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Weekly newsletter of SmartBranding - Issue #2
By SmartBranding Team access_time 5 min read

ChatGPT by OpenAI stole the show

We could try talk about something else but let’s not fool ourselves, this generative AI has been the topic of many conversations and will sure be for some time. We managed to interview ChatGPT and get its opinion (can you really call it that??) on domain names as brand assets.

Earlier this week we released a study of 165 Generative AI startups and their naming choices. Pretty timely! Turns out 47.9% operate on .com domains, followed by 29.7% on .ai. Check out the full study for naming highlights and the rest of the stats.

Personal Names as Brand Names

There are many reasons why companies might choose to use personal names for their brand name. Using a personal name can help to create a sense of personal connection and trust with customers. It can also make the brand feel more human and relatable, and establish a stronger emotional connection with clients, business partners and investors. Using a personal name can help to differentiate the brand from competitors and make it more memorable. We analyzed 500 brands across countries and industries. Find out the stories behind names like Mercedes, Balmain, Jordan and Swarowski, as well as what domains they chose for their brands in our latest study.

Podcast of the Week – From Oracle and Zendesk to Podcast Hawk – meet Stewart Townsend

Say hello to Stewart Townsend. Stewart has spent the last 20 years specializing in accelerating revenue at global SaaS companies through developing and managing indirect sales programs. He is now focused on Podcast Hawk, a platform to help entrepreneurs use the power of podcasts as a marketing tool. Tune in for an insightful chat on the 37th episode of the SmartBranding podcast.

Guilt-free chocolate? Yes, please!

We are supposed to have one podcast highlight for the week, but this one really can’t wait. Glenn Gardonne is a growth strategist with a proven track record of delivering immediate results. He has worked with multinational Fortune 100 brands, including some of the world’s largest direct store delivery (DSD) and consumer packaged goods (CPG) companies. Presently Glenn has the job everyone dreams of – he is leading a guilt-free chocolate brand. Check out this episode for some tips on how to build an authentic brand with great company culture, and yes, what is the chocolate that you can eat this season without regrets.

Upgrade of the Week

Pry Financials, founded in 2019, is a financial planning application that assists entrepreneurs in forecasting revenue and spending by breaking all data down into comprehensible graphs. Since its public launch in early March 2021, the company has grown by about 30% month over month. Brex acquired Pry for an astounding $90 million in April 2022 as part of its mission to reimagine financial systems so that every growing company can realize its full potential.

The company acquired the perfect domain for their brand –, before its acquisition. Pry initially launched on domain name. The .co is a top-level domain extension, an acronym for company or corporation. 

Three-letter domain names are often considered more prestigious and professional than longer domain names, which helps to create a positive impression with potential customers and investors. They are also rare, making them valuable from a scarcity standpoint.

In other news

Here are the stories from other publications that caught our attention.

Lush Has no Regrets Over Quitting Social Media

Lush quit social media 12 months ago. Last week the brand’s top marketer shared they have no regrets. Many brands reassessed their relations to third party platforms over the past couple of years due to privacy scandals, endless algorithm changes and in a pursuit of brand independence. These big brands are in a strong position to quit the content sharing hamster wheel, as they have invested in building high brand awareness and large email lists. Bottega Veneta was one of the frontrunners and we collected some feedback from marketers on their bold move at the time.

‘We were completely blind,’ – Amazon messed up Black Friday for brands

Amazon provides a dashboard that keeps track of ad spend, including sponsored products, sponsored brands and sponsored display ads, for each brand. Companies use this report and their own sales data to decide how best to allocate their ad budgets.

By Friday evening, the ad spends reported by Amazon were roughly 50% less than brands expected them to be. Consumers could still see the sponsored ads, but on the back end, brands had no idea how much they had spent thus far on advertising. See the full story on AdAge.

Does more = better?

Apparently not. Only bad marketers think more messages mean more effectiveness You might increase total message recall by adding more of them, but you’ll lose credibility, as shown by the World Cup protestor who couldn’t pick one cause. Good read from MarketingWeek here.

From the Archives – Do Investors Care About Domain Names?

Fifa has appointed Calm as the ‘Official Mindfulness and Meditation Product’ of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. The startup is on our list of sponsors for this World Cup and we came across this interview with Calm’s founder and Jason Calacanis from before the brand was a huge success.

Quote of the Week

You made a big investment getting that domain name, which means you have a big idea. This makes you serious in the eyes of an investor. When I see that, I think this person has got it together.

Jason Calacanis on

We hope the above information is useful to you in your journey of building a strong brand online. What do you want to see in our next newsletter? Let us know, we are happy to help you find the information you need!

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