In October 2020 two entrepreneurs joined the On Deck Founder Fellowship, a community of founders at the earliest stages of starting a company. After desperately looking for “Calendly Open Source” on Google without success, they decided to move forward with the idea of building their own calendly alternative. And that’s how Calednso was born. With the mission to connect a billion people by 2031 through calendar scheduling, five months later Calendso rebranded to Cal and invested in the exact brand match domain name – Cal.com in 2021. The rebrand was met with great feedback from their community. Given that the URL in their case is not only the brand’s home online but an integral part of their users’ personal links to Cal (for example cal.com/johndoe), having a three letter domain is a huge advantage.
Three letters .com domains are extremely valuable as they are short, memorable and over 60% of those names are owned by global brands.
In this interview, Bailey Pumfleet, Co-Founder & Co-CEO of Cal.com shares more about the origin of their brand name, why they picked Cal.com as a domain, and what is new and exciting in their future plans.
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and how Cal got started?
Both I and my co-founder Peer have always wanted a scheduling platform that is more extensible and customizable than anything that exists out there, so we decided to build it. Naturally, we found that many other people and companies were also facing the same struggles as us, which propelled our growth substantially.
How did you come up with the name Cal? Was there an “aha” moment when you knew it is the one?
We actually started out as calendso.com, but due to the fact that we are a primarily link-sharing-based business, we saw a need for a shorter domain/brand name. Hence, Cal, short for calendar. It’s one of the only short (3-letter) domain names that work with our market sector.
Three letter .com domain names are very rare and were all registered as early as 1997, how did you get your hands on Cal.Com?
We bought it after months of searching for super short and brandable .com domains. Acquiring such a short .com domain nowadays is a huge task.
What value do you feel Cal.com brings to the Cal brand? How do you think it would affect the business had you not managed to secure the domain?
Our plan is to build a strong, memorable brand. Cal.com is the kind of domain/brand name that achieves exactly that.Bailey Pumfleet, Co-Founder & Co-CEO of Cal.com
Many customers switch from competing scheduling products to us solely to get a shorter scheduling link, so it benefits our customers as well.
What was the vision and purpose of your company when it first started and how has Cal evolved as a brand since?
The purpose was originally to solve our own use cases that we’d experienced, but after talking to hundreds of companies in need of a scheduling product, we’re now looking to cater for everyone’s scheduling use cases and expand the functionality of our product. We plan to build an infrastructure-level division to the company where we provide APIs, and essentially become Stripe for time.
In your area of expertise what are some of the bad brand naming recommendations you’ve heard?
I’m no expert on brand naming haha. Just pick a name that you like.
What do you do to make sure your marketing is effective?
We don’t put a strong effort into marketing, as lots of our growth has been organic and our numbers are growing incredibly well without much marketing effort.
What would your advice be to entrepreneurs who are just starting out?
Stop worrying about product-market fit, YC applications, investors, ad campaigns, or anything and simply just build a great product. If your product is good enough, it will be successful. If it’s not, it won’t.Bailey Pumfleet, Co-Founder & Co-CEO of Cal.com
So many founders worry about the wrong things, but the best companies have always grown simply because their product is good.
What is next for Cal?
We plan to capture even more market share in the SaaS consumer scheduling space, whilst simultaneously growing our enterprise sales, and working with organizations of all sizes to power their scheduling.
Last thing, if some of our readers have more questions, where can they reach you?
My DMs are always open, or you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and say hi. I’m always down to chat.
You can follow Cal.com on Linkedin, Instagram, Twitter or visit their website to find out more about the company.
How does your brand name match your company vision? What new horizons can a better name open? Get in touch if you feel your brand deserves a better name, we are always happy to help.
Bailey Pumfleet branding domain domain name domains interview