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Buttondown's Strategic Upgrade to Expanding Beyond a .email Beginning
By Tsani Gramatikova access_time 2 min read

Buttondown, a refined tool for producing newsletters, combines a minimalist interface with powerful automation features to streamline the process of writing and sending emails. Its functionality serves as an editorial assistant by checking for typos, broken links, and image issues, while its portable subscription widget facilitates audience growth across various platforms. CEO Justin Duke, frustrated initially with the limitations of Tinyletter—a tool owned by Mailchimp—decided to build a better version. What began as a weekend project evolved into a comprehensive six-year journey, transforming Buttondown into a service offering far more than its initial scope, including webhooks, Markdown support, a REST API, integrations, and more.

I was using Tinyletter (a similar tool, still around, owned by Mailchimp) for a long time and was fed up with how it worked. I had the worst possible thought any programmer can have — “can I build a better version of this myself?” — and what started out as a project for a long weekend turned into, well, six years and counting.

Justin Duke for FounderBeats

Buttondown initially launched using the .email domain extension, a top-level domain (TLD) designed specifically for email, communication, and messaging services. Such extensions can provide immediate relevance and availability but pose potential limitations for the brand as it expands its services. The .email domain, while initially fitting for Buttondown, could restrict the company’s growth into broader digital services, confining the brand to a niche that might not fully encapsulate its evolving offerings.

Recently, in a strategic move to align the brand with a broader professional image and enhance its marketability, Buttondown upgraded to the Exact Brand Match (EBM) domain, 

Announced by CEO Justin Duke via Twitter, this transition helps prevent traffic loss and boosts marketing efforts, ensuring that Buttondown remains easy to find and refer to, thereby supporting future expansion and diversification of services.

While it may be tempting to save money by opting for a cheaper, compromise domain name, the potential loss in terms of brand recognition and revenue should not be underestimated. Investing in a premium domain name is a smart business move that can pay off in the long run. Contact us to learn more about our premium domain options and how they can help your business grow.

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