A Brandable Domain Distress CallMike Sullivan
Lauren Milligan, Founder and CEO of ResuMAYDAY.com, an online outplacement and support service that provides quick, expert and strategic job search tools to help you develop an effective job search strategy. Lauren’s company is leveraging a brandable domain that end users are finding easy to remember when they need it. Lauren answered some questions to provide a better perspective on brandable names.
Mike: Tell me a little bit about yourself and your business.
Lauren: I am a professional resume writer and job coach. I started ResuMAYDAY at the end of 2001 as a direct result of 9/11 and the Enron collapse. These two events culminated in my realization that if I was ever going to have a job that I loved, I had to create it myself – and that you never know how your life can change in a moment, without warning. I started as a one-person company, but now I have a full team of resume experts and an assistant. At some point in time, this actually became a legitimate business! We provide executive resume creation, interviewing skills, job-search coaching and personal branding strategies. Our work is primarily completed via phone and computer; we have national and international clients. Even though I’m in the Chicago area, most of my clients come from outside of Illinois.
Mike: Can you tell me what resuMAYDAY.com means or represents?
Lauren: Quite simply, we answer the MAYDAY distress call of job seekers. People feel like they’re in a sinking ship when they send out hundreds of resumes with no response. I talk to dozens of people like this every week. Other people don’t even know where to start; they’ve been with the same company their entire career and never had to write a resume. Within minutes, our clients know they have a powerful team of experts on their side. We become their lifeline, by knowing exactly what employers want to see on a resume and hear in an interview.
Mike: Have you received any feedback on the name from peers or customers?
Everyone I talk to has an immediate reaction to my company name (usually a chuckle), and it starts the conversation. It’s a very clever name, and I can take none of the credit. My very clever husband came up with it while we were playing around with variations of the word ‘resume’ and the moment I heard it, it stuck. I’ve had many clients tell me that they met me years before, and they just couldn’t get the name out of their head so when it came time that they needed a resume, I was the first (and last) call they made.
Mike: Why did you decide to choose a brandable domain name over a generic or keyword domain?
Lauren: I enjoy injecting a bit of quirkiness into the day whenever I can. I don’t think I realized how important a business name is at the time that I chose it, but I knew that ‘Lauren Milligan Enterprises’ was not for me. I’m not stuffy and I do best when I’m not taking myself too seriously. The name really is a perfect reflection and blend of what the business does,along with what the client can expect from us.
Mike: Is this your only domain name or do you owns others? If so which domains do you own?
Lauren: Well, for those who are a bit more literal, I also own Resumeday.com (Resume – day) and I also own resumereward.com. I do a lot of radio interviews where you don’t get a lot of time to spell out the domain name (and who listens to people spelling out words, anyway?). In that case, I tell people to get to resumereward.com – both these domains lead right to the ResuMAYDAY site.
Mike: Are you willing to share your visitation statistics so far?
Lauren: I don’t ever keep up with this. Should I? A quick view of our google analytics said that I had 530 visits last week, with 313 visitors. I must have been mentioned in an article somewhere!
Mike: What type of marketing are you doing to promote the site? Any online such as seo or ppc? Any offline advertising?
Lauren: Ugh. I tried Facebook PPC and I’m convinced it’s a scam. I gave it a week and will never do that again. Enjoy your dirty money, Facebook. SEO – absolutely! I have a wordpress application on my website so I personally can update it myself; I don’t need to wait for my web designer to do that for me. All of my updates are SEO-focused. I’ve developed wonderful relationships with journalists and bloggers who write about career issues, so I’m a constant resource for them. Whenever I’m mentioned in an article, I post it to my website and the ResuMAYDAY Facebook page, which directly links to my Twitter and LinkedIn profile.
I co-host a weekly, online radio show that generates a lot of online hits, as do my speaking engagements. I’ve also been a guest expert on Chicago radio and television. For me, it’s all about free PR. I’ve been doing this for nine years, so the marketing aspect of running a business has become second-nature. It’s an automatic process. The worst money I ever spent in my business was on traditional advertising. I won’t make that mistake twice.
Mike: Do you have any advice for others looking to chose a brandable domain name for their business?
My personal advice is to choose a company name that gives an indication of what you offer. No one will care about your company until they know they need you, so they need to get it right away. Some business owners try to be really esoteric or intellectual about their company name, not realizing that they are alienating their target market. Now, I know that Google, Twitter, Squidoo and Flickr all go against this, but frankly, most companies will never achieve that level of success. I chose a company name that tells people that I write resumes. People get it, they like the name, they talk to me. That’s what worked for me.
Thanks to Lauren for her time and information on ResuMAYDAY.com.