hours but boy was I wrong.

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Saturday Musings – Equal Opportunity vs Equal Outcomes

Choose your equal....

I must admit that this blog post may get some people a little riled up…..but that’s OK as long as it provokes you to do some serious thinking. Over the last decade I’ve found the world has largely gone mad as it increasingly focuses on notion of equality of outcome no matter what. What do I mean by this?

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For a start, I’m absolutely for equality of opportunity. I don’t care what gender you are, the colour of your skin or what ethnic background you hail from. Everyone should have equal opportunity and it is up to the individual to decide whether they will avail themselves of the opportunities before them.

Now let’s look at equal outcome. Equal outcome is driven by saying things such as, “We want 50% of all politicians to be women.” or “If you are from a particular ethnic race then you get a bump in your educational score.” These sound like worthwhile goals until you unpack them.

Let’s imagine you are going to the doctor and find they are of the race that gets a bump in their education score. Does this mean they are qualified, or did they get a passing grade because their race? I would imagine you don’t want any of those thoughts going through your mind as you discuss your upcoming medical condition with them. What you want is the best qualified doctor giving potentially life and death advice.

Likewise, you’re about to jump on a plane and a women’s voice comes over the PA announcing she is the captain. Should we be worried that she is potentially under qualified and was awarded the position because of her gender?

I find these two scenarios unbelievably insulting to all those doctors that happened to be also from “bumped up score race”. It’s also insulting to all those women who work so incredibly hard to achieve a life-time dream. To my way of thinking it’s just wrong.

As soon as you mandate an outcome you’re no longer part of a meritocracy where your individual skills are what allow you to gain your goal. In some circumstances a philosophy of “equal outcome” can be very dangerous and as I said above it’s incredibly insulting to all those hard-working individuals that just happen to belong to a societal group that is “blessed” with a leg up.

We can even push this further. Let’s imagine we have a society where 75% of the health workers are women…..should we then mandate that this should be 50% to reflect the gender properly?  Should we then get rid of a whole lot of female doctors and nurses and replace them with men who either don’t want to do the job or are not qualified to do it?

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vanclute
Well said and watching first hand how the USA is completely imploding because of the PC movement as we speak, I couldn't agree mor... Read More
10 November 2019
Rawgi
I think you are on the right track. Try being on the negative side of that thinking, like I am now 66 and have been told I am t... Read More
10 November 2019
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Why I Struggle with Domain Sales

The problem with domain sales

Let me say right up front that domain sales as a business model is really difficult way to try to make a living. There are some exceptions to this statement, but they are few and far between.

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The problem with most domain sales is they are more a function of luck than of a carefully planned strategic decision. They happen so infrequently that for the majority of investors they don’t know when and what quantum of size the next sale will be. This makes planning in your business next to impossible.

For instance, let’s imagine you have a portfolio of 5,000 domains and during the last 12 months you sold a domain for $5,000 in January, one for $20,000 in June and finally one for $5,000 in September. This brings the total of your sales to $30,000.

This sounds great and everyone trumpets the $20,000 sale when you get together at NamesCon in January. What most people don’t tell you is the fact their renewals are $50,000 and during the last 12 months they went backwards by $20,000. Sure, this is a contrived example but I think you can get my meaning.

The dream is that one day you’ll sell a domain for $1,000,000 and all the waiting and constant reinvestment will be worth it. I hate to rain on your parade but given that only a handful of domains are sold for these sums of money each year then your aspiration will likely remain a pipedream.

The question I want to ask sales investors is actually quite simple, “What domains do you drop to reduce your costs so you're profitable?”

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Wolftalker
..words of wisdom.
06 November 2019
mgilmour
Thanks for that!
06 November 2019
ideafarmer
As I sit on a 1000 domains portfolio dependent on occasional sales and hoping for a big sale... you make me reconsider my strategy... Read More
06 November 2019
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30th Anniversary of the Australian Internet

Celebrating 30 years of the Internet

A few days ago, I had the privilege of being invited to attend a celebration of the 30th anniversary of the Internet in Australia. The event was held in Sydney and was organised by Peter Coroneos, the former CEO of the Internet industry association, and was supported by the “who’s who” of the Australian Internet industry.

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As a former director of the association it was great catching up with past colleagues and journeying down memory lane together as we recounted how the Internet has transformed our lives. For the first time in Australia’s history we were no longer isolated by our geography as the Internet brought us within one hundred milliseconds of everywhere in the world.

I chatted with a director of the association who is now running a university business incubator program. He asked me what he should say to the budding entrepreneurs under his charge. I said to him, “Get them overseas as fast as possible and open their eyes to the fact that Australia is no longer geographically isolated.”

Amongst many other things, the speech made by Paul Fletcher, who is the Minister of Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts, picked up on the point that Australians had embraced the global marketplace. They had done this not only as consumers but also from businesses investing in reaching overseas markets via the Internet. So watch out world, here us Aussies come!

Honourable Paul Flecter

Paul Fletcher - Ministry for Communications, CyberSafety and the Arts

During the evening, many industry luminaries were highlighted for their efforts, either as entrepreneurs, technical experts or from a policy perspective. It was also sad to hear of the passing of others who had contributed so much to not just the Australian Internet industry but played valuable roles on the global stage.

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